This award is made in recognition of an individual or individuals whose outstanding work or service has made a significant contribution to public port authorities and/or maritime commerce in the Western Hemisphere. Nominees may be recognized for positive contributions with international impact or for benefits to ports within a country or region.
Nominees may include government officials, trade or transportation industry leaders, or any other individual who has made a significant contribution to advance the priorities of the public port community (examples: free trade, infrastructure investment, technological advances, etc.). Generally, nominees will not be members of the public port community itself, but friends and allies.
Active members of the Association are not eligible for nomination.
One individual from each of AAPA’s four delegations (Canadian, Caribbean, Latin American and the United States) may be honored, with as many as four Port Persons of the Year presented in any year. The award(s) may be shared by more than one individual in recognition of joint efforts. If no suitable candidates exist, one or more of the awards will not be presented.
The awards may be awarded posthumously.
In order for individuals to be considered for AAPA’s Port Person of the Year Award, those submitting the nomination must write at least one paragraph on each of the following criteria.
Individual experience and expertise: Describe nominee’s background and expertise as it relates to this award. Describe any awards or other recognition received by the individual.
Contributions to the port/maritime/transportation industry: Describe the kinds of activities undertaken by the individual that have substantially contributed to the betterment of the public port community and/or maritime commerce (a) within the delegation; and (b) throughout the Western Hemisphere.
How would ports benefit: Describe how the port industry would benefit from this individual’s selection as “Port Person of the Year.”
The AAPA Board will review the nominations and determine to whom, if anyone, the awards will be presented each year.
U.S. Department of Transportation
2022 – U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and U.S. Senator Mark Warner (D-VA) – AAPA Port Person of the Year Awardees U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA)–AAPA President’s Award for Legislative Leadership
2021 – U.S. Representative Peter DeFazio (D-OR) and Senator RichardShelby (R-AL)
2020 – R.D. James, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works
2019 – U.S. Representative Mario Díaz-Balart (R-FL)
2018 – U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX)
2017 – U.S. Representative Steve Scalise (R-LA)
2016 – U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Rep. Mike Simpson (R-ID)
2015 – U.S. Senator David Vitter (R-LA) (U.S. Port Person of the Year); Lic. Guillermo Ruiz de Teresa, General Coordinator of Mexican Ports and Merchant Marine (Latin American Port Person of the Year)
2014 – U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Rep. Bill Shuster (R-PA)
2013 – U.S. Representative Janice Hahn (D-CA) and Rep. Ted Poe (R-TX)
2012 – U.S. Representative John L. Mica (R-FL)
2011 – U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-DE)
2010 – Admiral Thad W. Allen, Commandant, U.S. Coast Guard (U.S. Port Person of the Year); The Honorable David L. Emerson, P.C., Former Minister of Industry, International Trade, Foreign Affairs for the Government of Canada (Canadian Port Person of the Year)
2009 – U.S. Representative Jane Harman (D-CA)
2008 - U.S. Senator Robert C. Byrd (D-WV)
2007 - His Excellency Martin Torrijos, President of the Republic of Panamá
2006 - U.S. Senator Susan M. Collins (R-ME)
2005 - U.S. Secretary of Transportation Norman Y. Mineta
2004 - U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA)
2003 - U.S. Representative James L. Oberstar (D-MN)
2002 - U.S. Trade Representative Robert B. Zoellick
2001 - U.S. Senator John Breaux (D-LA)
2000 - U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX)
1998 - Canadian Member of Parliament Stan P. Keyes
1997 - U.S. Senator Mark O. Hatfield (R-OR)
1995 - U.S. Trade Representative Mickey Kantor
1994 - U.S. Secretary of Transportation Federico Peña
DISTINGUISHED SERVICE AWARD
AAPA's Distinguished Service Award is presented for dedicated efforts on behalf of all ports in the Western Hemisphere and the enrichment of the maritime and port industries.
2019 - Steve Cernak, Port Everglades (posthumously)
2019 - Kurt Nagle, American Association of Port Authorities
2016 - Gary LaGrange, Port of New Orleans
2014 - Dr. Bory Steinberg, Steinberg & Associates Tay Yoshitani, Port of Seattle (retired)
2011 - Richard Steinke, Port of Long Beach Agustín Díaz, Curaçao Ports Authority (retired)
2010 - Ross Gaudreault, Port of Québec
2009 - H. Thomas Kornegay, P.E., PPM, Port of Houston Authority (retired)
2007 - J. Robert Bray, Virginia Port Authority (retired) Gary Failor, Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority (retired) Dominic Taddeo, Montréal Port Authority (retired)
2002 - Lillian Borrone, The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey (retired)
2001 - David Bellefontaine, Halifax Port Authority (retired)
2000 - Charles M. Rowland, Canaveral Port Authority
1999 - Frank G. Martin, Jr., Indiana Port Commission
1994 - Dr. Willis Pequagnat, IAPH and London Dumping Convention
1993 - Professor Thomas J. Dowd, University of Washington
1992 - J. Kerwin Rooney, Port of Oakland and AAPA General Counsel
ImPORTant SERVICE AWARD
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.
2014 John Mohr, Port of Everett
2013 Frank Hamons, Maryland Port Administration
2002 Davis Helberg, Duluth Seaway Port Authority
1999 James J. O'Brien, Port Everglades
1996 W. Don Welch, South Carolina State Ports Authority
1995 Hugh Welsh, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Jerry Franks, South Carolina State Ports Authority Sergio Majul, Empresa Portuaria de Chile
1993 Robert W. Goethe, Georgia Ports Authority
1992 Charles E. Roberts, Port of Oakland
1988 Henry E. "Hank" Soike, Port of Grays Harbor Don Mosman, Port of Los Angeles
1987 Lloyd Anderson, Port of Portland Oury Selig, Port of Galveston Alfred Hammon, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
1985 Edward S. Reed, Port of New Orleans Herbert R. Haar, Jr., Port of New Orleans Melvin Shore, Port of Sacramento W. Gregory Halpin, Maryland Port Administration
1984 Franklyn W. Donahue, Port of Palm Beach Clifford B. O'Hara, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
1983 Vernon L. Lungren, Port of Seattle Francis A. "Art" Mulhern, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey G. Luther Rosebrock, South Carolina State Ports Authority