Innovation and Diversity

in Marine Design

The SAGE Team


Left to right: Hans Muhlert, Rollie Webb, Rob Allan, Ken Harford, Fuzz Alexander

There comes a time in the life of a naval architect or engineer when he/she realizes that it is important to share their lifetime of experience with the next, much younger and probably brighter generation!

At Robert Allan Ltd., we are extremely fortunate to have a cadre of such people who offer their individual and collective lifetimes of ship design, engineering and shipbuilding knowledge and experience to help guide the next generations of talented young engineers and designers in our office. This group is known as our SAGE team, named to not only reflect their combined experience and sagacity, but also because collectively they are Some Awfully Good Engineers!

Robert G. Allan, P.Eng., FEC, FRINA, FSNAME

Executive Chairman of the Board

Rob has spent his 44 year career aiming to always design the best tugboats afloat. Although his experience has included many different vessel types, his first love in this field is the tugboat. Currently he is actively supporting company management in a variety of special projects and with the mentoring of younger staff at Robert Allan Ltd.

A graduate of the University of Glasgow (1971), he is a Registered Professional Engineer in British Columbia, a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Naval Architects, (UK) and a Fellow of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (USA, Canada).

He has won many significant industry awards including:

  • SNAME Taylor Medal – 2005 – The David W. Taylor Medal from the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers, “for notable achievements in naval architecture”. He is the only Canadian ever to be so honoured.
  • RINA Small Craft Group Medal – 2005 – Awarded by the Royal Institution of Naval Architects in the UK, “for his contribution to the field of workboat design, and in particular for his innovative work in the development of tugboats for all types of operations”.
  • S.S. Beaver Medal – awarded by the Maritime Museum of British Columbia “for significant contributions to the maritime industry of B.C.”.
  • Joseph H. Linnard prize (2x) for best paper presented to the SNAME Annual Meeting (2000 and 2010).

Fuzz Alexander, P.Eng.

Senior Project Engineer

Fuzz holds a B.A.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering (1965) from the University of Saskatchewan. He has over 45 years of design and project engineering experience with electrical and mechanical systems for power generation and mechanical drive equipment applied in land-based and marine projects.

Fuzz joined Robert Allan Ltd. in 2005 as Senior Project Engineer. Prior to that, he was the Principal at a private consulting firm specializing in application of electrical and mechanical systems applied to power generation and marine propulsion projects. He was also a contract employee to various consulting and equipment manufacturing firms in British Columbia.

Fuzz is a registered Professional Engineer in BC.

Rollie Webb

Senior Vice President

Rollie joined Robert Allan Ltd. in 2008 and assumed duties as Senior Vice President in 2015.

Rollie has over 40 years of experience in marine engineering, starting out in ship operations as a Marine Engineer at sea, followed by 32 years of shipyard experience in Canada and the US in ship repair and ship construction, including Production, Project, General and Executive Management roles. He also has extensive experience in the operation, repair and construction of icebreakers.

Rollie graduated from the Canadian Coast Guard College in 1974.

Hans F. Muhlert, P.Eng., MSNAME

Senior Project Director

Hans joined Robert Allan Ltd. in 1970, and for many of the ensuing years was the director of naval architecture activities in the office. He specializes in concept ship design and propulsion system analysis, guiding new projects and supporting the management team with project supervision and mentoring of younger staff.

Hans has a B.Sc. in Engineering (Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering) from the University of Michigan (1968). He is a Registered Professional Engineer in British Columbia and a Fellow of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (USA, Canada).

Ken Harford, P.Eng., FEC, MSNAME, MCIMarE


After graduating from the University of British Columbia as a mechanical engineer in 1970, Ken established a noise and vibration consulting engineering company, then a z-drive steering system manufacturer, and finally a Z-Peller distributorship that all remain as successful companies today. Since joining Robert Allan Ltd in 1988, he has been instrumental in the development of our designs as leaders in minimizing onboard noise and vibration.

Ken became President of Robert Allan Ltd. in 2008, when the company transitioned to employee-ownership and he helped to set a bold course for the long-term future of the company. Ken retired from Robert Allan Ltd. in May 2016, but remains an active member of the Board of Directors.

You can also learn about our management, naval architecture, engineering, and administration teams. For more information on staff appointments, see News.