The American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) honored Davis Helberg, Executive Director of the Duluth Seaway Port
Authority, with its ImPORTant Service Award
, during a September 26 luncheon at the AAPA’s 91st Annual Convention at the Breakers in Palm Beach, Florida.
“We honor Davis for his experience, knowledge, leadership, eloquence and dedication,” said Chairman of the Board Dick Steinke, Executive Director of the Port of Long Beach, who presented the award. “He is widely respected for his knowledge of the public port industry. Davis’ counsel and insights, and literary skills, are unmatched by anyone in our industry. Over these many years, Davis has served our industry tirelessly and with dignity, both as a colleague and a friend.”
Individual recipients must have served on one or more of AAPA's technical or policy committees for a minimum of ten years, two years as a committee chairman, and have ten years of port management experience
. As a committee chairman, he or she must demonstrate outstanding leadership and compile a record of noteworthy accomplishments. AAPA's Executive Committee makes the selection.
In the years after beginning his career as a deckhand on a Great Lakes carrier, Helberg worked as a newspaper reporter, vessel agency employee, port public relations director, and president of a stevedoring company. Since 1979, he has served as Executive Director of the Duluth Seaway Port Authority.
Beginning in 1985, Helberg has repeatedly served as a member of the Association’s Executive Committee, Legislative Policy Council, and as a member of its Board of Directors.
Since 1996, he has served continuously as Chairman of both AAPA’s Projects and Publications and Curriculum Committees. Helberg is also a past AAPA Chairman of the Board (1994-95), and a frequent presenter at AAPA seminars and conferences.
Helberg recently announced that he will retire March 31, 2003, after 40 years in the Great Lakes maritime industry. He is the second in seniority among U.S. members of the AAPA. Helberg is a native of the Duluth suburb of Esko, where he resides with his wife Karen.