Chief Mate, R/V Western Flyer

Reporting to the Master of the R/V Western Flyer, the Chief Mate is second in command of the vessel and ensures the safety and effectiveness of all deck operations and ship’s equipment.  The incumbent is responsible for vessel maintenance and ensures equipment is in top condition.  Additionally this individual assists the Master and Chief Engineer in carrying out their duties.

The Chief Mate manages the day to day activities of the crew and assigns duties in the cleaning, and the maintenance and repair of the vessel and ship’s equipment.  Also coordinates with science parties and executes cargo loading and offloading plans.

The Chief Mate directs crew in mooring and weighing anchor in an effective manner, as well as in the deployment and recovery of all scientific equipment including ROVs, AUVs, instrument packages and moorings.  The Chief Mate leads the emergency response team in the event of accident or fire on the vessel.  The incumbent must be able to work in a hazardous marine environment.

MBARI places an emphasis on cooperation between all employees.  It is expected that the Chief Mate develop a good working relationship with the ship’s engineers, shore personnel, ROV pilots and science party.

After demonstrated effectiveness as Chief Mate, experienced candidates will be considered for relief Master position.


The Chief Mate is second in command of the vessel under the Master and is required to represent the company’s interests, to uphold company policies and follow all applicable regulation at all times.

The Chief Mate is responsible for implementing safety procedures outlined in the Safety Management System (SMS) and for implementing all environmental protection procedures out lined in regulations and company policy.

The Chief Mate may be assigned as the Vessel Security Officer, ISM compliance officer, and/or shipboard medical officer.

In conjunction with members of the science party, responsible for developing safe and efficient deployment and recovery plans for new pieces of scientific equipment.

This individual serves as a bridge watch officer (OICNW) as required by the Master and will follow all applicable rules and regulations as required by USCG, port state control, state waters, and federal authorities.

Minimum Qualifications

High School diploma or equivalent and minimum five years demonstrated success as a Mate is required.  A minimum USCG license as Mate of 500 GRT/3000GT, Oceans w/ OICNW or 3rd Mate unlimited is required.  Must also possess a valid medical certificate, GMDSS, and TWIC card.

The ability to work up to one month continuously at sea between port calls is required.

Desired Qualifications

Appropriate USCG/STCW Master’s license and experience sailing in the position are highly desired, as the candidate may be considered for relief Master.

Submit your cover letter and resume by e-mail to, or by mail to the below address, or by fax to (831) 775-1620.

MBARI, Human Resources
Job Code: Chief Mate-WF
7700 Sandholdt Road
Moss Landing, CA  95039

MBARI offers a competitive compensation and benefits package, including medical, dental, vision, short and long term disability, life insurance, 403B retirement plan, and paid time off, such as vacation, holiday, and sick leave.

MBARI is an Equal Opportunity Employer. MBARI considers all applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, national origin, age, disability, covered veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local laws.


MBARI Welcomes Diversity