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Port of Gulfport could soon be looking for another director

State port director Jonathan Daniels is excited about delivery of three new gantry cranes, left, on Friday March 18, 2016.
State port director Jonathan Daniels is excited about delivery of three new gantry cranes, left, on Friday March 18, 2016. jcfitzhugh@sunherald.com File

Jonathan Daniels, credited with bringing in new business as executive director at the state port in Gulfport, is a finalist to replace the retiring director of the Port of Portland in Oregon, the Oregonian and oregonlive.com are reporting.

“I will confirm a search firm did reach out to me regarding the position at the Port of Portland and I have been moving through the process,” said Daniels, 48. “There is still the final interviews that must occur.”

Finalists are scheduled to be interviewed May 10, with a vote later in the month to name a new executive director, the newspaper reports. The other finalists, the newspaper says, are Curtis Robinhold, deputy executive director at the Portland port, and Stephanie Dawson, chief operating officer for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

Daniels came to work in June 2013 as executive director of the state port in Gulfport. At the time, post-Katrina restoration and expansion was mired in controversy, with the community awaiting jobs promised from the $570 million project funded by the federal government.

He has brought in several new tenants and re-enlisted a longtime tenant, Chiquita. Under his leadership, the port also bought inland port property for lease to Topship LLC, affiliated with Louisiana-based Edison Chouest Offshore.

He also has overseen tenant relocations as construction continues on the expanded West Pier. He has started the planning process to use port property in North Gulfport for a freezer and lay-down area for U.S. Department of Defense cargo under the strategic port designation he helped acquire.

The port also has been certified under Daniels as a Green Marine port, a voluntary program that measures key environmental achievements.

Anita Lee: 228-896-2331, @calee99

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