New Paducah Port Director Seeks Growth Opportunities
As the new executive director of the Paducah-McCracken County Port Authority in Paducah, Ky., Tim Cahill brings with him international experience, working around the globe for companies involved in commodities, end-to-end supply chain management, infrastructure and stevedoring.
Cahill took over as executive director June 1. He is originally from Virginia, but most recently resided in Florida. He previously served as chief operating officer of Cargo Solutions, a business entity derived from parent company Inchcape Shipping Services, which is based in Houston and London. In that position, he said, he routinely traveled 350,000 miles a year. He was responsible for international development for Cargo Solutions, and, as the executive vice president of Inchcape’s North American entities, oversaw 42 offices in five countries.
Inchcape, the largest marine services company in the world, has 300 offices in 70 countries. Cahill had owned a group of companies managing 30 million tons per year of bulk and break-bulk commodities before selling them to Inchcape in 2007.
“I have managed the transfer of materials my whole career, whether it be here in the U.S. or globally where we had offices,” Cahill said.
His experience has ranged from dealing with agricultural products to coal, steel, minerals, liquid products and automobiles.
Until coming to the port, his employment had always been in the private sector, but Cahill said he was drawn to the opportunities for growth in Paducah, an area he sees as vibrant and full of potential with so many river-related industries located either in town or nearby. 00 cumulative feet of river frontage at the confluence of the Ohio and Tennessee rivers. It is also home to Foreign Trade Zone #294, providing benefits to shippers involved in international trade, and is a U.S. Department of Transportation-Maritime Administration Marine Highway Designated Port.
“It is a facility that has been challenged to grow, and I like a good challenge when it comes to developing new opportunities,” Cahill said.
In recent years, the riverport has been the recipient of grants to prepare for potential container-on-barge service, including those that allowed for the purchase of container handling equipment and installation of thick concrete pads that support the weight of loaded container stacks.
“We have really gone after the container-on-barge business,” Cahill said, adding that continuing to aggressively pursue that business is an important economic priority.
He added that the availability of land, including land with direct riverfront access, is a port strength, as is its staffing.
“We have a very good, tenured team here of folks who have been here a lot of years,” Cahill said. “They are all extremely engaged with our business partners and their business.”
Cahill emphasized the importance of maintaining and continuing to build upon the riverport’s relationship with existing customers and lease-holders, whom he prefers to refer to as partners.
As for plans for the future, he would like to see the port increase its storage capacity and determine how to increase its efficiency, benefiting those partners, the port itself and the surrounding community.
“Like all terminals, we have to find new opportunities, new commodities and new customers,” Cahill said. “That’s what I’m charged with doing.”
He added, “Hopefully we can find some good opportunities for people who want to expand to this part of the country.”
Outside of work, Cahill enjoys golf and watersports. He is married to Sandy Cahill, and the couple have two adult daughters living in Washington, D.C., and in Tulsa, Okla., as well as two young grandchildren.