SEMA President Britto’s Year-end Report

At this time of year, our mailboxes are often flooded with year-end appeals from the various organizations we support, including SEMA. This year, however, things are a little different here, and so we are not asking you for a year-end contribution.

We are preparing for a major capital campaign in the spring, which has been kick-started by the Hildreth Stewart Charitable Foundation, led by SEMA Vice President Bob Hildreth. He announced earlier this year that the Foundation will provide $700,000 toward the repairs to Ernestina, with the conditions that SEMA will raise $700,000 in matching funds and that the ship will be operated as an educational enterprise.

And, there are more exciting developments to report:

•  Through the generosity of SEMA’s donors, we were able to purchase a new foremast for the ship last summer, and the rigging is currently being repaired.

•   In addition to the $700,000 challenge gift, other substantial donors from across the globe have come forward and expressed an interest in ensuring a sustained, lively (sailing!) future for Ernestina.

•  The agencies and organizations committed to her stewardship (including DCR, the Ernestina Commission and the National Park Service) are working collaboratively and have made great progress this year positioning Ernestina to take advantage of funding and operational opportunities.
•  SEMA recently developed a “Vision Statement,” which clearly articulates our plan for the ship.  The main focus of the vision is that Ernestina will be an educational service provider in and around Massachusetts, reborn in the best way possible within the next two years.
Please visit to read the “Vision Statement” in its entirety and share it on your social networks.

Because of these developments, I feel more secure about Ernestina’s future today than I did three years ago when SEMA began this journey. While this is not an appeal, if you had planned to give SEMA a 2012 tax-deductible donation, we will most gratefully receive it at or by mail at the address listed below.

Thank you for your continued support and for being a voice for Ernestina, our national treasure.
Wishing you and yours a joyous holiday season,

Julius Britto
President, Schooner Ernestina-Morrissey Association

P.O. Box 2995

New Bedford, MA  02741