AAPA Seaports Advisory

Gary Nelson Selected as Incoming AAPA Chairman of the Board

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Congratulations to Gary G. Nelson, executive director of the Port of Grays Harbor, who has been elected by his fellow board members to serve as AAPA’s chairman of the board for the 2019-20 activity year that begins in October. Gary joined the Port of Grays Harbor in April 2000, bringing with him a strong background of private sector management, particularly in trading wood products throughout the Pacific Rim. His experience working for large publicly-held forest product companies, as well as a small family-held sawmill, resulted in his developing connections and networks in the international trade arena. During his tenure, the Port of Grays Harbor has experienced exponential growth in cargo shipments, private investments and business activity.

Since joining the port, he’s been active in developing Grays Harbor’s sustainable industry corridor by networking with local business owners to cooperatively address efficiency improvements within the community. He’s also worked to develop the Grays Harbor Jobs Team, an inter-local consortium of local agencies dedicated to providing the infrastructure to support family wage jobs and mutually set project priorities for economic development projects. A native of Anacortes Wash., Gary attended the University of Oregon, Willamette University (BA, Environmental Science, 1980) and the University of Washington’s College of Forest Resources (MS, Forest Economics and Finance, 1983).


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