Yacht Starship’s Troy Manthey to Receive Captain James McKay Port Tampa Bay Achievement Award

- Captain Troy Manthey will be the 2023 recipient of the Captain James McKay Port Achievement award, which will be presented at this year’s Anchor Ball taking place on December 2, 2023. The award is given annually to an individual or group in recognition of their contribution over many years to Port Tampa Bay and the maritime community. Prior year recipients have included such prominent leaders who helped support the port’s development as George Lorton, the Barkett Family, Stephen Swindal, Shirley McKay Savage Knight, Captain Allen Thompson, Terry Fluke, George Steinbrenner, Joseph Garcia and Sam Gibbons. Troy Manthey is a dynamic and respected leader in our maritime community since he relocated the Yacht Starship to Tampa Bay in 2001. 

Captain Manthey took the helm of the Yacht Starship, shortly after its construction in 2000 in Biloxi, Mississippi.  He discovered Tampa in January 2001 when Yacht StarShip was chartered for the world-class annual Gasparilla Invasion/Celebration for Super Bowl weekend. Shortly afterward, he permanently relocated the Yacht StarShip to Tampa Bay’s vibrant Channelside entertainment district, now Sparkman Wharf, in Downtown Tampa. The Yacht Starship, now operates four luxury vessels in the Tampa Bay area, as well as the Lost Pearl, a pirate-themed ship, the Bay Rocket, Tampa Riverwalk Rentals and a new upscale dining river cruise named ‘Craft’. Additionally, in February 2016, Yacht Starship opened Pirate Water Taxi, LLC a daily water taxi service with 14 stops and seven taxis in Downtown Tampa. 

Since 2001, Captain Manthey has developed deep roots in Tampa Bay’s civic and business communities. He is a Leadership Tampa graduate 2003 who also serves on the Board of Directors for Visit Tampa Bay, Friends of the Riverwalk, Hillsborough County Hotel Motel Association, S.S. American Victory Museum Ship, Port of Tampa Maritime Industries Association and Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association Pinellas Chapter. He is the founder of the Tampa Attractions Association, which merged with Friends of the Riverwalk. The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce awarded Yacht StarShip Dining Cruises the 2016 Small Business of the Year in the 51-250 Employee category. Captain Manthey was awarded the Ambassador of the Year for tourism in Hillsborough County in 2017. He received the Parke Wright III award in 2021 from the Tampa Bay Chamber. 

Manthey holds a Captain’s license from the United States Coast Guard as Master (inland) and 1st Class Pilot – Any Gross Ton.  Manthey is a 5th generation Passenger Vessel Operator and Captain, whose family started in the Passenger Steamboat business in 1884. Captain Manthey currently resides in Tampa with his wife Jill and two sons Jack and Patrick, adult daughter Lindsey resides in New Orleans. 

This year's Anchor Ball will be held on Saturday, December 2, 2023 at the TPepin Hospitality Centre and is the annual gala event for the Port Tampa Bay maritime industry. Proceeds benefit two deserving causes: Tampa Port Ministries, which operates the Seafarers' Center, and the Tampa Bay Maritime Scholarship Foundation. The Seafarers’ Center, staffed by dedicated volunteers, serves the crews of visiting cargo and cruise ships by meeting the physical, social and spiritual needs of seafarers, who are often of modest means and spend months at sea away from their home and families. The Seafarers’ Center has risen to the challenges brought by the pandemic and been instrumental in getting thousands of visiting seafarers vaccinated against Covid-19. The Tampa Bay Maritime Scholarships assists high-achieving graduates of the Hillsborough County Maritime Technology Programs at Thomas Jefferson High School Magnet Honors Maritime Academy and other public institutions by providing meaningful scholarship support for post-high school education leading to maritime careers. The Tampa Bay Maritime Scholarship Foundation has provided the means to pursue educational opportunities for students at training centers and schools around the country. Since the organization began in 2015, it has awarded 39 total scholarships to 20 individual students, totally more than $270,000 in contributions.