The Holland America Line recipient of the Presidents Leadership award
Mr. Balthasar Rafales was born in Western Samar, the Phlippines. His father passed away when he was 9 years old, so on his 10th. He had find work to help support the family as he was nbr 4 child of a total of nine. He started training as a Tailor and was fully qualified on his 15th. As he always wanted to be a sailor, he decided to go to sea and joined Holland America as a tailor in
sept. 2000 on the Ryndam. Very quickly he switched jobs and became the ships printer. On the Prinsendam he was chosen as employee of the month in November 2004. Since then he has sailed on the Rotterdam and the Veendam where he received the Presidents leadership Award.
When not at sea, Balthasar lives with his family in South Cotabato in the Philippines in a small village called Polomolok. He is married to his wife Erly and has three children. One son named Baltazar Jr. and two Daughters Valerie and Vebien. His hobbyâ€™s are cooking for the family, playing basketball and chess but most of all spending quality time with the family.
He is leaving the Veendam on 18 November and after his leave will return to sea to join the Oosterdam on 30 April 2008.
Balthasar, who goes by the name of Balt on board, received his reward during the disembarkation talk when we had the crew farewell. As expected he received a standing ovation from our guests and caused a lot of envious eyes from all the whole TEAM Veendam behind him on the stage, when the $ 5000 cheque was presented.
Balt is a very worthy recipient as he is always doing a job that ranks under 125% list and he is capable to anticipate problems arising and even correct and or ring the bell when print requests are coming to his shop that are incomplete or do not make sense.
Congratulations to Balt.