Longtime PMSA President Retires

John McLaurin. Photo: Pacific Merchant Shipping Association.

After nearly three decades leading the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association, the organization’s president, John McLaurin, officially retired March 29.

McLaurin, who became PMSA president in 1995, has been a longtime advocate for the West Coast maritime industry, which has seen significant investment in port infrastructure, supply chain modernization and emissions reduction efforts.

PMSA itself grew under McLaurin’s tenure, widening and unifying various trade groups in California and Washington under one voice and expanding the organization from an office in San Francisco to three locations in Long Beach, Calif., Oakland and Seattle.

“John McLaurin leaves behind a legacy of success and integrity,” PMSA Board of Directors Chairman G. Scott Jones said. “During his tenure at PMSA, we have watched the waterfront progress tremendously. We wholeheartedly thank John for his outstanding leadership.”

McLaurin said it’s been “an immense privilege” to serve as PMSA president for 29 years.

“I am very proud of what the association staff and our membership have been able to accomplish together,” he said. “I have been blessed with the support of a board of directors and a team of colleagues who have been fully invested in supporting our mission to protect and grow our Pacific trade gateways.”

“I couldn’t be prouder of our team and am leaving confident that the industry will continue to be well represented by the PMSA team.”

PMSA announced last September that the organization’s Vice President and General Counsel, Mike Jacob, would succeed McLaurin as president. Jacob started with PMSA in 2005. Prior to this, he worked as a strategic consultant to local transportation agencies in the Bay Area, including the Port of Oakland and the Bay Area Rapid Transit District and held positions at the California state legislature.

“Mike is ideally positioned to lead PMSA into the future during a time of profound change in the industry,” McLaurin said in September. “He has been a trusted partner and friend for almost 20 years. His strategic vision is relied upon by PMSA member companies, decision-makers at multiple levels of government, supply chain partners and PMSA staff.”

By Karen Robes Meeks