Grays Harbor Labor Leader Becomes Federal Maritime Commissioner

United States Federal Maritime Commission
United States Federal Maritime Commission
Image via United States Federal Maritime Commission.

Longtime Grays Harbor, Wash.-area labor leader Max Vekich is now the newest member of the Federal Maritime Commission. Vekich, who was nominated by President Joe Biden in June, was sworn in on Feb. 15 for a commission term that expires June 30, 2026.

Port of Grays Harbor Commission President Tom Quigg congratulated Vekich on his appointment to the five-member commission.

“Having someone at the table that understands the role that small and large ports play in trade will be valuable,” Quigg said. “International trade is the cornerstone of our mission at the port, and we have no doubt that Max’s leadership and decades of experience will be an asset to the port and maritime industry in his new role.”

Vekich brings more than 40 years of maritime experience. He joined the International Longshore and Warehouse Union in 1979 as a longshore worker and previously served as president of ILWU Local 52 and on the ILWU International Executive Committee.

Also, from 1983 to 1991, he served four terms in the Washington State House of Representatives, during which he served as chair of the Commerce and Labor, Trade and Economic Development, and Agriculture committees.

“I am grateful for the President’s confidence in me and have been blessed twice in being nominated to serve on the Federal Maritime Commission,” Vekich said. “Since my first day on the waterfront my work ethic has always been to keep cargo moving, and that will be my priority in executing my duties as a commissioner.”

“Keeping cargo moving,” he added, “is the mindset and emphasis needed to identify and address port and supply chain issues.”

By Pacific Maritime Magazine