Lon White was appointed as Kodiak’s new harbormaster on Wednesday, May 7.
He came to the port as a harbor officer in 1982 and worked his way up the ranks to deputy harbormaster. In 1995 White turned down his first opportunity to take on the role of harbormaster but declined, saying he was confident he could handle the operational aspects but he needed more seasoning in management, especially the politics of navigating city, state and federal bureaucracies so necessary to getting funding and approval for critical infrastructure projects the port was badly in need of.
The city manager put him on the selection committee assigned to choose a new harbormaster. Retired Army Corps of Engineers officer Marty Owen was selected and took over in July, 1995.
“I chose my own boss,” said White. “It was a very good decision. Marty has done so much for the port and the economy of Kodiak because of his top-level management and people skills. I was blessed to have a mentor and a teammate like Marty for 19 years.”
Owen retired on May 9. His retirement ceremony was held at the Fishermen’s Research Center on Near Island with 150 people in attendance. A choir from St. Innocent’s Academy performed a song written for the occasion in tribute to Owen.