Navy Quartermaster Succeeds at McAllister Holding
McAllister Towing works with liner and tanker fleets, docking, undocking, and otherwise assisting with vessels. The company has 12 locations along the East Coast – from Portland, Maine, to San Juan, Puerto Rico – and a fleet of more than 75 vessels.
McAllister offers careers for personnel with previous sea-going experience and individuals who work in related transportation, engineering, equipment maintenance, logistics, or supply management fields. The company is seeking experienced captains, mates, and engineers for the vessels. McAllister also needs port engineers, crewing managers, operations managers, call-center managers, crane operators, and purchasing agents.
The company values the unique skills, training and leadership that veterans have gained from their military experience; McAllister is committed to hiring both newly transitioning personnel and veterans.
A VETERAN SUCCESS | J. ELLIOT WESTALL
Captain J. Elliot Westall served in the United States Navy, retiring as a chief quartermaster after 20 years. His main responsibilities were tug master, harbor pilot, and landing craft air cushion (LCAC) craft master.
He is now vice president and general manager at McAllister Towing. He is responsible for the overall management of the company’s Virginia operations.
He joined McAllister in 2003 as a captain aboard harbor tugs. In 2004, he became site manager for the company’s liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility. He became operations manager of Virginia in 2005, and was promoted to his current position in 2007.
Westall military career was a perfect preface to his civilian one. “All of my experience as a navigator and subsequent training as tug master on to becoming a harbor pilot conveyed to the commercial industry, once I was licensed through USCG,” he said.
He said that servicemembers should get started on preparing for civilian careers before leaving the military. “Prepare early,” he said. “More than a year ahead of separation might be inadequate if certifications are required. Obtain credentials prior to separation, and seek out the departments needed for transcripts to present to USCG early, as there’s no real avenue once a servicemember is out.”
Westall loves to hire veterans because he knows what he is getting. “I’ll always hire veterans because I know what they come equipped with,” he said.
He has this advice for veteran job seekers who are meeting employers for the first time: Be flexible, and be yourself. “Don’t bring your military bearing with you, as it can turn off potential employers who don’t understand why you have it. I was told to soften the edges of my military persona because it turns some civilians off. And it’s all because they simply don’t understand why we act the way we do.”