Dan Alexander is the Assistant Engineer aboard the R/V Endeavor. Though he is on this trip as a relief engineer, he has been working with research vessels for most of his professional career. Including University of Rhode Island, he has also worked aboard ships at Woods Hole Research Institute and the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences.
Dan’s home town is Long Island, NY where he grew up on the water. Like most kids in his neighborhood, he grew up wanting to work on the ferries that shuttled islanders to and from the mainland. He also was always fiddling with electronics as a child. It seemed all things were leading him towards his chosen field of study in college: Marine Engineering.
As an adult, he felt a degree in marine engineering would afford him more flexibility in jobs and help him build a well-rounded experience, on shore and at sea. He received a B.S. in Marine Engineering and a 3rd Assistant Engineer’s license upon graduating from the U.S. Merchant Marines Academy in Kings Point. He also received a Naval Reserve Commission. After that, he worked through different jobs aboard cargo ships and tankers, as well as spent some years delivering sailboats to the Bahamas and Caribbean.
Along with being involved with Marine Engineering as a career, Dan also owned a bar with his brother: The Narragansett Café, in Rhode Island. As years moved on, he looked back to the water for his main focus and left the bar-owner part of his life in the past. All in all, Dan has been working at sea for going on 35 years and has been all over the world. His favorite ports so far are the Faroe Islands, Barbados, and Bermuda.
When Dan is not on the water, he’s on the water. You would think recreation time away from long cruises would be spent on dry land or in the mountains, but Dan enjoys working on and sailing his 40’ wooden boat. Staying around the beaches and enjoying the ocean are some of his favorite things, next to traveling at sea. He does say, however, that these times away truly make you appreciate home.