COURTESY PHOTO
                                Outgoing American Association of Port Authorities Chairman Will Friedman passes the gavel to Port of Grays Harbor Executive Director Gary Nelson to begin his 1-year term as Chairman of the Board.

COURTESY PHOTO Outgoing American Association of Port Authorities Chairman Will Friedman passes the gavel to Port of Grays Harbor Executive Director Gary Nelson to begin his 1-year term as Chairman of the Board.

Nelson begins term as chairman of ports group that has a loud and international voice

Port of Grays Harbor Executive Director Gary Nelson officially began his role as chairman of board of the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) Oct. 16.

The organization is influential in capitals throughout the Americas.

It is “the unified and recognized voice of seaports throughout the Americas” and represents more than 130 public port authorities in the U.S., Canada, the Caribbean and Latin America, according to a statement from the Port of Grays Harbor.

“Trade, transportation and infrastructure unite our industry and the communities we serve,” said Nelson. “I look forward to working with AAPA’s membership and staff to bring awareness to our vital industry and help advance the important issues we face today.”

Nelson joined the Port of Grays Harbor in April 2000, with a background of private sector management, particularly in trading wood products throughout the Pacific Rim. Since joining the Port, Nelson has worked with customers, staff, state and federal agencies and the local community to position Grays Harbor as a major hub for international trade and economic development. During his tenure, the Port of Grays Harbor has experienced exponential growth in cargo shipments, private investments and business activity, read the Port statement.

“We applaud Gary’s commitment to serving the entire port industry and are confident he will be an asset to AAPA and its members over the next year,” said Port Commission President Stan Pinnick.

“As AAPA’s chairman for the 2019-20 activity year, Gary Nelson brings a unique and valuable perspective to the role,” said Chris Conner, the association’s President and CEO. “Gary’s a seasoned port administrator with an excellent management background in the private sector and proven abilities in the international trade arena. I’m excited to work with Gary in this next chapter of the association as we demonstrate to the public and policymakers the enormous economic impact of the port industry throughout the Western Hemisphere.”

Nelson will serve as chairman for a one-year term. He also chairs the association’s U.S. delegation.