Harris County Commissioners Court has appointed longtime labor leader Clyde Fitzgerald to serve as a member of the Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority.
Fitzgerald's appointment fills the seat of former Port Commissioner Jim Fonteno, who submitted his resignation to Commissioners Court in April, indicating his desire to spend more time with his wife and two young daughters.
Clyde Fitzgerald, who started his career at age 16 working on the wharves of the Houston Ship Channel, was sworn in Tuesday after Commissioners Court selected him to fill Fonteno's unexpired term.
Harris County Judge Ed Emmett said, "There is no finer individual in the transportation business than Clyde Fitzgerald."
Fitzgerald is a 50-year veteran of the Houston waterfront and currently serves as president of the South Atlantic & Gulf Coast District of the International Longshoremen's Association. He joined his father on the docks in 1959 and later served as President of ILA Local 28 for 20 years.
In 1991, he was elected secretary-treasurer of the South Atlantic and Gulf Coast District, which stretches from North Carolina to Brownsville, Texas. In 2002, he was elected president of the District and, in July of 2010, was re-elected to that position without opposition for another four-year term.
He also serves as vice president of the International ILA organization and is a member of its Executive Council. He and his wife
Vickie have been married for 51 years and are the parents of three adult children. They have six grandchildren.