Obituary – Mr. Andy Fuller



It is with deep sadness the Director General of IMSO informs that the Organization’s former Deputy Director General Mr. Andrew Clement Fuller passed away on 25th April 2020, aged 70, after contracting coronavirus.

Mr. Fuller was a key member of the Organization for many years and his commitment to working towards safety of navigation and communication was eminent throughout his career, serving as an inspiration for many others in the field. He had been a well-known figure in the maritime world, in particular within the IMO and IMSO arena. He started his career in the British Royal Navy in 1967 and served for ten years at sea as a hydrographic surveyor and commanded a Royal Navy ship.  In 1977, he joined the civilian staff at the UK Hydrographic Office to work on maritime safety information and navigational warning broadcasts.  He led the development and international implementation of NAVTEX and the International SafetyNET Service. His contributions to navigation were recognised in 1992 as he was elected into the Royal Institute for Navigation.

In 1993, Mr. Fuller joined the International Mobile Satellite Organization (Inmarsat) – which was an intergovernmental organization (IGO) at that time, prior to privatisation – and worked on the development of the SafetyNET service before becoming Manager of the Maritime and Maritime Safety Services Departments.

Mr. Fuller left Inmarsat IGO at the time of privatisation in March 1999 to lead a new company, Marineworks Ltd, offering high level policy and operational consultancy services throughout the world in the fields of maritime communications, navigation and safety.

In late 1999, he was offered the position of Head of Technical Services for the International Mobile Satellite Organization (IMSO), in order to oversee the public services provided by the newly established company Inmarsat.  In that position, he played a leading role in the evolution of IMSO and the principles for the provision of satellite-based safety communications for ships and aircraft worldwide.  He also led the development and implementation of the auditing functions for the IMO Long Range Identification and Tracking (LRIT) project after which he was appointed Deputy Director General of IMSO in 2008.

In recognition of his key role in the development of mobile satellite service (MSS) based safety services, he received the “MSUA Pioneer Award” from the Mobile Satellite Users Association in 2013.

Following his retirement, in August 2014, the IMSO Assembly at its twenty-third session, taking into account his extensive service to advance and promote the work of the Organization, adopted Resolution A.003(23) to put on record its deep gratitude and sincere appreciation to Mr. Fuller for his professionalism, dedication and contribution to furthering the capability, aims and objectives of the Organization.

Even during his retirement, Mr. Fuller also worked as the Special Advisor to the Director General for the assessment of the Iridium Satellite System for GMDSS recognition.

Mr. Fuller’s loss will be felt heavily by all at IMSO and by the wider maritime community, but his legacy will remain ever-present with the Organization. Our thoughts are with his family and friends during this painful time.