Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Sramek Named to 2nd Term as Long Beach Port Board President

Following a first term that witnessed major environmental successes and a growing recovery in cargo traffic, Port of Long Beach Harbor Commissioner Nick Sramek has been re-elected by his fellow board members to a second one-year term as president of the commission.

Sramek, a lifetime Long Beach resident and long-time community activist, was first appointed to the Harbor Commission by Mayor Bob Foster in 2007. An aerospace engineer by profession, Sramek served on the City of Long Beach Planning Commission for seven years prior to his Harbor Commission appointment.

The five-member Harbor Commission sets policy for the port, which with the neighboring Port of Los Angeles comprises the busiest container port complex in the Western Hemisphere. Port commissioners, who can serve up to two six-year terms, are nominated by the mayor and confirmed by the City Council. Each June, the commissioners self-elect each other to one-year terms in various officer roles on the board.

Sramek is only the second Long Beach commissioner to be named to successive terms as commission president.

During his past year as president of the Harbor Commission, Sramek has led the board in adopting major environmental, business and administrative policy programs that have tried to balance the port's declared stewardship of the local environment while retaining and attracting additional business to the port.

He described his method of leadership shortly after being appointed to the port board in 2007.

"My engineering background says I want to learn, take in data and really inform myself before I come to any conclusions," Sramek told the Long Beach Press-Telegram. "From there, I vote on what my heart and instinct tell me."

Even before taking the reigns as commission president for the first time last year, Sramek was a key voice in one of the port's major environmental programs--the Clean Truck Program.

The program, implemented in October 2008, was originally developed in conjunction with the Port of Los Angeles in 2006 and 2007 to reduce diesel emission from ports-servicing trucks. However, after Los Angeles port official became adamant on including social engineering aspects in the plan, such as mandating that all truck drivers servicing the ports be employees and give up their independent owner-operator status (one enjoyed by more than 80-percent of the ports-servicing drivers), the Long Beach port board parted ways with their Los Angeles counterparts in early 2008.

In addition to Sramek's re-appointment as commission president, commissioner Susan Anderson Wise, who joined the board in 2008, was selected as Vice President. Dr. Mike Walter, who has served on the commission since 2005, was named Secretary; while Mario Cordero, appointed to the commission in 2003 and re-appointed in 2009, was named Vice Secretary.

All new commission terms officially start July 1.