News & Updates

Port Directors from Florida’s 15 Seaports Gather for Annual Meeting

President’s Message
By Michael Rubin, President and CEO

Port Director’s from Florida’s 15 seaports, along with leaders from the Florida Department of Transportation, U.S. Customs & Border Protection, and the Florida House of Representatives, gathered in Panama City recently for the Florida Ports Council’s Annual Meeting, and the Florida Seaports Transportation and Economic Development Council Annual Meeting.

It was the first opportunity that we’ve been able to gather in person since the onset of COVID-19, and it was so good to see the smiling faces of our colleagues. We had an opportunity to discuss the headwinds impacting our ports, and the tailwind opportunities to navigate beyond the pandemic.

Special thanks to all those that traveled to the Panhandle, and to our host port, Port Panama City and Port Director Alex King, for their hospitality. We appreciated the opportunity to tour Port Panama City, and see the tremendous growth and progress they’ve experienced over recent years.

In Case You Missed It:
Panama City Port Authority shares their massive growth with leaders from across Florida. (WMBB)

Representative Jay Trumbull, chair of the powerful House Appropriations Committee, encouraged Florida’s port leaders to push for more funding for port infrastructure, during remarks at the annual meeting.

With House and Senate committees this week beginning their first committee meetings in advance of the 2022 Legislative Session, Rep. Trumbull’s comments were well-timed as lawmakers begin mapping out budget priorities.

In Case You Missed It:
Florida House Budget Chairman Urges Efforts To Keep Ports Competitive (WJCT)

We are thankful for Rep. Trumbull’s support of Florida’s seaports, and were proud to honor him with the Florida Ports Council’s Seaport Champion Award recently.

Congratulations to the slate of officers elected to lead the Florida Ports Council. Jonathan Daniels, Port Everglades Chief Executive & Port Director, was elected Chair, and Carlos Buqueras, Port Manatee Executive Director, was elected Vice Chair. David Wirth, Marina and Port Manager for Port St. Pete, will continue in his position as Secretary/Treasurer. We look forward to their service and leadership guiding the Florida Ports Council over the next year.

As always, thank you for your leadership in helping ensure Florida’s global competitiveness.