Janiece Longoria Is First Woman To Chair The Houston Port Authority

Janiece Longoria: "The constitution and laws of the United States and of the state of Texas."

Ed Emmett: "So help me God."

Longoria: "So help me God."

Emmett: "Congratulations." 

Longtime Port of Houston Commissioner Janiece Longoria was unanimously appointed the first chairwoman of the Houston Port Commission, by a joint meeting of Harris County Commissioners Court and Houston City Council.

This is Harris County Judge Ed Emmett:

"Janiece Longoria is an outstanding individual, well educated, very bright, very articulate, has served on the Port Commission for ten years. So, she knows what she's doing and I think she'll be an outstanding chair."

Longoria replaces Jim Edmonds, who led the commission since first being appointed in 2000, and announced he was stepping down last June. The makeup of the Port of Houston Commission and how the port chair and commissioners are appointed, was the subject of discussion at the port's recent review by the State's Sunset Advisory Commission.

Judge Emmett says the issue will certainly be discussed in this year's legislative session:

"I mentioned to several legislators who were saying, 'Well we need somebody completely new.' I said, 'Well, that's gonna be difficult because if during your hearings in the Legislature, you want to talk to somebody about why things are the way they are, somebody brand new can't tell you that.' So in that sense, having chair now, Chair Longoria is a good thing because for better or for worse, she can explain why the port does things the way it does."

Before she took the oath as leader of the Port of Houston Authority's governing body, Longoria told Commissioners Court that she will continue to work for the best interest of the port.

"I do this with the support of the Houston Pilots, and the men and women that labor on the docks, and on the ships that call on our port."

She said the port will build on the solid foundation and move forward to create jobs, providing economic prosperity, and assure the port takes its rightful place as one of the leading ports in the nation.

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