Port of Long Beach, California
Mario Cordero, an international maritime industry leader, Long Beach resident and attorney, is Executive Director of the Port of Long Beach, California, named to the post by the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners, effective May 15, 2017.
Beginning in 2003, Mr. Cordero served as a member, vice president and president of the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners for eight years, before resigning to accept President Barack Obama’s appointment to the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) in 2011. He served on the FMC until May 2017 and was FMC Chairman from April 2013 to January 2017. The FMC is the federal agency responsible for regulating the nation’s international ocean transportation for the benefit of exporters, importers and the American consumer and fostering a fair, efficient and reliable international ocean transportation system, while protecting the public from unfair and deceptive practices.
As Executive Director of the Port of Long Beach, Mr. Cordero reports to the Board and leads the Port’s Harbor Department staff of more than 500 with an annual budget of $775 million. Inclusiveness and collaboration are hallmarks of Mr. Cordero’s leadership style, and due to both his Port and FMC leadership experience, he understands the needs of ocean carriers, terminal operators, cargo owners and other trade partners locally, nationally and around the globe.
During his tenure as a Long Beach Harbor Commissioner, Mr. Cordero spearheaded the development of the pioneering Green Port Policy, which outlines a sustainable environmental ethic for all Port operations, mandating that trade growth must run parallel with environmental stewardship. The Policy has been nationally recognized and become a model for ports worldwide.
In an effort to help the public to better understand Port operations and how the Port benefits the Long Beach citizens it serves, Mr. Cordero also promoted an expanded Port community outreach program.
He was recently appointed as the Port’s Representative to the Alameda Corridor Transportation Authority Governing Board and to the Governing Board of the Intermodal Container Transfer Facility-Joint Powers Authority for a five-year term.
Previously, he served as an Executive Board member on the American Association of Port Authorities’ Latin American delegation and was instrumental in the development of policy urging greater cooperation and trade between North American and Latin American ports.
Mr. Cordero has practiced law for more than 30 years, specializing in workers’ compensation cases. He is a past member of the Federal Bar Association’s Central District, the Long Beach Bar Association and former Chairman of the Workers Compensation Committees for both the Long Beach Bar Association and the Mexican-American Bar Association for the County of Los Angeles.
The Mexican-American Bar Association named him Attorney of the Year in 2007, and he received an environmental award the same year from the League of California Cities.
Away from his legal practice, he has taught Political Science at Long Beach City College, focusing on California Politics, and served on the City of Long Beach Community Development Commission. He also was Vice Chair of the City-commissioned Ethics Task Force that developed a Code of Ethics for Long Beach City employees, as well as elected and appointed City officials.
He holds a law degree from the University of Santa Clara and a Bachelor of Science degree in political science from California State University, Long Beach.
Born in Los Angeles and raised in Gardena, Mario Cordero is a classical music pianist, playing since the age of 8, and also expresses himself through poetry. He moved to Long Beach in 1974 when he married Long Beach native Gloria (Duron) Cordero. The couple, who still reside in Long Beach, have two children. Mrs. Cordero has an impressive history of public service in Long Beach and heads Cordero & Associates, a Long Beach-based public affairs firm. She currently serves on the Long Beach Board of Water Commissioners. Their daughter, Celine, is also a lawyer, and son, Mario Andres, is an educator at St. John Bosco High School.
The Port of Long Beach is one of the world’s premier seaports, a leading gateway for trans-Pacific trade and a trailblazer in innovative goods movement, safety and environmental stewardship. With 175 shipping lines connecting Long Beach to 217 seaports, the Port handles $180 billion in trade annually, supporting hundreds of thousands of Southern California jobs and 1.5 million jobs nationwide.
Industry leaders in 2016 named the Port of Long Beach the Best North American Seaport — the 18th time in the last 21 years — in recognition of the Port’s service, innovation and reliability. As the second-busiest seaport in North America, Long Beach is undergoing a decade-long capital improvement program topping $4 billion, the largest in the nation, building some of the most modern, efficient and sustainable marine facilities in the world.