In 2014, Regional Directors were appointed to lead and manage the eight new regions of The Mission to Seafarers.  The creation of global Mission regions is designed to refocus the charitable activity of maritime welfare service provision for seafarers close to the point of delivery. It also increases efficiency and transparency. (Photo above, from left to right: Lanc Lukin, Ed Swayze, Cedric Rautenbach, Stephen Miller, Ken Hawkins, Ijeoma Ajibade, Garry Dodd and Paul Burt. At St Paul's Cathedral London United Kingdom.)

Cedric Rautenbach - Regional Director, Africa

Cedric was born Simonstown Cape Town South Africa. He studied at the University of Cape Town and completed a Teaching Diploma and taught commercial subjects at a local high school.

He then joined the missionary organisation Scripture Union and ran their volunteer programs, eventually becoming the Director for Volunteer Programs. Cedric then completed a second degree in Theology at the University of Stellenbosch and became a minister in the Presbyterian Church serving in a Parish in Richards Bay KZN.  While in Richards Bay he became a part time chaplain, and later the chairperson of the centre in Richards Bay.

His involvement as chaplain and chairperson led Cedric to be invited by Mission to Seafarers to take up the position as Regional Director. Cedric is married and has three children. He plays golf and enjoys running half marathons.

Garry Dodd, Regional Director, Australia

Garry competed a degree in Social Science (Welfare) and worked as Youth Development Officer. This involved running a drop-in centre, counselling and running behavioural, educational and challenge programmes for teenagers and young adults. He competed an honours degree in Theology and was ordained in the Diocese of Newcastle, Australia. He served a country curacy and was made rector of an inner-city parish for 11 years. During this time he completed a degree in Psychology. In 2009 he was made chaplain with the Mission to Seafarers in the Port of Newcastle. In recognition for is work in the Port and Church, he was made Canon of the Port in 2013.

He continues to be the senior chaplain in Newcastle and is RD for Australia and Papua New Guinea. This involves caring for the 27 centres around the vast country and nurturing the 11 other ports who have support people, but no centre. In this challenging economic and political climate, Australia is committed to opening up new centres to best serve all Seafarers.

Garry is married with three children. He enjoys spending time with his family and friends. His hobbies include going to the beach, swimming, sailing, jet ski riding, snow skiing and adventure activities.

Ed Swayze, (Acting) Regional Director, Canada

Following the retirement of Nick Parker this year, the post for Regional Director for Canada is currently vacant. Our port chaplain for Thunder Bay, Ed Swayze has taken up the post of Acting Regional Director in the interim from October 2016. Welcome Ed.

Stephen Miller, Regional Director, East Asia 

Stephen was ordained in the Diocese of Worcester, England he served in parishes in Dudley, West Midlands (1991-94), and Hurst Hill near Wolverhampton, (1994-99).

In 1999 Stephen joined The Mission to Seafarers as Port Chaplain in Rotterdam, the largest port in Europe. In January 2002 Stephen was posted to Dubai, where he took charge of maritime ministry in the United Arab Emirates. In 2006 Stephen began a project to build the World’s first Seafarers Support Boat, M/V Flying Angel, which was launched in February 2007 and named by HRH Prince Charles in Dubai.

Educationally Stephen has wide interests, having studied Genetics, Theology and Maritime Law. Stephen’s interests outside work are keeping fit, and sailing. He has successfully climbed Mount Kilimanjaro and is an RYA qualified Oceanmaster.

Ijeoma Ajibade - Regional Director, Europe

Ijeoma has worked in the UK public sector for 25 years, including local authority Audit and Special Investigations, Housing Advice and Homelessness, and welfare benefit administration. She spent part of her career working for the London Assembly and two Mayors of London (Ken Livingstone and Boris Johnson).

Ijeoma was ordained 2010. She is an Honorary Minor Canon at Southwark Cathedral and she also ministers at St Philips Earls Court. She is passionate about marginalised communities and justice,  Ijeoma is a community activist with a long track record of working on various justice issues including human rights, and HIV awareness and prevention.

Ijeoma adores reading and manages to get free books from publishers and authors which she then reviews. She enjoys urban fantasy, murder mysteries, paranormal stories, romances and comic books, and is a member of the London Comic Book Club.

Lance Lukin - Regional Director, Oceania

Lance was born in Rotorua, New Zealand. After High School he trained as a teacher before entering ministry. Lance was ordained in 1993 and served in a variety of settings before being appointed as a Chaplain to the New Zealand Army in 1997. During his time as a military chaplain Lance was deployed to East Timor and Afghanistan.

In 2016 Lance retired from the New Zealand Army and joined the Mission to Seafarers as Port Chaplain for Wellington and Regional Director for Oceania.Lance has a passion for Chaplaincy, and is currently completing a Master of Chaplaincy degree through the University of Otago, a programme that he helped to develop.

Lance is married to Andrea, and together they have four grown children, one grandson and a pet Cavoodle. In his spare time Lance likes to read, walk the dog, go out for coffee with Andrea, watch movies, and scuba dive.

Paul Burt, Regional Director, The Gulf and South Asia

Paul first worked in the Gulf in the 1970s, selling air-conditioning hardware. He then trained for the ministry in the early 80s and worked in parish ministry in Scotland and Bahrain.  In the 1990s and 2000s he was involved in school chaplaincy (Cambridge and Winchester) and teaching and then joined Mission to Seafarers as a senior chaplain in September 2012. He then went on to become Regional Director of the Gulf and South Asia in 2013.  

He is married to Miriam (who is Indian) and thus has lots of relatives in the most significant part of his region! He enjoys reading, music, tennis and has a keen interest in military history. 

Ken Hawkins, Regional Director, The United States of America

Ken has a wealth of professional business experience and long ties with his local church community in Seattle USA. He has been responsible for revitalising our work in the USA.

His work focusing on a holistic approach to Mission which involves seafarers, volunteers and the community working together to solve problems. He runs an annual cruise fundraising lunch that is key to driving income and which funds the Seattle Mission centre.

Ken is married with children and lives in Seattle.