U.S. Rep. John Mica To Accept AAPA ‘Port Person Of Year’ Award At March 20 Event Luncheon.
AAPA Centennial ‘Spring Conference’ Speakers Will Focus On Raising Priorities For Freight Infrastructure. U.S. Congressman John Mica (R-FL) will be honored on March 20 as the American Association of Port Authorities’ (AAPA) “Port Person of the Year” during the association’s 100th anniversary Spring Conference event, March 19-20, at The Renaissance Washington, DC Downtown Hotel.
Celebrating its first century as the Western Hemisphere’s leading trade association representing port authorities, AAPA selected Rep. Mica to receive its most prestigious annual award based on his leadership of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, six transportation subcommittees (several of which are crucial to America’s seaports), and his staunch support of maritime and port infrastructure policy and investment priorities.
Nominated last fall for “Port Person of the Year” by both the Port of Jacksonville and the Port of New Orleans, AAPA’s Executive Committee approved Rep. Mica’s nomination at its Jan. 18 meeting in Tampa.
In addition to receiving AAPA’s “Port Person” award, Rep. Mica will give a keynote address during lunch. As part of his remarks, he is expected to discuss what he and his congressional colleagues have been doing to pass comprehensive surface transportation reauthorization legislation, just announced as The American Energy and Infrastructure Act, and expand employment opportunities to build the nation’s infrastructure.
“Chairman Mica understands that increased federal funding in land- and water-side transportation infrastructure is an essential and effective utilization of limited resources that will pay long-term dividends through increased trade, sustainable job creation and tax revenues,” said AAPA President and CEO Kurt Nagle. “We greatly appreciate leaders who understand and support our industry, and I’m very pleased AAPA is honoring Chairman Mica with the ‘Port Person of the Year’ award for our centennial year.”
Rep. Mica represents the 7th Congressional District of Florida and is currently serving his 10th term in office. Last July, he rolled out an outline for The American Energy and Infrastructure Act, which for the first time in surface transportation reauthorization history includes a maritime title. Due to the nation’s budgetary challenges, Rep. Mica is committed to enacting a long-term reauthorization of federal transportation programs to allow for more efficiencies, better planning and flexibility for state governments to prioritize transportation projects.
Introducing the congressman will be Virginia Ports Authority Executive Director Jerry Bridges, who is AAPA’s 2012 chairman of the board. “By selecting Chairman Mica as AAPA’s ‘Port Person of the Year,’ we’re recognizing a highly visible and effective national leader who understands the critical importance of ports and who doesn’t shy away from including maritime and seaport challenges as he seeks solutions to the myriad transportation problems facing this nation,” said Mr. Bridges. “With his focus on ports, our often ‘invisible’ industry is beginning to enter the popular consciousness as a worthwhile investment today to reap the economic benefits for generations to come.”
Each year, AAPA presents its “Port Person of the Year” award to an individual or individuals who have made significant contributions to the port industry. Recent award recipients include: Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE) - 2011; Adm. Thad W. Allen, Commandant, U.S. Coast Guard (U.S. “Port Person”) and The Honourable David L. Emerson, P.C., former Minister of Industry, International Trade and Foreign Affairs for the Government of Canada (Canadian “Port Person”) - 2010; Congresswoman Jane Harman (D-CA) - 2009; U.S. Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV) - 2008; Panamanian President Martin Torrijos - 2007; U.S. Sen. Susan M. Collins (R-ME) - 2006; and U.S. Transporta¬tion Secretary Norman Mineta – 2005.
Other speakers for this year’s AAPA Spring Conference include political analyst, author and publisher Charlie Cook; International Finance Corporation senior finance officers Ari Skromne and Han Cao; U.S. Rep. Janice Hahn (D-CA); port industry economist John C. Martin; Canadian Ambassador to the United States Gary Doer; and Adam Snider, transportation reporter for Politico Pro.
AAPA anticipates more than 200 legislators, governmental staff mem¬bers and port industry leaders and staff will take part in the two-day conference. Additionally, AAPA will hold its Centennial Celebration Dinner the evening of March 19 for more than 600 invited guests.
WHO: U.S. Rep. John Mica, Chairman, House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.
WHAT: Addressing U.S. transportation infrastructure policy issues at AAPA’s centennial Spring Conference event luncheon.
WHEN: Luncheon presentation on Tuesday, March 20, 12:00 – 2:00 p.m.; other featured conference presentations on both March 19 and 20.
WHERE: The Renaissance Washington, DC Downtown Hotel, 999 9th Street NW, Washington, D.C.