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New Towboats Launch in Covington

Covington-based Carlisle & Bray Enterprises recently christened two new towboats -- the Enterprise and the Discovery – as the latest additions in the company’s growing fleet of towboats. 

Carlisle and Bray CEO Bill Bray also announced that the company had signed a contract to build “one more Discovery size boat, with options for five more.”

Chaplain Kempton “Chaps” Baldridge officiated the ceremony on the Covington riverfront, which was attended by C&B crews and employees, members of the Carlisle and Bray families, and clients of the company.

Carlisle & Bray Enterprises contracted with Marine Builders, Inc. to construct the two new towboats. The Enterprise is a 2,600-horsepower, 90-foot-by-34-foot vessel that will be used for current customers and to assist in any customer need. The Discovery is a 1,320-horsepower, 60-foot-by-25-foot vessel, which will service the company’s ever-growing fleeting service in the Port of Cincinnati.

“The Discovery is the 82nd hull design vessel built by Marine Builders, and at this moment, it’s the best harbor boat we have ever made,” said Dave Evanczyk, owner of Marine Builders, Inc., after the ceremony.

The Discovery and The Enterprise join the C&B fleet as towboat numbers 16 and 17. The company also operates various barges, multiple deck flats for clamshell loading and unloading, barge mounted cranes and other construction equipment, and several port and dock facilities. The company employs 175 people on its team.

“The main reason for the building these two new towboats is to improve employee safety and replace some of our old aging fleet,” said Ed Lapikas, General Manager for C&B Marine.  “Ensuring employee safety -- that every person goes home the way they came to work -- is our number one goal,” added COO Chad Bray.

Fran Carlisle, matriarch of the Carlisle family (wife of board member Wayne Carlisle and  mother of President Rob Carlisle and Chairman Bryan Carlisle) and Christine Bray,matriarch of the Bray family (wife of CEO Bill Bray and mother of CFO Scott Bray and COO Chad Bray) christened both boats by breaking the ceremonial bottles of champagne over the bows of the ships.

Carlisle & Bray Enterprises was created in March 2011 when Bray Marine, operated by the Bray family, merged with Greater Cincinnati Marine, operated by the Carlisle family. The company’s headquarters are in the Rivercenter I tower in Covington. It operates fleeting and docking facilities in Hebron, Ludlow, and Silver Grove on the Ohio River and in Wilder on the Licking River.

-Staff report

Photos provided