Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Seattle Commission Formally Appoints Port CEO

By Mark Edward Nero

The Port of Seattle Commission on Sept. 11 voted to formally appoint Ted J. Fick as the port’s new Chief Executive Officer; his selection was announced in August. Fick officially takes over for the retiring Tay Yoshitani on Sept. 29.

“I am ready to dig in to the complex competitive challenges facing the port – and to working with such a skilled team of commissioners, executives and staff. I look forward to all that we will accomplish together,” Fick said.

Fick has over 25 years of leadership experience in major manufacturing and transportation organizations – including oversight of international operations. He spent many years working in the Puget Sound region’s manufacturing and industrial community, beginning at his family’s Tacoma-based company, Fick Foundry. He then spent many years with one of the Pacific Northwest’s primary manufacturers, PACCAR, holding leadership positions in both PACCAR and their Kenworth division.

He left the Pacific Northwest in 2000, and has since held multiple leadership positions in transportation and manufacturing companies. Most recently, he served as CEO of Polar Corp., a $475 million trailer and component parts manufacturer in Minnesota. In that job, he oversaw three operating divisions, multiple manufacturing plants and a workforce of over 2,000 represented and non-represented employees.

Commissioners said they were excited to see how his expertise in successfully guiding organizations through changing competitive environments will bring new ideas and energy to the port.

“Ted understands and appreciates the challenges facing the port,” Commission Co-President Courtney Gregoire said. “He also immediately demonstrated to us where he saw opportunities within those challenges, opportunities for making the port stronger and more competitive and for generating new jobs and growth for our region.”