MARK H. BUZBY
MARAD PADUCAH GATEWAY OFFICE ANNOUNCEMENT
INTRODUCE SECRETARY OF TRANSPORTATION
AUG. 23, 2018
Thank you Sandra. Good afternoon everyone.
It’s great to be back here in Paducah today for this exciting announcement. My colleagues and I at the Maritime Administration are very excited to be your partners in a place so strategically located in our nation’s heartland – truly at the epicenter of some of our nation’s most important water arteries.
As I mentioned a few weeks back when I was here addressing the western Kentucky Alliance for a Vibrant Economy – WAVE, I hold what you have done here as a real model of cooperation and integration at the local, state, and federal level. It’s very impressive.
As a Nation, we have no alternative but to develop, grow and modernize our ports and inland waterways systems, and the tug and barge industry operating along the Mississippi and beyond will be challenged to carry a larger part of our national freight load in the coming years. This new gateway office optimizes our agency’s mission to support your efforts — and those of others using our nation’s vast inland waterway system – on multiple fronts.
So we’re happy to be here.
Now it is my pleasure to introduce our Secretary of Transportation: Elaine L. Chao — a true champion of the maritime industry and the U.S. Merchant Marine.
She served as U.S. Secretary of Labor from 2001 to 2009, and was the first Asian American woman to be appointed to a president’s cabinet in American history.
Secretary Chao has had a distinguished career in the public, private and non-profit sectors. But we are most proud of the fact that she is a MARAD alumnae, having served as Deputy Maritime Administrator, followed by tours as Chairman of the Federal Maritime Commission and Deputy Secretary of Transportation.
In every speech I give, I always point out that we are exceptionally fortunate to have someone who truly “gets it” when it comes to the maritime industry and the business of shipping.
Ladies and gentlemen please join me in welcoming Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao.