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Saathoff Named Managing Director, Corporate Projects at Port of Houston Authority

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HOUSTON, Oct. 8, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Port of Houston Authority Executive Director Len Waterworth has announced the hiring of Phyllis Saathoff as Managing Director of Corporate Projects. Saathoff was introduced to staff by Waterworth earlier today. In his introduction, Waterworth shared that Saathoff will initially concentrate on asset management and Texas Sunset Commission matters as part of her primary responsibilities.

"Phyllis brings a great deal of depth and demonstrated ability in the management and strategic guidance of a major port," said Waterworth. "Phyllis' experience along with her wealth of knowledge and expertise will help ensure that the Port Authority is well-positioned for the future."

Saathoff had served as Interim Executive Port Director/CEO of Port Freeport since April 2012. She joined Port Freeport in 1992, and served as its managing director from 1994, before taking the interim top executive position. Port Freeport ranks 16th among U.S. ports in the international cargo tonnage.

Over the span of her career at Port Freeport, Saathoff was responsible for directing overall port operations, management, and financial performance, including long-range strategic planning and development, negotiation of long-term leases, and development and management of its Foreign Trade Zone, among many other responsibilities.

Some of Saathoff's accomplishments include overseeing an increase of Port Freeport's operating revenues from $5 million to $15.6 million, and leading negotiations of a long-term lease for a LNG facility valued at more than $2.5 billion. During her tenure, Port Freeport received the Certificate of Excellence in Financial Reporting by the Government Finance Officers Association for 21 consecutive years.

A respected expert in the marine transportation industry and emergency preparedness, Saathoff was recognized as one of the Top 10 Women in Gulf Transportation by Gulf Shipper Magazine in 2004. She wrote the Emergency Preparedness and Continuity of Operations Planning Manual for Best Practices for ports, and is past chair of the Emergency Preparedness and Recovery working group of the American Association of Port Authorities.

Past president of the National Association of Foreign Trade Zones (2003-2005), and treasurer of the Texas Gulf Ports Association (1996-2007), Saathoff currently serves on the 2012 Port Authority Advisory Council to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT).

Saathoff earned a Bachelor of Science in Accounting, magna cum laude from the University of Houston-Clear Lake, is a certified public accountant and is certified as a Professional Port Manager®.

About the Port of Houston Authority

For nearly 100 years, the Port of Houston Authority has owned or operated the public cargo-handling facilities of the Port of Houston – the nation's largest port for foreign waterborne tonnage. The port is an economic engine for the Houston region, the state of Texas and the nation. It supports the creation of more than one million statewide jobs and more than 2.1 million nationwide jobs, and the generation of economic activity totaling more than $178.5 billion in Texas and $499 billion across the nation. For more information, visit the Port Authority website at: www.portofhouston.com

The Port of Houston Authority logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=720

CONTACT: Lisa Ashley, Director, Corporate Communications Office: (713) 670-2644 Cell: (832) 247-8179 Email: lashley@poha.com Bill Hensel, Manager, Corporate Communications Office: (713) 670-2893 Cell: (832) 452-5776 Email: bhensel@poha.com

Source:Port of Houston Authority