I just got the nicest email from Mr. Pocklington, with this photo attached. Wow, THIS is a bit of history. I also had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Pocklington, who prefers to be called "Herb", at the 2009 International Motorboting Symposium held in Seattle, Washington, April 24-27. I didn't realize Herb was in the audience when I gave my presentation on the classic fiberglass Chris Craft Commander, and I was surprised when a gentleman stood up and came forward and addressed the group, and quite honored when he complimented the program and announced he was the General Manager when all of these boats were built.
After the program we had a brief moment to talk, what a delightful way to spend an afternoon, boys with their toys and hobbies, and life long adventures. There were so many distractions.
Here is what Herb's message said about the image below:
"Paul, the graphic of the Italian 31 Commander ad is pretty bad, sorry, but I'm also including a photo of the opening of the factory, where it was built on the bank of the Tiber River near Rome. That's me welcoming the Pope's representative Cardinal Tisserant and other notables."
Here is a bit of info on Mr. Pocklington:
Born in Algonac, Michigan, Herb Pocklington has over 50 years experience in boat-building and business management. He began as a factory worker unloading boxcars at the nearby Chris-Craft Corporation. During World War II, he enlisted in the armed services, married, and completed a one- year chemical engineering army program while serving his country.
He began his business career immediately after cessation of hostilities and later served Chris Craft as a buyer, Public Relations Director, Advertising Mgr., Director of Product Planning & Styling, and as CEO of international operations, residing in Switzerland.
His overseas management experience includes service as Chairman & CEO of Chris-Craft S.A. (Switzerland) and Chris-Craft Italia. He traveled to 66 countries and established manufacturing operations in Australia, Chile, Italy, Netherlands & Uruguay.
Herb retired in 1992 as President of Hatteras International, a multinational company and the worlds largest builder of large, luxury Motor Yachts.
After retiring from business, he became Chairman of the INTERPLANA Consulting Group, comprised of six former international CEOs and executives.
He has served without pay as a volunteer consultant in the former Soviet Union, assisting with reorganization of different firms in the fields of communications, ship- building and repair, import-export, business consulting, agriculture, finance, and pharmaceuticals.
And he has assisted with reorganization of one of the former Soviet Unions largest shipbuilding yards in Sevastopol, Ukraine, on the Black Sea, and has also participated in the re-structuring of Pharmacia, a large Pharmaceutical chain in the same region.
In April 2005, while embedded with of the US 3rd Infantry Division in Baghdad, he assisted Civil Affairs officers with democratization programs in meetings with Iraqi leaders.
Herb currently resides in Merrit Island, Florida.
I might add, Herb is a gentleman and delightful guy, willing to talk with a stranger, and having an infectious positive outlook on life.