Alan J. Freedman Memorial Leadership Award

Recipients of the NMMA Freedman Award are individuals who, in the course of their careers, have made outstanding contributions to the marine accessories industry through leadership, creativity, and personal motivation.  The following are the categories for consideration:
• Marine aftermarket or OEM manufacturer
• Marine representative
• Member of a marine-focused media
• Boat dealer
• Marine distributor
• Marine trade association staff person


Nominations to the 2025 awards program will open Summer 2024.

To nominate a worthy industry leader:

  • Nominators must belong to a member company and be in good standing with NMMA.
  • Submit the official nomination form.
  • Submit supporting material to enhance the nomination. Supporting material includes, but not limited to; an enhanced career timeline and accomplishments, articles about the nominee and letters of support. Supporting materials should be received digitally through the provided file share link by the entry deadline.

Nominators will be notified of award status in January 2025.


The 2025 Alan J. Freedman Award will be presented during the Miami Industry Breakfast at the Miami Beach Convention Center. Tickets are required for entry.


Contact: Rachel Harmon
Email: [email protected]


View past recipients of this prestigious award.

2011: Ed McKiernan, Dometic Corporation

Ed McKiernan

The National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) honored Ed McKiernan, former president of Dometic Corporation’s Sanitation Division, with the 2012 Alan J. Freedman Memorial Leadership Award. McKiernan received the award today at the Annual State of the Recreational Boating Industry Breakfast held at the Progressive Insurance Miami International Boat Show & Strictly Sail.

NMMA’s Accessory Manufacturers Division (AMD) introduced the Freedman Award in 1984 to recognize individuals who, throughout the course of their careers, have made outstanding contributions to the marine accessories industry through leadership, creativity and personal motivation.
Prior to his retirement from Dometic in 2011, McKiernan spent more than 40 years in the marine industry, including at the helm of SeaLand Technology and most recently Dometic Corporation’s Sanitation Division. Throughout his career he has been a champion for responsible waste management in recreational boating and led working groups, written guidance papers, spoken at international conferences and utilized every opportunity to build support for the value of clean water to the boating industry.
“In addition to Ed’s achievements in marine sanitation product development, his commitment to raising clean water awareness has had a significant impact on recreational boating,” said Greg Lentine, president of Norcross Marine Products and Chairman of NMMA’s AMD Board of Directors. “He’s a true innovator in our industry and developed complete onboard toilet systems that operate with no inconvenience to the boat owner while protecting the marine environment.”
Perhaps McKiernan’s greatest contribution to the marine industry was his leadership of NMMA’s Facilities Development Committee during the time Congress passed the Clean Vessel Act in 1992. His efforts were instrumental in helping this legislation get passed—the result being public and private marinas having the opportunity to apply for grant funding for the installation of dockside pump equipment.
Since the inception of the Clean Vessel Act, the grant program has funded more than 6,000 pump-out and dump stations each year. More than $200 million in grants have been funded by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service through the Clean Vessel Act to date.
“Ed McKiernan is a marine industry leader who, through visionary product development and relentless work in helping create practical and effective governmental legislation, has made outstanding contributions to both the pleasure boating public and the welfare of the marine environment from one unusual vantage point – the head,” said Frank Marciano, president of Dometic Group’s Marine Division.