Inland Rivers, Ports and Terminals Inc. (IRPT) will hold its annual conference April 23–25 in Baton Rouge, La., at the Raising Cane’s Convention Center, on the east bank of the Lower Mississippi River. Exhibitor move-in, IRPT board meeting, and a welcome reception and tour of the Port of Greater Baton Rouge will be April 22.
At the conference kickoff luncheon April 23, IRPT will feature several elected officials from Louisiana, including Sharon Weston Broome, the first woman to serve as mayor-president of the city of Baton Rouge and East Baton Rouge Parish; U.S. Rep. Garret Graves (R-La.); and Matthew Block, executive counsel to Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards.
Attendees will hear from an outstanding lineup of speakers throughout the three-day conference. Scheduled speakers include Mark Pointon with the Corps of Engineers’ Institute of Water Resources; Jay Hardman, executive director of the Port of Greater Baton Rouge; IRPT’s Aimee Andres; Marty Hettel, chairman of the Inland Waterway Users Board; and Jim Murphy with the Maritime Administration, among many others.
Norma Jean Mattei, professor and dean of engineering at the University of New Orleans and a member of the Mississippi River Commission, will deliver the keynote address at noon, April 24.
Also at the keynote luncheon, IRPT will honor longtime industry leaders Steve Taylor of Oakley’s Port 33; Rich Cooper, formerly of Ports of Indiana; Roger Lindner, formerly of Burlington River Terminal; and Rich Goldstein, formerly of Alter Logistics Company. Taylor will receive IRPT’s most influential person award, and Cooper will receive the lifetime achievement award. IRPT will honor both Lindner and Goldstein with impact awards.
“As an industry, we have only come this far thanks to the dedication and leaders before us,” said Aimee Andres, executive director of IRPT. “We would like nothing more than to honor those who have served before us. It is because of their focused attention to freight transportation, building our network and providing leadership that has allowed the inland river system and the many ports and terminals that serve it to continuously thrive.”
Topics to be discussed at the conference include the organization’s inland port/terminal grant program, 408 permitting, defining Corps of Engineers project boundaries, the latest technologies impacting the maritime industry, federal programs and regulations, infrastructure security, market trends and foreign trade, and projected growth of the cruise industry.
The conference will also include a meeting of the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials’ Council on Water Transportation.
For more information on IRPT’s annual conference, visit the organization’s website, www.irpt.net. Registration is available online. Hotel reservations may be made directly with the host hotel, the Hilton Baton Rouge Capitol Center.
For more information, contact Andres by phone at 618-468-3010 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.