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News Release
FOR RELEASE - February 9, 2009
Contact: Aaron Ellis,

American Association of Port Authorities
Phone: (202) 792-4033

Seaport Leaders To Gather March 23-24 In D.C.

AAPA 2009 Spring Conference Focuses on Economy, Infrastructure, Security

Although seaports serve as a vital economic lifeline for the movement of goods and services, the prosperity they deliver can be temporarily compromised when the economy falters.  This may result in short-sighted under-investment in national transportation infrastructure to reductions in other programs, such as security, that help protect port facilities against terrorism.

To address these concerns, the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) will bring hundreds of port industry leaders, trade and transportation officials, federal policymakers and legislative staff members together in Washington, D.C., March 23-24, for its annual Spring Conference.  Meeting at the Willard Intercontinental Hotel, the conference will focus on topics ranging from navigating the new U.S. political environment and the importance of national infrastructure investments in freight mobility, to viewing ports as a critical component of homeland security.

"In the Western Hemisphere, overseas trade through our seaports accounts for trillions of dollars in annual economic output and creates millions of jobs," said Kurt Nagle, AAPA's president and CEO.  "Nurturing these critical transportation hubs reaps big rewards because of the jobs they support, the economic prosperity they generate and the choices they provide consumers."

As part of the Spring Conference business program, AAPA will sign a Memorandum of Understanding with the European Sea Ports Organisation (ESPO), establishing the basis to pursue cooperative projects and policies of mutual interest, and hold its highly-popular Washington People's Luncheon, featuring a top-tier speaker who will be announced in March. 

The final session of the two-day event will be a public relations program featuring Edelman's U.S. managing director, Bob Knott, addressing AAPA's new seaport industry awareness initiative and its theme, "Seaports Deliver Prosperity."  Mr. Knott will detail the importance of a strong messaging campaign to better position seaports as leaders in the trade and transportation community.

More information about AAPA's Spring Conference is available at / (click on the "Programs & Events" tab) or by calling AAPA's Aaron Ellis at 703-706-4714.

WHO: American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA)
WHAT:Annual Spring Conference event and "Washington People" luncheon
WHEN:March 23-24, 2009 (Day 1, closed meetings 8am - 5:30pm; Day 2, open meetings 8:15am - 4pm)
WHERE: Willard Intercontinental Hotel, 1401 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC  20004; Tel: (202) 628-9100
MEDIA:Credentialed journalists interested in covering Day Two of this conference for media purposes are asked to contact Aaron Ellis,, to obtain a media pass.

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