The Chris-Craft Team


Stephen Julius, Chairman

Stephen M. Julius, Chairman of Chris-Craft Corporation, is also founder and managing director of Stellican Ltd., a private equity firm based in London. The firm focuses on investments in re-launching companies with well known brands. To date, those investments have been concentrated in the United Kingdom, Italy and the United States.

In addition to the purchase of Chris-Craft Corporation in 2001, Stellican Ltd. also owned Indian Motorcycle, the oldest motorcycle brand in America, Riva SpA, a luxury boat building company in Italy, and Vicenza Calcio, a premier football team in the Serie A.

Stephen holds both a bachelor's and master's degree in Classics from Magdalen College at Oxford University. He also has a Master of Business Administration from Harvard University's Graduate School of Business.




Stephen Heese, President and CEO

Stephen F. Heese, President and CEO of Chris-Craft Corporation, and partner of Stellican Limited, the British Investment firm led by Stephen Julius.

Prior to Chris-Craft, Steve spent twelve years at Erico International Corporation in a variety of roles, including Managing Director of the Europe, Asia and Australia regions, President of Erico Products Australia Ltd., and Vice-President of Sales & Marketing for Erico Fastening Systems. Steve also spent three years at Price Waterhouse in Tampa as a member of the management consulting group.

Originally from Tampa, Steve has a bachelor's degree in accounting from Tulane University and a master's degree in business administration from Harvard University's Graduate School of Business. He is a Certified Public Accountant and an active member of the AICPA and FICPA.




Earl Blackwell, Vice President of Manufacturing

In 2011, Earl Blackwell joined Chris-Craft as Vice President of Manufacturing and brought with him over 39 years of marine manufacturing experience. Earl’s continuous improvement initiatives and lean manufacturing practices help to ensure that Chris-Craft maintains its competitive advantage in the global marine marketplace.

Some of Earl’s previous positions include; Vice President of Manufacturing at Chaparral Boats and Four Winns Boats, Executive Vice President of Island Packet Yachts, Vice President of Wellcraft Marine, Vice President of Manufacturing & General Manager at Morgan Marine. Earl earned a BS degree from the University of Texas and has graduate studies at the Universidad de Madrid and the University of Texas in Mechanical Engineering.






Jeff Ellis, Vice President of Sales & Marketing

Jeff Ellis joined Chris-Craft in 2007 to head the company’s Sales and Marketing departments and is currently responsible for strategic sales in over 35 countries world-wide. Jeff has worked his entire professional career in the powerboat industry and brings to Chris-Craft over 33 years of experience in engineering, product development and sales.

Prior positions that Jeff has held include; Engineering Manager, Sea Ray Yacht Division, Sea Ray Product Development and Engineering Materials Manager and Vice President of Sales Sea Ray Sport Yacht & Yacht Divisions.






Chris Collier, Vice President of Engineering

Chris Collier comes to Chris-Craft as a 5th generation boat designer. Chris’s great-great grandfather, W.T. Collier, built shallow water schooners for cargo deliveries from Tampa to Key West in the late 1800’s. Currently serving Chris-Craft as Vice President of Engineering, Chris is directly responsible for design, new product development and quality control. Chris has 30 years’ experience in the marine industry and was the Director of Design and Engineering for Donzi Marine and was a Designer for Wellcraft Marine.

Chris also has the distinction of having several of his designs featured in television and film and has won several awards for design excellence in PowerBoat Magazine. Chris also served in the United States Coast Guard.





Steve Callahan, Vice President of Materials

Steve Callahan joined the Chris-Craft team in 2003 as the Vice President of Materials. He has been in the marine industry for 36 years and is currently responsible for Purchasing, Materials Management, Warehouse Operations, Production Planning and Transportation Logistics.

Steve’s prior experience includes, Vice President of Materials at Wellcraft Marine, Vice President of Purchasing at Genmar Industries, and Corporate Commodity Purchasing Manager at Sea Ray Boats.








Mark Poncin, Chief Financial Officer

Mark Poncin has been Chief Financial Officer of Chris-Craft since 2001. In the previous 20 years, he worked in roles such as Business Unit Director, Acting CEO & CFO, VP of Operations and Controller at Kimball Electronics, Schlosser Forge, I was Framed, Inc., and Bell + Howell. His background is primarily with manufacturing companies in boating, electronics, metal fabrication, consumer products and aerospace.

Besides his financial background, Mark has extensive background in information management, quality control and manufacturing systems. Mark has a BS degree in Accounting from The Ohio State University and a MBA from Pepperdine University.