The Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners, which oversees the Port of Long Beach, has elected Doug Drummond as its new president after the city council last month voted to dismiss former board president Thomas Fields.
In addition to Drummond’s election, the board also voted Rich Dines as vice president and Lori Ann Farrell as secretary. The commission directs the 450-person staff of the harbor department in development and promotion of the port.
Drummond, a former Long Beach city councilman and retired police commander, was appointed to the five-member commission in 2011. He will take over the president's position after the dismissal of Fields in November, which was based on a recommendation by Mayor Bob Foster, according to the Long Beach Press Telegram
The city council removed Fields by a vote of 6-3. Before the vote, Foster told the council that he had "lost confidence in Mr. Fields' willingness and desire to
harmonize the interests of Long Beach with that of the harbor department.” Foster pointed to security-coordination issues, questions about Fields' travel expenses and a lack of consensus on a new headquarters for the port as issues of contention.
At the time, Fields said, “Every decision I have made as a member of the commission has been
based on what is best for the port and the city.” Two days after the city council's vote, board vice president Nick Sramek resigned from the position he had held since 2007.
Drummond will now oversee a port that has seen a year-to-date growth in cargo volume of 12.1 percent. The port recently reported that it experienced a 2.5-percent bump in cargo volume, year over year in November. This result was propped up by a 9.9 percent increase in exports and a 6.5-percent increase in imports. For the year, exports are up by 10.8 percent, and the port has seen 14.4-percent more import activity.
“It’s my goal to promote a spirit of cooperation among the board and the staff of the harbor department," Drummond stated. "The Port of Long Beach is a leading international seaport, and I know that all of the commissioners take our responsibilities here very seriously. We intend to work together to make this port even stronger and better able to compete in the international marketplace."