The board of directors of the Georgia Ports Authority have elected William McKnight as chairman.
“As an entrepreneur and business leader with more than 30 years in the construction industry, Will McKnight has the experience necessary to keep GPA at the forefront, delivering opportunity for growth to large and small businesses across the state,” Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp said.
McKnight, who has served as vice chairman since 2018, will assume his new responsibilities July 1.
“I’m excited to help lead the GPA at a time when Gov. Kemp has made the success of small business a major priority,” McKnight said. “Our ports’ role in helping Georgia companies connect with buyers across the globe can mean a world of difference to small operations hoping to expand.”
Along with McKnight, the board elected Patrick “Kelly” Farr Jr. as vice chairman, while Joel Wooten will remain in his role as secretary-treasurer.
McKnight thanked outgoing Chairman Jimmy Allgood for his example of steady leadership over the past three years. Under Allgood’s leadership, annual container volumes grew from 3.6 million twenty-foot equivalent container units to an estimated 4.5 million TEUs, a 25 percent increase.
“During Jimmy’s tenure, we’ve seen the completion of the outer harbor deepening, we’ve purchased 10 ship-to-shore cranes, kicked off construction of the largest on-terminal rail facility in the country, and expanded our auto capacity,” McKnight said. “Now, we have to continue that momentum to bring the efficiencies of Georgia’s deepwater terminals to even more customers.”
“I am proud to say that the team here at your ports are the best trained, most experienced and dedicated professionals you will find anywhere in the world, and I don’t say that lightly,” Allgood said. “Over the course of my career, I have had the opportunity to work with many boards, staff members and customers and what we have managed to build at Georgia’s ports is world class and second to none. Thank you, team, for a job well done.”