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Nautical Archeology

Loren Steffy is one of the most acclaimed and successful journalists produced by Texas A&M. During his time spent as a business writer with the Houston Chronicle, he broke and investigated two stories of national and global importance: the collapse of Enron and the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Steffy’s father was also an extraordinary individual. J. Richard “Dick” Steffy launched Texas A&M’s internationally-renowned Nautical Archeology program at the A&M Research Annex.

Dick Steffy is recognized as the first person to reconstruct an ancient ship from its sunken remains. From a harborside castle in Cyprus, he meticulously pieced together what came to be known as the Kyrenia Ship, “the first ship in human history to be built twice.”

Loren Steffy wrote a book about his father called, The Man Who Thought Like A Ship. In it, son writes about father:

“He had volunteered for the job even though he had no qualifications for it. For twenty-five years he had been an electrician in a small, landlocked town in Pennsylvania. He held no advanced degrees-his understanding of ships was entirely self-taught. Yet he would find himself half a world away from his home town, planning to reassemble a ship that last sailed during the reign of Alexander the Great.”

The work ultimately led Dick Steffy to an appointment onto the Department of Anthropology faculty at Texas A&M. 

Loren Steffy remembers his father’s time at the Research Annex exploring new frontiers and passing along to students a great passion for his work.


Loren Steffy is a managing director for the communications firm 30 Point Strategies, a writer-at-large for Texas Monthly and the executive producer for Rational Middle Media. His writing has been published in newspapers and other publications nationwide. He has appeared on CNBC, Fox Business, MSNBC, the BBC and the PBS NewsHour. Before joining the Chronicle, he was the Dallas bureau chief and a senior writer for Bloomberg News for 12 years. He holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from Texas A&M University and lives in Wimberley, Texas.