Our Board of Directors
Leading the Steamer Virginia V Foundation
Our board serves as the strategic and financial leaders of the Foundation, providing guidance to the Executive Director and the staff on how to best fulfill our mission.
Garret Holt, President
Garret, and his twin brother Kyle, first stepped aboard the VIRGINIA V in 2009, looking for something to do over the summer while awaiting their sophomore year as pre-engineers at the University of Washington. They immediately fell in love with her timeless class! However, it was only during their volunteer orientation that they realized that the ship was, in fact, operational. Over a decade later, the Holt twins continue to be found down in the engine room as Designated Engineers.
Garret continued at UW and got a bachelor’s degree in material science and engineering. Post college, he first worked at genetic sequencer biotech startup called NorthShore Bio, Inc. He was most recently on the staff of Snow & Company Boatbuilding as a marine designer, machinist, and sign maker.
Garret joined the Board in 2017 and is a member of the Board Development and Operations Committees. Old boats got into his blood enough that, in 2017, he and his brother became the proud caretakers of CATOCTIN, a vintage member of the Classic Yacht Association.
For more about Garret, visit his Linkedin page.
Jeff Deren, Vice President
Jeff joined the Foundation as the Director of Engineering in June 2022 upon the retirement of Joe Schmitt. Jeff has done an amazing job leading the engineering team in the care and feeding of our 119 year old steam engine and all the mechanical systems of VIRGINIA V and much more. He was invited to be a board member later in 2022 and was elected as Vice President, beginning his term on January 1, 2023.
Kyle Holt, Secretary/Treasurer
Kyle Holt and his brother Garret Holt (another volunteer of the foundation) were enthralled by the VIRGINIA V in 2009 as they were starting their engineering studies at the University of Washington. Since then, Kyle can still be found down in the engine room oiling things, turning valves, basking in steam, and otherwise having a splendid time as a designated engineer.
Brian Johnson, Director
Brian Johnson has been a shipwright in the Seattle area for many years and has helped in the restoration of VIRGINIA V and many other historic vessels. He joined the Foundation board in 2022.
Grant Johnson, Director
Grant’s first encounter with VIRGINIA V occurred in 2017 when he and his family relocated from Texas and he came across the ship while exploring the shoreline of Lake Union. The vessel's storied history, along with its wooden hull and steam power, appealed to him and he agreed to join the Foundation’s board later that year. Grant previously sailed as an engineer on U.S. flag steam-powered merchant vessels and he enjoys woodworking so VIRGINIA V particularly appealed to him. He couldn’t pass up the opportunity to support the ship as a National Historic Landmark with a mission of sharing its maritime heritage with the next generation.
Grant has been the Vice President of Health, Safety, Quality and Environment at Foss Maritime. Grant previously chaired the U.S Coast Guard’s National Offshore Safety Committee. He and his family reside in the Indianola, Washington.
Sterling MacKinnon, Director
The Steamer Virginia V Foundation welcomed Sterling MacKinnon to the Board in early 2023.
Sterling's background in business communication will be an asset to the Foundation and a full biography will be posted here soon!
Peter Proctor, Director
Peter Proctor joined the Steamer Virginia V Board in the fall of 2020. Since that time, his many decades of experience as a shipwright specializing in wooden vessels have been a huge asset to our efforts to restore and preserve VIRGINIA V.
When Peter took a college job washing sailboats in 1973, boats became all he thought and cared about. A self-taught carpenter became a master shipwright under the mentorship of a local legend, master shipwright Joe Dunato. Six years studying under Joe at Dunato’s Marine led his transformation from a carpenter to a master shipwright.
Peter founded Proctor Boat Co. out of the back of his truck in 1985. A few years later he joined Seattle Shipwrights Co-op, then running big projects and large crews. He was eventually recruited to be the general manager of Jensen Motor Boat Company and held that position until the company shut down in July of 2019.
After leaving Jensen, Peter restarted his own shipwright business. One of his projects has been a major contribution to the restoration of the lightship SWIFTSURE (a vessel in the fleet of NW Seaport), one of VIRGINIA V's neighbors along the Historic Ships Wharf in Lake Union Park. During the extensive Virginia V haulout from 2021-2022, Peter served as the main liaison from the board to the shipyard and actually worked as one of the team of shipwrights on the project at Pacific Fishermen Shipyard in Ballard.