Port of Tacoma News: Bacon named commission president

Newly re-elected Port Commissioner Connie Bacon was unanimously named president during Thursday’s commission meeting. The move replaces Commissioner R. Ted Bottiger, who will serve as an assistant secretary on the commission.

“I’m proud to take office, and look forward to a productive year,” said Commissioner Bacon during yesterday’s meeting.

Bacon was elected to the Port Commission in 1997, and re-elected in 2001 and 2005. She is a former Executive Director of the World Trade Center Tacoma, and served eight years as Special Assistant to former Washington State Governor Booth Gardner. She serves on the Board of Directors for numerous organizations, including the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce, the Asia Pacific Cultural Center, the Regional Access Mobility Project (RAMP), and the Tideflats Rail Oversight Committee. She is also a member of the Advisory Board for the Port of Tacoma Endowed Chair at the University of Washington-Tacoma.

Bacon graduated from Syracuse University. She received a master’s degree from Evergreen State College.

“Last year was a challenging year, and I was happy to have the support of Commissioner Bottiger,” said Executive Director Timothy J. Farrell. “I’m looking forward to working with Commissioner Bacon more closely in 2006.”

According to Mike Wasem, manager of media relations, positions among Commissioners rotate yearly, based on procedures approved by the port commission in 1999. Port of Tacoma Commissioners serve four-year terms. The five-member Commission is the governing body of the Port, setting policy and authorizing major expenditures.

The Port Commission includes Bacon (president), Jack Fabulich (vice president), Dick Marzano (secretary), Clare Petrich (assistant secretary), and Bottiger (Assistant Secretary).


Port commissioners, staff, and customers, celebrated the retirement of long-time port employee and Director of Rail Operations Kelly Smith during Thursday’s commission meeting.
Smith started working at the port as a casual worker in 1976. He later worked as a traffic assistant and night superintendent before moving into rail operations, where he worked for 16 years.

“I’m really grateful to the port for having as long a tenure as I’ve had,” said Smith. “It’s really the only place I’ve known to work for, and that’s a great privilege.”

“It’s a bittersweet moment for the Port of Tacoma,” said Executive Director Timothy J. Farrell. “We’re thankful and grateful for Kelly’s contributions.”

Commissioner Connie Bacon echoed that remark.

“With all the knowledge he has about the port, it’s hard to see Kelly go,” she said.