The story of Orca Spirit Marine Services begins 14 years ago when John Douglas and Walter Cadwallader forged a partnership that would create what is today one of the largest locally-owned and operated marine services companies in the region.
John’s life on the water began 30 years ago as a commercial fisherman in Port Alberni. He channelled his in-depth knowledge of BC’s remote waterways and marine life to establish the region’s first tourism tours before quickly expanding his fleet and crew to incorporate marine transportation services. Walter, a multi-generational member of the First Nations community, was also born and raised on the sea, fishing with family and crewing on whaling stations before joining John in the marine services business in 2003.
Together, their long time stewardship of BC’s coastal waters, deep belief in aboriginal engagement and unyielding focus on passenger and crew safety has helped build Orca Spirit Marine Services’ reputation as the water services partner of choice for public and private organizations, including multi-national energy corporations, government-managed naval services, aircraft carriers, cruise lines, school groups and more.
Experienced on the water. All Marine Services team members have extensive marine services experience, along with in-depth knowledge of local waterways and the hazards of accessing remote areas.
John began his career in the marine industry over 30 years ago, launching the first covered vessel whale watching business in Victoria before turning his sights to marine transportation. Now General Manager and vessel Captain of Orca Spirit Marine Services, he holds a Master 500GT Near Coastal certification, Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SMVO), and has completed programs in Marine Emergency Duties STCW95 and Marine First Aid.
Walter follows in the footsteps of his First Nation’s great-grandparents, leveraging three generations of large vessel ownership and commercial fishing experience to deliver cost effective marine services along the coastline of British Columbia. He joined the Orca Spirit Adventures Group in 2003, taking on vessel operations and management, and helping bring the vision for mutually-beneficial First Nation economic partnerships to live.
Chielo joined Orca Spirit in early 2015, bringing 15 years of Health & Safety experience, gained as an Independent Consultant and External Certificate of Recognition (COR) Auditor, to the team. His extensive background in Oil & Gas, Heavy Construction, Manufacturing, Fisheries, Marine Transportation and other industries ensures that OSMS will continue to operate under the most comprehensive health and safety policies and procedures, and remain a leader in the long-term enhancement of the industry’s Health and Safety practices.
FIRST NATIONS COLLABORATION
We support economic growth and wealth creation throughout the coastal region through long lasting Joint Venture Agreements with First Nation groups such as the Haisla Nation. We actively recruit, train and employ a significant number of Aboriginal community members, and also provide critical transportation services within territorial lands.
Our parent company, Orca Spirit Adventures, is a ‘Climate Friendly’ partner with Offsetters, Canada’s leading carbon management solutions provider. In addition to providing carbon neutral tours, we constantly seek to improve our energy efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions through advance engine technologies and other means.
• Transport Canada Master 500 GT Near Coastal Certification
• Transport Canada Small Vessel Machinery Operator Engineer Certification
• Marine Emergency Duties STCW 95
• Marine Advanced First Aid
• Emergency Medical Response
• Canadian Coast Guard Training in Oil Response, Damage Control, Search and Rescue
• Advanced Police Techniques
Join Our Team
We’re committed to hiring qualified mariners from within local communities whenever possible. If you’re an SVOP to Master 500GT Near Coastal-designated Captain, certified Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO), or if you have extensive Deck Crew experience, and are passionate about the environment, we’d love to find out how you can help us deliver exceptional marine services to our clients.Apply Online