awards and recognition - Click the links below for all the details

William M. Benkert Award
Named in honor of Rear Admiral William “Mike” Benkert (1923-1989), a renowned coast guard officer, the Benkert Award is the foremost national award that recognizes marine environmental excellence. This award is designed to recognize outstanding achievements extending far beyond mere compliance with regulatory standards. The Benkert Award win demonstrates to ATC's stakeholders and to the U.S. Coast Guard significant advancement toward the goals of pollution prevention, operational integrity, and environmental excellence. More...

Benkert Award applicants are evaluated on their environmental objectives and policies, pollution prevention and safety quality management, environmental outreach efforts, participation in partnerships with environmental organizations and government agencies, and performance measures and results.


Rear Admiral William Benkert was a distinguished U.S. Coast Guard officer who was widely known for his leadership and vision in Marine Environmental Excellence. He made many outstanding contributions to the USCG Marine Environmental Protection Program while directing the Office of Marine Environment and Systems and the Office of Merchant Marine Safety. He is fondly remembered as the father of the U.S. Coast Guards Marine Environmental Protection Program.


Core Objectives:

  1. To increase public awareness of the importance of protecting the marine environment and delicate marine ecosystems.
  2. Encourage adherence to the international environmental management system protocol developed by the International Standards Organization.
  3. Encourage environmental innovations in operations, maintenance, cargo handling, waste management, and training and other industrial activities.
  4. Providing a means for sharing with other marine enterprises successful methods and techniques used by the winners.”


The award program has three levels of recognition (gold, silver, and bronze) to acknowledge an applicant’s progress in pursuing environmental excellence.

Any marine transportation related commercial organization owning, operating, or otherwise managing vessels, designated waterfront facilities, fleeting areas, oil spill removal organizations, or any other entity engaged in maritime operations subject to U.S. Coast Guard regulations are eligible to become an award applicant.

Award Evaluation Criteria

1. Environmental Policies, Objectives, and Targets

2. Pollution Prevention, Preparedness, and Response Management

3. Environmental Outreach

4. Partnerships

5. Performance Measurement and Results

Executive Evaluation

Committee An executive level Evaluation Committee comprised of five members from trade organization, non-governmental organizations, and other governmental agencies makes the final selection. The winning organizations in each of the four categories are selected on the basis of combined input from the Award Application Report Evaluation Committee, the MSIS data, and the site visit.

President's Health, Safety, and Environment (HSE) Excellence Award
The highest award given within ATC is the President's HSE Excellence Award. This award is given anually to a vessel which significantly exceeds environmental and safety performance expectations. Every ATC ship seeks this award, not just for the recognition (which is first among peers) but also for the prize of $10,000 that is used to enhance the quality of life on board as determined by the entire crew. This year, the President's Award was given to the Alaskan Explorer for exception service and safety & environmental performance.

Legacy Award

The Legacy Award is presented by the Pacific States/British Columbia Oil Spill Task Force to recognize superior oil spill prevention, preparedness, and response. ATC was presented with this notable award" in recognition of their outstanding committment to safety and oil spill prevention."

Legacy Award Press Release pdf
Legacy Award Information

ECOPRO Exceptional Compliance Award

ATC was awarded the ECOPRO Exceptional Compliance Award by the Washington State Department of Ecology. This award recognizes excellence in tank safety and vessel stewardship.