Duke Marine Technical Services: Taking recruitment to the next level

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Duke Marine Technical Services’ fearless leader, Sonia Logue, has made a great impact in the shipbuilding and oil and gas industries for over 20 years.  She is a happily married mother of 3 and is a generous “Aunty” to her extended family. Sonia also takes pride in giving back to the community such as participating in the “Gift of Giving Back”, a local initiative through the Fire Department, to help support and provide meals for school children. Sonia also participates in the annual Toy Drive in collaboration with the Toronto Police Department, which helps schools and families in need during the festive time of year.  Another charitable organization that Sonia supports is QuickStart Autism and their annual fundraising golf tournament in Ottawa. QuickStart Autism helps children obtain early assistance at the first signs of autism to reach their full potential.  The Cadet Leagues of Canada have also benefited from Sonia’s generosity. She ensured Duke Marine was part of the sponsorship for the Annual Clash of the Titans Hockey Game and all proceeds went to the Cadet Leagues of Canada.

Sonia is a generous and passionate leader, who always makes time to mentor and share her Industry knowledge with her team.  Sonia has a down to earth personality and her real connections made with employees and clients alike, have established her solid and reliable reputation in the recruiting industry.  This genuine caring and focused customer service approach separates Duke Marine from competitors.

The early years

In 1997, Sonia started her career working as an assistant to her dad, John (the Duke of Duke Marine) in Oakville, ON. While her dad was the head recruiter for a start-up company, Sonia worked alongside John as they provided staffing solutions.  They supported the growth in business that brought the company to $1.5 million in sales in the first year. 

After this initial success, John and a business partner started their own recruiting firm based out of Houston to help support staffing in the oil & gas industry.  During this time, John was in Houston and Sonia was based in Canada. After 3 years in Houston, her parents became homesick and returned to Canada.

Duke Marine is born

In 2003, Sonia and her father, John, branched out on their own to start Duke Marine Technical Services, a recruiting firm that was built on the foundations of honesty and integrity. John has since retired and Sonia is at the helm of Duke Marine.

Sonia has continued to put into practice what was learned in the Oil & Gas industry, and this has enabled her to provide recruiting services not only to the oil & gas industry but to the shipbuilding industry as well.  

Sonia and Duke Marine have been providing top tier engineers and designers for the North American shipbuilding and offshore industry for over 20 years. She takes pride in her team’s ability to match their candidates with specific, specialized operational requirements. They are in the business of providing talent solutions to ensure operational excellence for their clients. Sonia not only meets her client’s expectations, she exceeds them.

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John and a business partner started their own recruiting firm based out of Houston to help support staffing in the oil & gas industry

“Through my 40+ years of both contract and permanent engineering employment, I have found Duke Marine to be the employer that I feel the most comfortable with. I have always felt a connection with Duke Marine; not as an employee, but rather as a member of the Duke Marine Family. I will stay with Duke as long as I am working.”  – Sr. E&I Designer.

Duke’s legacy – loyalty

Sonia’s contract employees are loyal to her and Duke Marine, because of her commitment to mentoring new graduates and guiding their growth and development in their professional careers. Duke Marine’s first clients continue to utilize their services. These include such companies as: SBM Offshore, Keppel AmFELS Offshore, Rowan (acquired by Ensco), Excel Midstream, Wood Group and Genesis Engineering. 

“Duke Marine played a big part providing qualified designers to help get our company started and it’s on going growth.” – Genesis Engineering, LLC.

Major accomplishments

During the economic downturn of the late 90’s and early 2000’s, due to lack of projects and demand there were no Canadian jobs in the shipbuilding industry.  Duke Marine supported finding employment for the Canadians in the US job market, as there were no jobs at home. 

For example, The Hebron Project, was a large-scale, time sensitive project that ran the risk of falling behind schedule. Duke Marine supplied 60 engineers and designers of all disciplines within a 4-week turnaround. Duke Marine’s contract employees provided the necessary solutions to get the project from Houston, Texas, out of the Gulf and up the east coast to its final destination in Newfoundland.  To this day, the rig is located off the coast of Newfoundland. The Hebron Project is a major project delivering significant benefits to Newfoundland and Labrador. These include: engineering, fabrication and construction, employment and training of a diverse workforce, research and development opportunities, along with significant royalty and tax revenue.  It’s capabilities include: offshore surveys, engineering, procurement, fabrication, construction, installation, commissioning, development drilling, production, operations and maintenance and decommissioning.

Another impressive accomplishment, due to the size and complexity of the project, was the Santa Ana Pacific Drill Ship. The project mission was to convert a ship into a drill ship. This was achieved while running in the middle of the ocean. The first time such a project had been successfully completed in this way. Duke Marine supplied staffing solutions for the various stages such as the design phase, production planning and procurement stage, all within a compressed timeline. The drill ship was the first design with the capacity to perform dual gradient drilling, a technology that uses two weights of drilling fluid to match the natural pressure when drilling ultra-deep water reservoirs. The Pacific Santa Ana can accommodate up to a 200 person crew. Duke Marine supplied employees for this project during their startup phase. The significance of this particular project is that it solidified Duke Marine’s ability to staff a project from the ground up. 

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Sonia, as Duke Marine’s CEO and hands-on leader, has built Duke Marine from the ground up

Bringing Canadians home

Due to the recent slowdown in the oil & gas industry, combined with the revival of the Canadian Naval projects, Duke Marine is proud to be part of bringing Canadians back home. They are involved in working on Canadian Defence projects, such as: the Canadian Surface Combatant (CSC), the Joint Support Ships (JSS) and Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship Project (AOPS). Duke Marine is proud to currently be partnered with Serco, Davie and others to support the successful completion of these Canadian Defence projects. 

Duke Marine Technical Services is 100% Canadian owned and operated. They take pride in conducting themselves with integrity and professionalism in every interaction with their clients and candidates. Duke Marine has major clients in Canada, USA and around the world. They are a proud participant in The Canadian Defence Security and Aerospace Exhibition Atlantic (DEFSEC) and member of The Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries (CADSI), Women in Defence and Security (WiDS) and Women in Aerospace (WIA).

Duke Marine’s future is bright

Sonia, as Duke Marine’s CEO and hands-on leader, has built Duke Marine from the ground up. With her years of experience recruiting for the specific needs of the shipbuilding and oil & gas industries, Sonia is continually driving Duke Marine to new heights.  As part of Sonia’s “hands on” style, she diligently goes above and beyond for her employees, candidates, clients and team.  

Sonia’s reputation has facilitated the sustained growth of Duke Marine.  The list of clients and project completions continues to expand and the future is very bright. Duke Marine is integral to the staffing of Canadian Naval programs and is also carving a path into the aerospace industry.

Sonia has helped to change the course of peoples’ lives.  She makes a positive impact in whatever she does. This will be Sonia’s legacy.

Find out more about Duke Marine Technical Services by visiting www.dukemarine.ca.

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