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Congressional Insights on Trade & Ports to Kick Off AAPA’s 105th Annual Convention in New Orleans

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The Port of New Orleans, a major international goods movement and cruise hub in Louisiana’s famed Crescent City, is set to host the 105th Annual Convention and Expo of the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) - the unified and recognized voice of seaports in the Americas, Oct. 23-26. The four-day program will feature members of Congress discussing anticipated trade and transportation policy for the upcoming year; noted political commentator and executive editor for The Weekly Standard, Fred Barnes, focusing on the 2016 U.S. elections; an industry outlook on global and domestic supply chains and governments’ evolving role in optimizing goods movement; perspectives on port financing, investment and development initiatives; anticipated impacts of energy markets on ports; and presentations addressing effective communications strategies, technologies to enhance port productivity, and best practices in environmental stewardship.

The event will be in the Sheraton New Orleans Hotel, where hundreds of leading port, government, trade and transportation leaders, port-industry suppliers and subject-matter experts will assemble.

“This year marks the seventh time New Orleans has played host to AAPA’s annual conference,” said Port of New Orleans President and CEO Gary LaGrange. “We’re honored to host this prestigious event and we know attendees will enjoy New Orleans’ hospitality and the unparalleled networking and business programs that AAPA events provide.”

Reflecting on Mr. LaGrange’s passion for his cherished city, AAPA President and CEO Kurt Nagle said, "AAPA and our member ports look forward to returning to New Orleans for our annual convention. With its inviting mix of cultural amenities and a world-class seaport, the Crescent City is an ideal location to bring together port representatives from throughout the hemisphere to collaborate on key industry issues and strengthen trading relationships. We greatly appreciate the hospitality of Gary LaGrange and his port’s Board of Commissioners for hosting this international event."

On the final day of the program, which will also feature AAPA’s annual awards luncheon, the ports association and Beaumont, Texas’ Lamar University will hold a signing ceremony to authorize a program agreement between the two organizations. It will enable current port professionals who have earned AAPA’s Professional Port Manager (PPM®) certification to jump start attainment of Lamar University’s fully online, graduate degree programs in port management. In June, AAPA and Lamar University signed a Memorandum of Understanding to provide mutually-beneficial educational and professional development opportunities for the benefit of students and port professionals.

WHO: American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) and Port of New Orleans.

WHAT: AAPA’s 105th Annual Convention and Expo, featuring U.S. Senator David Vitter (RLa.), U.S. Rep. and House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) and U.S. Rep. Steve Palazzo (RMiss.), together with political commentator and executive editor of The Weekly Standard, Fred Barnes.

WHEN: Oct. 23-26, 2016.

MEDIA: Professional journalists representing bona-fide media outlets may request a media pass to open business sessions (Oct. 25-26) by contacting AAPA Public Affairs Director Aaron Ellis (aellis@aapa-ports.org or 703-684-5700).