Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Shaun Stevenson to take the helm of Port of Prince Rupert as CEO and President

A new name awaits the door to the
President and CEO's office at the Atlin
Terminal offices of the Port of Prince
Rupert, with Shaun Stevenson appointed
to the position on Tuesday evening.
The last announcement of Tuesday night's Annual Public Meeting of the Port of Prince Rupert charted the course for Port operations into the future, with Port Chair Bud Smith making the much anticipated announcement of the Port's choice to guide the region's largest economic engine and global face to the world.

As the evening began, Shaun Stevenson started the meeting known as the VP of Trade Development  and Public affairs for the Port.

As it came to an end, he had been introduced as the new CEO and President, taking over from Joe Rektor who held the position on an interim basis and who was a prime candidate for the job, prior to his decision to withdraw from the competition for the top position.

Having worked extensively with Industry partners, shippers and marine carriers, along with First Nations and community stakeholders, the new CEO and President will be well versed in the issues facing the local community, as well as the larger challenges that the Port will have to consider as it continues on with its expansion plans and higher profile in Global shipping.

Stevenson brings over 21 years of strategic and operational experience with the Port Authority and has been part of the team that has helped to steer the Port's makeover from the bulk break facility of the last century, into the global gateway that now is a regular destination for many of the world's container lines.

Board Chair Bud Smith at Tuesday's Annual Public Meeting
(photo from Port of Prince Rupert)

As part of the announcement of the Port's decision, Mr. Smith provided some background to how the Port went about their Executive Search, calling on the services of Boyden a national firm that specializes in CEO recruitment.

The Chair reviewed the nature of that search, offering up how the most important element to the selection was the need for the next CEO and President to put down roots in the City of Prince Rupert and to be an active participant in the community.

He noted that some 67 applications had been received for the position, including five from Prince Rupert, the collection of applicants ranged from CEO's of Port  and Airport Authorities and terminal operators and other logistics officials from across Canada, the United States and other global locations such as Australia and England.

The position was offered to, and accepted by Mr. Stevenson last week, in his comments to the APM audience he outlined his enthusiasm for the new challenge ahead.

"I'm very grateful for this new opportunity and to be frank I'm grateful for the opportunity that this organization has provided to me over the last 21 years. I'm a fierce promoter of Prince Rupert, I believe in Prince Rupert and what this port can do for both the community and the region and very excited for the new challenge. Equally I'm excited to continue working with a very talented group  of individuals we have down at the Port of Prince Rupert as well as all of our partners that have contributed to the outstanding growth that we just had the pleasure to talk about"  

Shaun Stevenson, the new CEO and President of the Port of Prince Rupert
providing remarks for Tuesday's Annual Public Meeting.
(photo from Port of Prince Rupert)

In addition to his notes on the new duties, Stevenson outlined a snapshot of the impact that the Port has on the region and the relationships that the Port continues to build as they expand their operations.

"There's over 5,000 jobs that are attributed to the Port of Prince Rupert across the region, that's a pretty big deal, that gets beyond talking about tonnes and TEU"s and Financial  performance. We're the fastest growing port in North America, we're the third largest container port in Canada, we've got record volumes and I expect we'll have record volumes again this year.  And as important, we've got progressive agreements with First Nations that are embedding and entrenching their economic participation in a growing port and we've made significant progress ensuring that we can do all these things, while ensuring we have a commitment to sustainability"

In an information release issued shortly after Monday's Annual Public Meeting, Port Chair Bud Smith first thanked Mr. Rektor the Interim President and CEO for his steady leadership during the period of time since the departure of Don Krusel who retired in 2017.

The Port Chair then further hailed the path travelled by Mr. Stevenson with the Port through its evolution of the last twenty years and his understanding of the Port's role as part of the global trade industry as the defining elements of the Port's selection.

"Shaun has played an integral role in the Port’s development from a relatively small concern to a North American Gateway that is playing a vital role in delivering and expanding market access to Canadian shippers, industries, and their communities,”  ... “Shaun’s deep understanding of the Port’s role in adding value to global trade is outstanding, as his ability to communicate and develop strong relationships with our partners.”

In his comments following the appointment announcement, the new CEO and President took note of Prince Rupert's place as part of the nations supply chain and how the dedicated team at the Port continues to work to ensure that the Prince Rupert gateway remains a relevant part of the nation's trade footprint.

“I’m inspired and humbled to be given this opportunity to work with our dedicated PRPA team as we advance into a very bright future,” ...  “The Port of Prince Rupert’s importance to the country’s trade agenda and economic future has never been more relevant. We have the opportunity to be truly progressive and innovative in our Port development plans, and we can’t wait to keep doing our part to build a better Canada.”

The full Annual Public Meeting is available for streaming on the Port Facebook page, the announcement of Mr. Stevenson's appointment comes up at the one hour, thirty seven minute mark.

More background on the Tuesday announcement can be reviewed here.

We will review some further notes on the Annual Public Meeting and the stream of items of interest for the North Coast that came out of it into Wednesday and the rest of the week.

More items of note related to the Port of Prince Rupert can be found on our archive page here.

To return to the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

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