About Us


Our Heritage

"Since 1958 our message and commitment have remained the same and will continue to, for generations to come...."

Meet Our Engineering Team

We are the only company in the world that is devoted exclusively to the design, manufacture and support of shiplift and transfer systems.


Raymond Pearlson

Inventor of the Modern Shiplift System (which he patented and called "Syncrolift")

In 1953, while employed by a small Florida shipyard, Raymond Pearlson, a Naval Architect and Marine Engineer, was given responsibility for the construction of a traditional 300-ton lifting capacity boat lift and transfer system. His experience building this facility gave Mr. Pearlson the opportunity to develop an innovative drydocking concept using simple electro-mechanical components. In 1957, Mr. Pearlson built the first shiplift for a nearby shipyard and in 1958, formed his own company, Pearlson Engineering Company, Inc. (PECO), to further the development of his invention. For the next 20 years Raymond Pearlson traveled the world to introduce his shiplift and transfer system invention to the marine industry. In 1979, he sold his company to Northern Engineering Industries (NEI), a British engineering group that in 1989 became part of Rolls-Royce, plc.

Among the awards received by Mr. Pearlson is the prestigious 2002 Elmer A. Sperry Award; “In recognition of a distinguished engineering contribution which, through application proved in actual service, has advanced the art of transportation whether by land, sea or air.”


Douglas Pearlson

Founder of Pearlson Shiplift Corporation

Douglas began working at Pearlson Engineering Company (PECO) in 1967 while attending the University of Michigan. After graduating with a degree in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering, Douglas joined the firm full time in 1971. He progressed through various positions in engineering, sales, marketing, administration and management. In 1973 he established PECO’s European office in London. After returning to Miami in 1975 he was promoted to Executive Vice-President and became General Manager in 1978.

In 1979, following PECO’s acquisition by Northern Engineering Industries, he was promoted to President of Pearlson Engineering Company and named to the Board of Directors of NEI Clarke Chapman Ltd. During his tenure as President of PECO, Douglas was responsible for the design, installation and ongoing servicing of shiplifts, caisson lifts, ferry ramps and transfer systems in over 60 countries, including two 25,000-ton shiplifts and transfer systems for nuclear submarines in England and Scotland.

In 1990, after leaving NEI, Douglas co-founded Pearlson & Pearlson Incorporated, a shipyard consultancy specializing in drydocking and transfer systems. In 2008, when Rolls-Royce closed the Miami headquarters of their shiplift division, Douglas founded Pearlson Shiplift Corporation and recruited his team of former PECO shiplift engineers and technical support specialists to respond to requests from shiplift owners and operators to expand and support their shipyard and ferry ramp facilities with new shiplift equipment, spare parts, training and inspection services.

Douglas Pearlson is a member of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (NA&ME), the University of Michigan’s NA&ME Advisory Board and a former member of the Sea Foundation of the University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine Sciences. He serves on the Dry Dock Standards Committee of the Coasts, Oceans, Ports and Rivers Institute (COPRI) of the American Society of Civil Engineers and is a member of Lloyd’s Register Technical Sub Committee for Lifting Appliances. In 2018, he received the NA&ME Alumni Merit Award from the University of Michigan, College of Engineering.


Kelly Pearlson Fraind

VP, Engineering & Project Management

Kelly Pearlson Fraind, the granddaughter of Raymond Pearlson and daughter of Douglas Pearlson, joined the Pearlson Shiplift Corporation (PSC) team in 2008. Kelly has a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from the University of Florida, and she currently leads the Project Management and Engineering Teams for PSC.

Over the last 12 years, Kelly has overseen the Project Management and Engineering efforts for ten (10) new build shiplift projects, including Marina Barcelona 92, RMK Merrill-Stevens, and more.


Jean-Francois Collart

Senior Design Engineer

Jean-Francois began work at Rolls-Royce’s shiplift division in 1997 as a full-time Design Engineer, responsible for the structural and mechanical design of Shiplift & Transfer Systems. In 1999, Jean-Francois was promoted to Design Manager where his expertise in Articulated Shiplift Systems was expanded and he was also tasked with completing site installation, start-up, commissioning and load testing of equipment.

Following his success as the Design Manager of the Rolls-Royce shiplift division, Jean-Francois was promoted to the Chief Engineer position in 2004, leading the shiplift and transfer system product category.

Jean-Francois has more than 20+ years of experience in the design, build, and commissioning of Articulated Shiplift & Transfer Systems around the World.


Omar A. Dume

Senior Electrical Engineer

Omar joined the Pearlson Shiplift Corporation (PSC) team in 2013, after having spent the previous 10 years as a Controls Engineer for Draw Bridges, Lock Systems, and Dams. Over the course of his tenure, Omar successfully commissioned more than 40 projects which incorporated VFD and PLC control systems, which included HMIs. Since joining PSC in 2013, Omar has led the electrical design for 10+ new-build shiplift installations, as well as more than 50+ control upgrade projects. This included being the Chief Electrical Engineer for the Faslane Nuclear Infrastructure Upgrade Project (FNICAP), for Her Majesty’s Royal Navy, located at HMNB Clyde.

Omar has performed on-site testing, training and commissioning for shiplift installations in the Middle East, Europe, the USA and Oceania.


George E. Green

Senior Field Engineer

George began work in the NEI Shiplift Business Unit in 1985 as a part-time employee, prior to becoming a full-time employee in 1989. George worked under the direction of his father, George M. Green (Through-Life Manager) who had joined the PECO team in 1978. George’s career began within the technical writing department where he was responsible for producing the Operation & Maintenance and Installation Manuals for the company. Following the completion of the Faslane Shiplift Project for nuclear submarines (HMNB Clyde), George began working in the Field Engineering Department with an emphasis on Controls and Commissioning of new Shiplift and Transfer System Installations.

In 2008, George took on the role of Senior Field Engineer within Pearlson Shiplift Corporation where he is the “Subject Matter Expert” for both new and existing shiplift and transfer system installations, with the specialty of all Field Engineering related support and services.

George has more than 35+ years of experience in the design, build, and commissioning of Articulated Shiplift Systems around the World.


Ryan J. Rhydderch

Senior Field Engineer

Ryan began work at the Peterhead Port Authority shiplift system in 2010, where he acted as the Ship Repair Foreman, and his responsibilities included operating and maintaining the shiplift and transfer system along side a model slipway and graving dock. Since joining Pearlson Shiplift Corporation in 2015, Ryan has completed several major projects in the USA, the Middle East, the Far East and Oceania, including upgrading both mechanical and electrical systems, carrying out inspections in over 25 countries, and commissioning new shiplift & transfer system installations.


Benjamin Tooker

Senior Field Engineer / Dockmaster

Ben began his career as a marine engineer with Defense Australia, where he spent most of his time on Collins Class Submarines, Submarine Escape Systems and Submarine Rescue Systems.

More recently, Ben completed several contracts as a project engineer, conducting modifications and repairs to mission support and alternative fuel ships in Southeast Asia. Prior to that, Ben served as the Senior Dockmaster at BAE Systems Australia for their shipyard in Henderson, Western Australia. During his tenure with BAE, he completed 300+ dockings of commercial and military vessels ranging in size from between 500 – 8,000 metric tons. Prior to BAE, Ben spent seven (7) years as a Project / Service Engineer with Rolls-Royce Syncrolift, supporting existing shiplift operators, and installing and commissioning new shiplifts for clients all around the World.

Ben brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the unrivaled Pearlson Shiplift team, and adds an invaluable local resource in Australia for our current and future customers.

Ben is married with two teenage children and a Labradoodle, and lives in Perth, WA. He enjoys motorcycles, shooting, fishing and watching Rugby.


Richard J. Shanks

Field Engineer

Richard began work on the Shiplift System at HMNB Clyde, as part of Her Majesty’s Royal Navy, in 1994. During this time, Richard was responsible for conducting extensive commissioning, testing and training on the shiplift system, in order to achieve the first nuclear use of the Shiplift facility. Following Richard’s time with the Royal Navy, he joined Rolls-Royce’s shiplift division in 2001 as a member of the Staged Improvement Program (SIP) executive board, responsible for the installation of modifications to the HMNB Clyde Shiplift control system, in order to meet Facility Safety Case (FCS) requirements.

Richard went on to join Rolls-Royce Naval Marine Inc. (RRNMI) as part of the shiplift team, with responsibilities which included commissioning of shiplift and transfer systems worldwide, installation of equipment, system start-up, load testing, and training of shipyard personnel.

Richard has more than 25+ years of experience in the design, build, and commissioning of both new Articulated Shiplift Systems and Control Upgrades around the World.


Laura Hamershock

Quality Management Lead

Laura joined the PSC team in 2017 as our Quality Management Lead, responsible for the development of our Quality Management System (QMS) in accordance with ISO 9001:2015.  Laura brings 15+ years experience developing Business & Quality Systems in the Maritime industry to PSC, previously working in Marine, Fleet Operations and Newbuilding departments for Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd.

The PSC QMS was certified by Lloyd’s Register for the ‘Design, Supply and Support of Shiplift and Transfer Systems Worldwide’ in 2019.