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Maritime Economic Development Committee Homepage

Committee Mission

The Maritime Economic Development (MED) Committee shall provide a forum for the exchange of innovative approaches to port strategic planning and research, as well as real estate best practices and cargo growth opportunities. The MED Committee shall also propose policy action for the U.S. Legislative Policy Council as appropriate and at the request of the U.S. Legislative Policy Council or the Chairman of the Board.

Committee Priorities

Planning and Research:

Through publications, member discussions, surveys and other means, assess and forecast trends in: vessel sizes and technologies and their impacts on port development and operations; government grants, finance and capital funding for port and connecting transportation infrastructure development; port governance, including inter-port cooperation agreements; and workforce development programs, policies and best practices.

Port Real Estate:

Compile & disseminate to committee members comprehensive port property asset information, as well as best practices in port real property acquisition, sales, leasing, development and strategic asset management.

Innovative Cargo Growth:

Develop strategies for winning new bulk, breakbulk, container, energy and Ro-Ro cargo contracts, as well as for cruise passenger services, and energy, manufacturing and warehousing facilities development contracts. Assess/promote opportunities for establishing and maintaining marine highway services for intercoastal, intracoastal and inland waterways. Develop strategies for increasing existing export and import volumes, while proactively engaging with stakeholders to help ports publicly communicate their economic, socio and environmental rewards for increasing cargo and passenger numbers.

Committee Roster

Committee Work Group Rosters (AAPA Members Only)

Committee Resources (by Work Group)


Past MED Committee Meetings

Meeting on Monday morning, October 14, 2019, 8:00am to 9:15am (Granby D meeting room, third floor) Click here for agenda
In conjunction with AAPA's 108th Annual Convention and Expo (Oct. 13-16)
Hilton Norfolk The Main
100 E Main St
Norfolk, VA 23510
During this meeting, presentations were made by:
**Amy Miller, Port Director for the Port of Pensacola, discussing the port’s new Vision Plan that provides clear direction to port staff and its board of directors (i.e. Pensacola City Council) as to what types of business activity the community will support at the port.
**Travis Black, Port Infrastructure Development Program Team Leader for the U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration, talking about applying for Port Infrastructure Development Grants and using the Port Planning and Investment Toolkit.
**Franc J Pigna, Managing Director for Aegir Port Property Advisers, and Andrew Palomares, Chief Financial Officer for the Port of Hueneme, presenting a case study incorporating customer relations, marketing, economic development, strategic off-port land strategies and development of port-related logistics facilities.

Meeting on Monday morning, October 2, 2017, 8:00am - 9:30am (Seaside Ballroom B meeting room) click here for agenda
In conjunction with AAPA's 106th Annual Convention and Expo (Oct. 1-4)
Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center
300 E Ocean Blvd.
Long Beach, CA 90802
During this meeting, presentations were made by:
**Port of Hueneme's Dona Lacayo, titled "Latest Developments in Marine Highways"
**U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration's Seneka Sok, titled "Discussion on Next Module of Port Planning and Financing Toolkit"

Meeting on Monday afternoon, June 12, 2017, 2:00pm - 5:00pm (Crown Plaza Downtown Convention Center Hotel Belmont B meeting room) to review, discuss and approve a revised MED Committee mission, priorities and work groups agenda. Click here for committee meeting agenda. 
In conjunction with AAPA's 2017 Communications and Economic Development Seminar (June 13-14)
Crown Plaza Downtown Convention Center
441 NE 2nd Avenue
Portland, OR 97232

Meeting on Tuesday morning, April 4, 2017, 8:00am - 9:30am
In conjunction with AAPA's 2017 AAPA Spring Conference (April 4-5)
Renaissance Washington DC Downtown Hotel, Meeting Room 4
999 Ninth Street NW, Washington, DC 20001
Click here for meeting agenda.

Meeting of the Research and Planning Work Group on Wednesday afternoon, Feb. 1, 2017, 2:00pm - 5:00pm, to discuss priorities and how to roll in the discipline of research into the work group's focus. (Click here for the agenda, or click on the Research and Planning Work Group resources page link above to get a full summary of the meeting.)
Held in conjunction with AAPA's Planning for Shifting Trade Conference (Feb. 2-3, 2017)
Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel & Marina
700 South Florida Avenue
Tampa, FL 33602

Prior Meetings

Committee meeting on Monday morning, October 24, 2016, 8:00am - 9:30am
In conjunction with AAPA's 105th Annual Convention and Expo (Oct. 23-26, 2016)
Sheraton New Orleans Hotel
500 Canal Street
New Orleans, LA  70130
Click here for the committee meeting agenda.
This meeting began with an update by AAPA's Meredith Martino on how to effectively navigate AAPA's new website ( to get the most use out of it and most easily find the part of it that are of interest to users. Next was a discussion on the Maritime Economic Development Work Groups, for which there are six, including the new Planning Work Group, which was recently created as a replacement for the former Planning and Research Committee. The next meeting of this Work Group will be on the afternoon of Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2017, in Tampa, just prior to the Planning for Shifting Trade conference in the same hotel. For more info about the six work groups, scroll up. Next was a presentation by USDOT Maritime Administration's Stephen Shafer on a new Intelligent Transportatation System grants program and a solicitation of ideas from among the committee participants on what ports might apply for from this program. Click here for Mr. Shafer's presentation. Next up was a discussion of the agenda topics and a call for speakers for AAPA's 2017 Communications and Economic Development Seminar, to be held in Portland, Ore., June 13-14. Finally, the meeting ended with a look at AAPA's new awareness videos, one on the Port Professional Management program and one on the advantages of AAPA membership, which will soon be accessible on AAPA's website and its Twitter and Facebook sites. 

Committee meeting on September 13, 2016, 1:00pm - 5:00pm (In conjunction with AAPA Energy and Environment Seminar)
Vancouver Marriott Pinnacle Downtown Hotel
1128 W Hastings St, Vancouver, BC V6E 4R5, Canada
Click here for meeting agenda. Meeting included a guided tour, by boat, of the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority.

Meeting on the morning of April 5, 2016, 8:00am - 9:30am
In conjunction with AAPA Spring Conference
Renaissance Washington DC Downtown Hotel, Meeting Room 4
999 9th St NW, Washington, DC, USA 20001
Click here for a copy of the MED Committee meeting agenda.
Click here for information about AAPA's 2016 Spring Conference.

AAPA Infrastructure Development & Financing Seminar MED Committee Meeting - March 8,
Click here to view the March 8, 2016 MED Committee meeting agenda. During this 2-hour committee meeting in San Diego, just prior to the March 9-10 Infrastructure Development & Financing Seminar presentations, attendees discussed:

In addition to the above presentations, meeting attendees informally shared examples of their current port economic development projects, and were briefed on recent activities of the five MED Work Groups (Port Real Estate Best Practices; Marine Highways; Export Development; Non-Containerized Cargo Development; and Energy Cargo and Facilities Development).

2015 AAPA Annual Convention MED Committee Meeting - Nov. 2, 2015
Click here to view the Nov. 2, 2015 MED Committee meeting agenda. During this meeting, led by MED 2nd Vice Chair Amy Miller (who is Port of Pensacola's port director), participants heard a presentation by AAPA's Mary Beth Long about the association's new Strategic Plan (click here for AAPA's strategic plan highlights) and an overview of the U.S. Maritime Administration's (MARAD) new Strong Ports white board videos. To view each of MARAD's new Strong Ports videos, click here, here and here. To view MARAD's new Marine Highways video, click here

2015 AAPA Spring Conference MED Committee Meeting - April 20, 2015
Click here to view the April 20, 2015 MED Committee meeting agenda. During this meeting, MED Committee participants, led by Chair Eduardo Campirano, Port of Brownsville, heard a presentation by John Young, director of freight and surface transportation for AAPA, on the association's just-released 2015 The State of Freight report, which analyzes the needs over the next 10 years of AAPA's U.S. member ports in relation to improvements in their landside freight transportation network connections. Additionally, Dr. John Martin, president of Martin Associates, Lancaster, Pa., laid out the details in his just-released report, 2014 National Economic Impact of the U.S. Coastal Port System, of the vast and growing economic impacts, and importance, of the U.S. deep-water port system. Later in the meeting,Spencer Stewart, with Yardi Systems, provided a written and oral update for the Port Real Estate Best Practices Work Group (see his written report above in the Committee Resources by Work Group links), while Jim MacLellan, with the Port of Los Angeles, provided a verbal presentation on what his port is doing with businesses in the Los Angeles community to generate more exports through their port. The meeting adjourned after a roundtable update from participants of what each is doing at their respective port in regard to economic development activities, followed by a short discussion by AAPA Membership Services Director Ed O'Connell on AAPA's plans to hold a Port Real Estate Issues seminar in Los Angeles during the first week of December 2015, hosted by the Port of Los Angeles.