Newly elected Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners President Lori Ann Guzmán on Monday outlined priorities for her one-year leadership term, pledging to reaffirm the Port of Long Beach’s commitments to fiscal prudence and social responsibility.
Guzmán seeks to set strategic goals to attract more cargo and to handle that business in an environmentally sustainable way. She also aims to broaden the Port’s social responsibility outreach and she said more people should be encouraged to lend their voices to the public dialogue on how the Port is run.
“We want more business, we’re ready for more business, and we will continue to do what we need to accommodate still more business in the future,” Guzmán said. “One of our biggest challenges, and opportunities, will be to continue to protect the financial strength that brought us here while still embracing the diversity that makes our City so great.”
Guzmán thanked the Board of Harbor Commissioners and staff for the work they have done to move the Port forward and said continued success depends on prioritizing the Port’s needs, while promoting respectful and comprehensive dialogue regarding an industry that is ever-evolving and a Port that continues to lead globally and effect change.
President Guzmán additionally called on the Port to rededicate itself to the landmark Green Port Policy, and look at operating in the local community as a privilege and responsibility.
“We owe it to the community to continue what we started 10 years ago,” said Guzmán. “The Green Port is who we are and it is part of everything we do. If there are opportunities to strengthen that policy, in a way that further addresses the needs of local communities directly impacted by the Port, we must do so.”
She also stressed the importance of working with City leaders, including Mayor Robert Garcia and the City Council, to help both the Port and the City of Long Beach achieve mutual goals.
Also on Monday, Guzmán announced she will resume using her given name – Lori Ann Guzmán. When appointed to the Harbor Commission in 2013, Guzmán was known as Lori Ann Farrell. She married Long Beach Director of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Communications Reggie Harrison, becoming Lori Ann Farrell Harrison.
She shared that, following her recent marriage and family discussions, her role as a mentor and role model in the community can be strengthened even further by honoring her cultural heritage and the roots of her family.
“It’s so much simpler and it clearly identifies me. My cultural background and life experiences shaped who I am today,” said Guzmán.
Guzmán was elected President by her fellow commissioners on July 27. Commissioners also selected Lou Anne Bynum as Vice President and Tracy Egoscue as Secretary, giving the Board an all-female officer slate for the first time in its history.
“I would also like to express my deep gratitude and appreciation for the women trailblazers whose shoulders we stand on today: former Commissioners Louise Duvall, Carmen Perez, Doris Topsy-Elvord and Susan Wise. Their stellar leadership and dedication paved the way for the female majority on the Board today, and for that we are so grateful.”
President Guzmán, currently the Director of Finance for the City of Huntington Beach, also thanked her colleagues there, especially the City Manager, Mayor and City Council, for their support in her new role.