Obituary: Marvin Ferguson
Marvin Ferguson, 92, longtime commissioner of the Ports of Indiana, died at his home in Indianapolis on March 1. Ferguson, who founded Ferguson Steel Company and served as president of the Indiana Steel Fabricators Association, was the longest-serving commissioner in the Ports of Indiana’s history. First appointed by Gov. Evan Bayh in 1993, Ferguson served the Ports of Indiana under six different governors before his retirement in 2018.
“Marvin has a great legacy with the Ports of Indiana,” said Ports of Indiana CEO Vanta Coda II. “I often talk of the foundation that I was handed when taking my current role. Marvin was a huge builder of that foundation. In many ways, we are what we are today because of Marvin. We say, ‘big things happen here,’ and that is heavily attributed to Marvin’s support.”
During his time as a commissioner, Ferguson served as secretary/treasurer, vice chairman and chairman of the organization’s board of directors. His leadership was invaluable during the most significant transformation of Indiana’s port authority from a minor, regionally-focused agency into a major statewide economic engine and industry leader. During his tenure, the Ports of Indiana greatly expanded the economic impact of the state’s port system to support more than 50,000 jobs and $8.2 billion in economic activity for the state each year.
“It’s not coincidental that Indiana governors representing both parties appointed and reappointed Marvin Ferguson to the Ports Commission where he served for 25 years,” said former Ports of Indiana CEO Rich Cooper. “They recognized Marvin’s personal and professional accomplishments as a highly successful business owner in the steel industry. That experience proved invaluable to Ports staff and his commission peers. Indiana has lost a great Hoosier who left an endearing and lasting imprint on our ports. He will be sorely missed, but never forgotten.”