Processing Your Payment

Please do not leave this page until complete. This can take a few moments.

September 27, 2023

Longtime leader of Casco Bay Lines will retire in December

Ferry travelling on Casco Bay File Photo / Jim Neuger In a typical year, Casco Bay Lines' five ferries transport more than 1 million passengers and 30,000 vehicles. The Machigonne II shuttles both between the Portland waterfront and Peaks Island.

After nearly 14 years steering the ferry service through some of the most significant changes in its history, Casco Bay Lines' general manager, Hank Berg, will retire Dec. 1.

The Casco Bay Island Transit District's board of directors will begin a public process to hire a successor, according to a news release. The board plans to provide more details about the search at a meeting Thursday.

Berg will continue in his current role and assist with the transition, the board said. No further information was available Wednesday morning and Berg did not immediately respond to questions from Mainebiz.

File Photo / Tim Greenway
Hank Berg, shown in 2010 after joining Casco Bay Lines as general manager.

Casco Bay Lines is a year-round service connecting the Portland waterfront and seven nearby islands. CBL transports more than 1 million passengers, 35,000 vehicles and 500,000 pieces of freight annually.

The fleet currently includes five vessels, with capacities that range of 297 to 399 passengers. A new ferry is under construction and due to begin service next June. It will replace the 36-year-old Machigonne II, which carries passengers and vehicles to and from Peaks Island.

Casco Bay Lines recently completed a three-phase, decade-long expansion of its terminal on the Maine State Pier in Portland. The original terminal was built in 1988 and designed to accommodate only half the current passenger volumes.

The ferry service is one of the oldest in the country, tracing its roots to wooden steamers that carried summer visitors nearly 150 years ago.

When the original Casco Bay Lines declared bankruptcy in 1981, the Maine Legislature created the Casco Bay Island Transit District, a quasi-municipal, nonprofit corporation, to take over service.

Berg joined CBL in January 2010, bringing several years of business experience and some nautical knowledge — he owned two boats and held a recreational lobstering license. But he had no background or familiarity with marine transportation.

However, he quickly learned the ropes by moving to a rented house on Peaks Island for several months. “Living on Peaks and experiencing the ferry and island life, I’m realizing just how dependent islanders are on the ferry,” he told Mainebiz at the time.

Sign up for Enews

Related Content


Order a PDF