The Mariners Club of the Port of New Orleans is a nonprofit Louisiana corporation formed January 11, 1979, to provide a fraternal and educational organization for persons in the marine industry, claims, insurance, sales, brokerage, underwriting, surveying, risk management and law in the representation of vessel interests, employers, and marine insurers. It was formed by a merger of the Mariners Club of New Orleans and the Gulf Steamship Claims Association, both unincorporated associations.
The Gulf Steamship Claims Association was formed in 1948 by a handful of men in steamship claims, notably: Gus Duplaa of Delta Steamship Co., Inc., George R. Simno, Jr., of Kerr Steamship Co., Inc., Captain Orville Bowen of U.S. P&I Agency, Inc., Nicholas S. Rizzo of Lykes Bros. Steamship Co., Inc., and Hampden White of United Fruit Company. The association was formed to cultivate broader knowledge among persons adjusting ocean marine claims. The association eventually grew to attract admiralty attorneys and marine surveyors spending a considerable amount of time in ocean marine claims.
The former Mariners Club of New Orleans was formed in 1960 as principally an association of marine underwriters. This association included marine surveyors and admiralty lawyers representing marine insurance companies and underwriters. The originators of the first Mariners Club included some twenty-three marine underwriters, ten marine surveyors, and eleven admiralty lawyers. The first officers were W. Von Trufant, then of George S. Kausler, Ltd., as Captain-President, John Bachrach, marine surveyor from Bachrach & Wood Associates, Ltd., as Mate-Vice President, George W. "Bunky" Healy III, admiralty partner of Phelps, Dunbar, Marks, Claverie & Sims, as Purser-Secretary, and Felix Burnett of Burnett & Co., Inc., as the first Yeoman-Treasurer.
In 1978 a proposal to merge the clubs was made because of the substantial number of common members to form a more organized club to serve the marine and maritime insurance claims, risk management, surveying and legal fields in the New Orleans area. The resolution of the Gulf Steamship Claims Association to merge was presented to and accepted by the Mariners Club. The merger was effective the date of incorporation of the Club.
The Mariners Club of the Port of New Orleans holds monthly meetings for the members providing fraternal association and informative speakers. The Club has several monthly meetings.
Membership is open to those persons meeting the requirements as set forth in Article X of the Articles of Incorporation. A Board of Directors of nine members, three elected each year, governs the Corporation.