Austal USA, Mobile, Ala., announced the departure of Rusty Murdaugh today. Murdaugh has resigned as president of Austal USA effective Aug. 30, 2023. 

He was named president in Sept. 2021 (after serving as acting president since Feb. 2021) and led Austal USA through significant changes that ushered in a period of unprecedented growth. 

Under his leadership, Austal USA completed the addition of steel shipbuilding capability to the Mobile shipyard, opening what shipyard officials call the most modern steel shipbuilding facility in the industry. 

The change led to major competitive awards in the U.S. Coast Guard Heritage-class offshore patrol cutter (OPC) program and the U.S. Navy ocean surveillance ship (TAGOS-25) program creating over $6 billion in new construction backlog. 

During his tenure, Austal USA also opened a waterfront ship repair facility in San Diego, greatly expanding the company’s repair business, and acquired property in Mobile that will facilitate the continued expansion of the Mobile shipyard.

“Rusty made a lasting impact on the company,” Austal Limited CEO Paddy Gregg said in a statement announcing Murdaugh’s departure. “The transformation and growth of Austal USA under his leadership has postured the company for the future with a diversified and balanced portfolio. Rusty is leaving Austal USA with unlimited growth potential, and we thank him for all his hard work and dedication over the last two years.” 

Michelle Kruger, Austal USA vice president of global services and support, has been named acting president until a successor is named.


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