Home NewsPeople and Places Mariika Virrankoski-Poulsen and Helle Gleie to boost WISTA Denmark

Mariika Virrankoski-Poulsen and Helle Gleie to boost WISTA Denmark

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Mariika Virrankoski-Poulsen

Mariika Virrankoski-Poulsen

Mariika Virrankoski-Poulsen and Helle Gleie bring their maritime expertise to serve the board of WISTA Denmark

WISTA Denmark has welcomed two of the best known members of the country’s shipping community to its governing board.

Mariika Virrankoski-Poulsen becomes secretary of WISTA Denmark, the national branch of the Women’s International Shipping and Trading Association, a global organisation for female executives in the maritime and related trades. Helle Gleie takes up the new post of WISTA Denmark co-ordinator for Nordic collaboration.

Irene Rosberg, president of WISTA Denmark, said: “We are very pleased to have Mariika and Helle join our board.  They have a thorough knowledge of the national and international shipping industry and have been strong supporters of WISTA for a considerable time.”

Ms Rosberg, who is programme director for the Executive MBA in Shipping & Logistics (the Blue MBA) at Copenhagen Business School, was re-elected as president at the annual meeting of WISTA Denmark in April.

Ms Virrankoski-Poulsen is a lawyer with more than 15 years of experience in commercial shipping law at the international level. She has worked at shipping law firms in London, and for the past 10 years has been in-house counsel at Clipper Group.

Her experience covers a wide range of legal, commercial, corporate, regulatory and compliance matters within the maritime field. She is participating in the current programme of the Executive MBA in Shipping & Logistics, which is a part time course enabling executives to continue their day-to-day professional duties.

Helle Gleie

Helle Gleie

Ms Gleie has a distinguished career that has encompassed leadership in major shipping companies and trade associations. Helle was appointed the first director of the Sustainable Shipping Director and her current responsibilities today include being executive director and board member of the benchmarking body KPI Association Ltd and chief executive of ITOLEAD Consultancy Group, of which she is also founder and owner.

Her earlier posts included global head of crew operation for Maersk Supply Service; vice-president responsible for crew management at EMS Ship Management, an independent company within EMS ASA/Eitzen-Group; and board member at EMS Philippines (a joint venture between EMS and Aboitz Jebsen).

Co-inciding with those responsibilities, she was invited to chair the manning and training committee of Intermanager, and to join Intertanko’s Human Element in Shipping Committee.

As a member of a negotiating team seeking the release of six seafarers taken hostage in Nigeria, she was able to apply her communications skills to humanitarian purpose.

Previously, Ms Gleie had posts with BIMCO, Copenhagen Tankers, Unik System Design, TK Boesen, H Folmer, Pepnautica and Alfragt. Her first job was at sea, serving on heavy-lift ships.

She was a founder and early board member of WISTA Denmark, which formally came into being in 1990, and helped put it firmly on the map by being a lead organizer of the first WISTA International annual conference to be held in Copenhagen, in 1992.

The composition of the new WISTA Denmark board is as follows: president, Irene Rosberg; secretary, Mariika Virrankoski-Poulsen; treasurer, Lene Bonde, who is general manager, Clipper Group; communications and website, Sofia Fürstenberg of Maersk Maritime Technology; events manager, Christina Agrafioti of Maersk Broker; and co-ordinator for Nordic collaboration, Helle Gleie.

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