The Port of Oakland Tuesday named John Driscoll, a former ocean carrier executive, to head its maritime department, effective Jan. 27.
The hiring comes seven months after Christopher Lytle left the top job at the Port of Long Beach and took over as executive director with a mandate to restore the credibility of the city's port department following a financial scandal that cost the jobs of former executive director Omar Benjamin and Maritime Director James Wong.
Deputy Executive Director Jean Banker has served as acting maritime director since October 2012, when Wong was forced to retire for improperly filing travel expense reimbursement claims for personal items and entertaining clients at a strip club.
Driscoll most recently served as vice president of export sales at CMA CGM (America), the third largest container line in the world. The Port of Oakland is a major gateway for U.S. agricultural exports and its export volume actually exceeds imports. Last year, the port handled 986,760 TEU of loaded containers for export compared to 791,624 TEU of imports.
"John's private sector experience in maritime operations, marketing and sales will help us grow our business, which will ultimately benefit our business partners, customers and community," Lytle said.
As maritime director, Driscoll will oversee administration, finance, customer service, planning and development, and seaport security.
During his 30-year career, Driscoll also worked for Sea-Land Service and Maersk Line. He joined CMA CGM in 2005, and helped the company expand in the Caribbean and Latin America, producing double digit growth on average each year. In 2008, he was promoted to senior vice president, where he led sales, trade and marketing for the company's U.S. operations and helped
Driscoll has a degree in business management from the University of Maryland.