Dick Ford Honored by State’s Port Districts – News Release

Dick Ford Honored by State’s Port Districts

On Wednesday February 26th the port districts of Washington State will dedicate their Association’s building in Olympia to the late Richard “Dick” Ford – a leading figure in Seattle civic life and a leader in the port and transportation community for decades.

Known for leading the Port of Seattle in the 1980’s, Ford was also a major figure in land use and transportation policy over the past two decades.

“As Executive Director of the Port of Seattle, Dick Ford prepared our terminals for the modern container ship era,” said Tom Albro, a Port of Seattle Commissioner.  “He was an inveterate promoter of international trade throughout the world, whose impact is still felt on the region today.”

Ford was the Chair of Governor Booth Gardner’s Growth Strategies Commission in 1990 – leading the effort to write what became the Growth Management Act. He later was appointed by Governor Gary Locke to the State Transportation Commission, where he was recognized as a leader on strategic transportation thinking. He began his career in Olympia, where he was the founding Executive Director of the Washington Public Ports Association (WPPA). He left Olympia to become legal counsel, and eventually Executive Director of the Port of Seattle, where he oversaw growth and groundbreaking trade relationships with Asia. Upon retirement, he became a managing partner at Preston, Thorgrimson Shidler Gates & Ellis (now K&L/Gates).

The WPPA is honoring Dick Ford by dedicating the Association’s building to his spirit of public service and leadership in the state port community. “Dick Ford was a tremendous leader for our state’s port districts” said WPPA Executive Director Eric D. Johnson. “He shared his wisdom with one and all, and he was always a gentleman.”

The WPPA building is located in a prominent location near the entrance to the state’s Capitol Campus, and this will be a fitting tribute to a civic servant.

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