2023 Honorees 

Biographies of honorees

Commodore Bolton is one of six United States Merchant Service Commissioned Commodores; and still holds an Unlimited Master Mariner license.  He has over 44 years of maritime experience and over 33 years in command. He is a First-Class Pilot, expert witness, and consultant for Maritime companies, the Marine Corps, and the U.S. Navy on many issues including equipment design, mission readiness, joint military operations, and in-theater logistics. He helped design and implement the new Navy Lighterage Systems now in use today.  He led the team to design the English-Speaking curriculum for the Maritime Academy of Asia and Pacific located in the Philippines.  Prior to his retirement from CMA, he was on the MARAD design team for the new Training Ship, also known as the National Security Multi-Mission Vessel. 

Commodore Bolton is a Merchant Marine Veteran of the Grenada Invasion, Persian Gulf War and Iraqi Freedom, and many military training missions all over the world.  He sailed with American Maritime Officers for 30 years.  On May 1, 2008, Commodore Bolton accepted the position of Commanding Officer of Training Ship Golden Bear, Director of Marine Programs and Leadership Development for the Corps of Cadets.  He coordinated nearly 20 training cruises and was in command of 11 cruises.  He organized donated port, pilot and tug services saving the academy hundreds of thousands of dollars over the 10 years of his service at Cal Maritime. 

Commodore Bolton led the rebuilding/remodeling of Training Ship Golden Bear which included all new navigation bridge, communication system, weather and navigation classrooms, the PowerLab, general studies classrooms, gym, library, cadet and officer berthing, cadet and officer mess decks.  He oversaw the design and building for the Navigation Laboratory – making the GOLDEN BEAR the only training ship with a full mission bridge simulator.  The new Training Ship was based off the design and modifications made aboard the GOLDEN BEAR.

He also implemented the maritime industry standard International Safety Management system (ISM) – making the GOLDEN BEAR the only training ship in the world with full ISM certification. 

His awards include two Merchant Marine Expeditionary Medals for the Persian Gulf War and Iraqi Freedom; US Navy Meritorious Civil Service Award for the Persian Gulf War; FEMA Outstanding Public Service Award for humanitarian aid in Micronesia; Institute of Merchant Shipping Ship Safety Award for rescuing over 30 people off a remote typhoon stricken island in the Marianas; Guam Governors Meritorious Service Award for service during the Persian Gulf War; General Dynamics Outstanding Employee Award; US Coast Guard Certificate of Merit for service aboard the USTS Golden Bear; and The Hawaii State Legislature Proclamation Certificate.

On November 20th, 2018, in Washington DC, Maritime Administrator, ADM Mark Buzby, awarded Commodore Bolton the Merchant Marine Medal for Outstanding Achievement, for his service to the country, the maritime industry and Cal Maritime.  He is the only CMA graduate to receive this prestigious award. 

Prior to retirement, he created the Captain Harry and Sharon Bolton Cruise Scholarship Endowment, designed to assist qualified Deck and Engine Cadets in paying for their training cruise.




Captain Kate McCue is the first American female to take the helm of a mega-ton cruise ship. San Francisco native Captain Kate McCue currently commands Celebrity Cruise’s $1.3 billion dollar flagship, Celebrity Beyond a 141,420-ton, 327.5-meter sailing year-round to the Caribbean and Mediterranean. As Captain, she is responsible for the safe navigation of the ship and the onboard experience for its 3,903 guests and 1,400 crew members.

Prior to taking the helm of the Celebrity Beyond in 2022, Captain McCue also commanded Celebrity Edge, Equinox and Summit. 

Known fondly as “Captain Kate” to colleagues, guests and her 4.4 million+ social media followers, she is a distinguished role-model and frequent spokesperson for Celebrity Cruises, leadership in the maritime industry and encouraging young women to pursue their dreams with the motto “if you can SEA it, you can BE it”.

Captain McCue was appointed to Master by the cruise industry’s first female president and CEO, Lisa Lutoff-Perlo in 2015 after many successful years working her way through the ranks from apprentice officer to Master Mariner.

During her tenure, Captain McCue has managed ship logistics while sailing worldwide itineraries, including Europe, Asia, Australia, the Caribbean, the Pacific Northwest and Alaska, and along the Panama Canal. Captain McCue has also served as a maritime leader while sailing several transatlantic and repositioning cruises and played a notable role in ship revitalization.

A graduate of California State University’s California Maritime Academy and has earned ongoing certifications pertaining to leadership, navigation, ship management and security.

When not sailing the world, Captain McCue seeks-out adventures with her husband and her trusty sidekick, a hairless cat named Bug Naked.

 Links for more:

Captain Kate McCue Instagram https://www.instagram.com/captainkatemccue/

Bug Naked Instagram https://www.instagram.com/bugnaked/

Madeleine is a 2015 graduate of CMA. Upon graduation, she joined MMP (International Organization of Masters, Mates and Pilots) and has been sailing off the board for the last 8 years, on both liner and tramp ships. She recently reached A Book membership status and holds an Unlimited Chief Mate's license.

In recent years, crews all over the world have experienced varying degrees of shipboard restriction, and in one of these cases, Madeleine was restricted to one vessel for 217 days – half of which she lived with her crew in a shipyard in Shanghai, China. During this time, with full support from the crew, she created the docuseries "Restricted to Ship," which received international attention. After a year spent recovering from the event, she was inspired to create a production company centered around highlighting the work lives of mariners. She feels that using cinematic effect will help to draw more of the public eye to an industry that is too far out of sight. Her aim is to not only help bring more people into the industry, but to help create better avenues of support for current mariners through the sharing of their experiences.

Madeleine will continue to ship out, upgrade her license, and grow her company "M. Leine Productions" [pronounced 'em-line'] simultaneously. Media created by M. Leine Productions can be found on YouTube and Instagram.

 Josie Alexander is the Executive Director of the Associated Students, Coordinator of both Student Activities & the Basic Needs Program at Cal Maritime. Josie has been working at Cal Maritime for 18 years, not consecutively.

Josie began her career at Cal Maritime in July of 2000 as a Resident Director for the Office of Housing & Residence Life. She moved from her hometown of Hatboro, PA, a small suburban town outside of the city of Philadelphia to Vallejo, CA. Josie oversaw Lower Residence Hall and provided support for the Associated Students in event/program coordination. The summer of 2001, Josie completed her first of eight summer cruises on the T.S. Golden Bear as the activities coordinator and manager of Pirate’s Cove. In 2002, Housing & Residence Life expanded the residence halls to include the T.S. Golden Bear’s the 01 & 02 aft decks as student housing and this became another area of supervision for Josie. In 2005, Josie was promoted to the Director of Campus Life. In this capacity, she was responsible for management of the residence halls, New Student Orientation (Co-Chair with the Commandant of Cadets), Commencement, Advisor of the Associated Students, over saw the operation of the student mailroom, and the logistical support for the staffing & ordering of products for Pirate’s Cove. In 2008, Josie was asked to serve as the Interim, Dean of Students from 2008 till 2010. In this role, she continued as the Director of Campus Life but had additional duties in areas of supervision of the Student Health Center, and the Career Center. In March of 2010, the California State Student Association (CSSA) awarded Josie with “Administrator of the Year”, the first time anyone from Cal Maritime was awarded this award from CSSA.

After Josie departed Cal Maritime in July of 2010, she traveled for a year and in August of 2011, she became the Dean of Students at Cogswell College in Sunnyvale, CA. At Cogswell, Josie’s responsibilities included Disability Services, the Residence Life program, being the advisor of their Student, and lastly Orientation & Commencement. In May of 2015, Josie was awarded the Cogswell Staff Recognition  “Mover of Mountains Award” at Commencement.

Josie rejoined the Cal Maritime family again in June of 2015 as the Coordinator of Student Activities with the possibilities of other areas of responsibility to be determined soon. Josie loved her previous ten (10) years at Cal Maritime, so it felt right to return to the campus that provided so much growth & development for her over the years. Since she’s been back at Cal Maritime, she has taken on the Executive Director role in the Associated Students of the California Maritime Academy (ASCMA) and coordinates the Basic Needs program to include the Steve & Angie Kreta Food Pantry.

Josie is an avid Philadelphia sports fan. You can never take the love of Philly away from her. One of her favorite quotes is from Allen Iverson – "We sitting in here -- I'm supposed to be the franchise player, and we in here talking about practice. I mean, listen: We talking about practice. Not a game. Not the game that I go out there and die for and play every game like it's my last.”  The love that Allen Iverson had for the game of basketball and everything that he put into each game he played is the love Josie has for her career and is the dedication of her work with students. She gets that from her mom. She was her shining star who really practiced what she preached and demonstrated her love and commitment to her family every day of her life.



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