Friday, June 13, 2014

LA City Council Confirms Port Director

By Mark Edward Nero

The Los Angeles City Council unanimously confirmed veteran shipping industry leader Gene Seroka as the new executive director of the Port of Los Angeles on June 11. He replaces former Executive Director Geraldine Knatz, who retired in late 2013.

Seroka’s nomination was unanimously approved by the port’s Harbor Commission on June 5.
“The Los Angeles trade gateway is a vital force in our nation’s economy,” Seroka said. “I am honored to lead the team dedicated to making this powerful engine the most competitive, efficient and sustainable source of prosperity for the benefit of both our region and U.S. international trade.”

Seroka has more than 25 years of experience in shipping, global logistics and executive management. Most recently, he was Head of Commercial in the Americas Region for American President Lines (APL) Limited. Seroka joined APL, a wholly owned subsidiary of Singapore-based Neptune Orient Lines (NOL), in 1988 as a sales support representative.

Among those testifying on Seroka’s behalf before the City Council was Michele Grubbs, vice president of the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association.

“In a hyper competitive business environment, choosing Gene is a clear affirmation that the port of Los Angeles is customer-focused and committed to retaining its standing as the No. 1 container port in the United States,” Grubbs, told the Council.

“Gene Seroka is a dynamic, seasoned executive with all the right knowledge and skills to seize the opportunities and navigate the challenges of a fiercely competitive industry and ensure the Port of Los Angeles continues to thrive as a global leader in international trade,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, who nominated Seroka for the position on May 27, after a global search to fill the position.