Tata: Search For New Ports Authority Executive On Track

By Jenny Callison, posted Jan 28, 2014
State transportation secretary Tony Tata
The search for a new head of the state’s ports is proceeding, the state secretary of transportation said this week.
Department of Transportation chief Tony Tata, visiting the Port of Wilmington with Gov. Pat McCrory on Monday, said that, after conducting an international search, officials had narrowed the field of candidates considerably and would begin interviews shortly.
The N.C. Ports Authority has been without a permanent head for a year, since then-ports executive director Tom Bradshaw stepped down from the post unexpectedly. On Feb. 1, the organization announced that the ports’ deputy executive director Jeff Miles had been appointed acting executive director.
Miles joined the authority in January 2005 as chief operations officer and in November 2012 was promoted to the deputy executive director post. He has more than 20 years’ experience in ports management and the shipping industry.
The N.C. Ports Authority revenues for Fiscal Year 2013 – the year ending June 31 – were up 12 percent from those of the previous year, totaling just over $44 million, according to a state audit completed in October. Miles has also presided over an environment of “continued spending restraint,” the audit stated.
“Jeff has done an excellent job,” Tata said Monday of the interim chief. He did not say if Miles is a candidate for the permanent job.
When the N.C. Ports Authority, which manages both the Port of Wilmington and the Port of Morehead City, was transferred from the N.C. Department of Commerce to the N.C. Department of Transportation in 2011, the authority’s board of directors saw its powers diminish, including, apparently, the power to hire and fire the ports executive.
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