Meet our Team.


Washington, DC

JWB Headshot-cropped (2).jpg

John W. Butler

President and CEO

John Butler was named President and CEO of the World Shipping Council (WSC) in August 2015 after serving as General Counsel for the association since 2010.

Prior to joining the World Shipping Council, John was a Partner in the Washington, D.C. law firm of Sher & Blackwell, where he served as outside counsel to the WSC. For almost two decades, he advised liner shipping companies and trade associations on regulatory, commercial, security, hazardous materials, environmental, contract and anti-trust issues.

He has represented the liner shipping industry in federal agency rulemakings, legislative activities, and federal court litigation on a broad range of security, environmental, regulatory and commercial matters.

Anne Kappel.jpg

Anne Marie Kappel

Vice President, Strategy

Anne Kappel is Vice President of Strategy, located in Washington, D.C. and is currently guiding the implementation of WSC’s organizational strategy and collaborating on effective communication and policy strategies.

Anne joined the World Shipping Council (WSC) from Maersk after spending more than twenty-five years working in liner shipping in a broad range of leadership roles. She has served WSC since 2005 in several roles building WSC’s identity, reputation, and expertise as it has grown to address new challenges on behalf of the industry.

Today, Anne is a respected industry thought leader whose advice and insight are valued by supply chain participants and policy members alike.


Lars Kjaer

Senior Vice President

Lars Kjaer has been with the World Shipping Council since its inception. Lars is involved in a multitude of safety-related and other regulatory matters and also deals with the OECD digital tax issues as far as shipping is concerned. Lars participates on behalf of WSC in meetings at the IMO regarding safety, transport of containers, dangerous goods and the Facilitation Convention. He is also chairman of ISO Technical Committee (TC 104) that is responsible for all container-related standards.

Prior to joining the World Shipping Council, Lars served as the Washington Representative for the Council of European and Japanese Shipowners' Associations (CENSA), following a career with the Royal Danish Embassy in Washington, D.C. and at the Danish Delegation to NATO, in Brussels.

Joe Kramek WSC.jpg

Joe Kramek

Director of U.S. Government Relations

Joe Kramek started as Director of U.S. Government Relations for WSC in March 2021.

Prior to the World Shipping Council, he has served as a U.S. Coast Guard commissioned officer for twenty-eight years, where he spent time at sea and as the Chief of Maritime, International, and Environmental Law. In this role, he led the U.S. Delegation to the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) Legal Committee.

Joe was detailed for two years to the Department of Justice as an Admiralty Trial Attorney. He was also selected as a Federal Executive Fellow at the Brookings Institution where he completed one of the first research projects on maritime cybersecurity at port facilities.


Patty Volonakis

Office Manager

Patty Volonakis has been with the World Shipping Council since it was created in 2000. Prior to joining WSC, she worked for Gannett as an Administrative Coordinator in the Information Technology department.

She previously spent six years at the United Way of the National Capital Area in Washington, D.C. Patty holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Human Resources Management from the University of Maryland.

Wood-Thomas Bryan-WSC 46961-52.jpg

Bryan Wood-Thomas

Vice President, Environmental Policy

Bryan Wood-Thomas joined the Council in 2008 to lead efforts on environment and climate throughout the liner shipping industry.

Before joining the Council, Bryan served as the Associate Director of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Office of Transportation and Air Quality. Prior to that, Bryan served as the Marine Program Director in EPA's Office of International Environmental Policy where he worked as the lead U.S. negotiator for a number of environmental-oriented international treaties.

He has chaired several negotiating efforts undertaken at the International Maritime Organization (IMO), and has received numerous awards for his role in forging agreement on a series of controversial regulatory issues. He holds degrees from the State University of New York, Syracuse University, and Harvard University.



James Corbett

Environmental Director, Europe

James Corbett (P.E., Ph.D.) is Environmental Director, Europe, located in Brussels. He works with WSC colleagues and members on the very full environmental agenda built around the EU Green Deal initiative. James joined WSC in April 2021.

James is a leading expert on vessel air emissions and transportation environmental policy, came to WSC from a position as Professor at the University of Delaware and research consultant. He is a Principal at the Energy and Environmental Research Associates (EERA) and a widely published scholar who has conducted technology-policy research related to transportation, including ground-breaking research on air emissions from maritime transport, energy and environmental impacts of freight transportation, and assessment of technological and policy strategies for improving goods movement.


Anna Larsson

Communications Director

Anna Larsson is Communications Director at the World Shipping Council as of October 2020, responsible for WSC communications globally.

Prior to joining the World Shipping Council, Ms. Larsson served as Head of Corporate Communications, VP, for Wallenius Wilhelmsen ASA and has held several senior communication, marketing and sustainability roles for the company over the past decade. 

With over 25 years’ experience in international communication and sustainability, Ms Larsson holds a Master’s in Business and Marketing from Lund University and a post-graduate degree in Journalism from the University of Gothenburg. She has also certified as a “One Planet Leader” by WWF and IMD. Her professional background includes management positions within Corporate Communications at Akzo Nobel in Sweden and the Netherlands.


Damian Viccars

Brussels Representative

Damian Viccars joined the World Shipping Council as its Brussels Representative in 2012 and leads WSC’s governmental cooperation and advocacy in the European Union, liaising with the key EU Institutions of the Commission, Parliament and the Council representing Member States.

Damian has been working in EU public affairs since 2001, developing expertise in EU political developments as well as in transport, customs and cargo security policies in particular.  During this time he has also gained substantial experience working with UN bodies involved in transport and logistics including the ILO, UNECE and WCO. A dual national UK / Belgian citizen, he holds a BA Honours degree in War Studies and History from Kings College, University of London and speaks English and French.


Kenneth Chia  Headcrop.jpg

Ken Chia

Managing Director Asia

Ken Chia leads the WSC’s activity in Asia and is based in Singapore.

Ken has served most recently as Executive Director of the Singapore Maritime Foundation after spending more than 25 years at Neptune Orient Lines (NOL) and APL in several senior leadership roles with a primary emphasis in commercial and trade management.

Ang Shi En_4_3.jpg

Ang Shi En

Senior Executive

John Bradshaw_WSC (2).jpg

John Bradshaw

Technical Director for Environment and Safety

John Bradshaw is Technical Director for Environment and Safety as of May 2021, a global role located in Singapore. In addition to supporting environmental work at the IMO and the EU, John adds to WSC capabilities in the Asia Pacific region on both environmental and safety matters.

John is a maritime regulatory specialist and marine engineer with a broad range of senior level experience with maritime engineering, technical and policy matters, including representing the shipping industry at the International Maritime Organization (IMO). In his previous position as Technical Director at the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), his work has focused on climate change mitigation measures and emissions to air.

Mun Wei Jun WSC.jpg

Mun Wei Jun

Senior Manager

Mun Wei Jun leads Public Affairs in Asia and work closely with the Communications Director to develop and implement the WSC communications strategy throughout Asia.

Wei Jun has a solid public policy background with focus on environmental, innovation and labour issues, most recently working for the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore where he, among other duties, represented Singapore at the International Maritime Organisation and the International Labour Organisation

Ang Shi En works closely with the Managing Director, Asia to support the Singapore office’s role to assist member carriers and national industry associations on regulatory matters affecting liner shipping.

Shi En joins WSC from the Singapore Maritime Foundation, where she worked for four years, playing a key role in the development of the Maritime Singapore Connect office.