Award to be presented at industry-wide luncheon on December 6 at the Renaissance Newark Airport Hotel

The Containerization & Intermodal Institute (CII) will honor Eugene D. Seroka, Executive Director at the Port of Los Angeles, with the 2021 Connie Award. The prestigious award will be presented at an industry-wide luncheon at the Renaissance Newark Airport Hotel on Monday, December 6.

“As the head of the nation’s largest port, Gene showed unwavering leadership throughout the pandemic by consistently rising to the occasion with innovative solutions to ever-changing challenges,” said Steve Blust, President, CII. “We are proud to honor him at this year’s Connie Award luncheon in Newark, which we are excited to host again this year after the pandemic forced us to postpone our events throughout 2020 as well most of 2021.”

CII will also recognize Bill Mongelluzzo, Senior Editor, Trans-Pacific at the Journal of Commerce (JOC), with the Lifetime Achievement Award for his journalistic contributions to the industry. In addition, CII will bestow a Special Recognition Award to the International Longshoremen’s Association (ILA), United States Maritime Alliance (USMX) and New York Shipping Association (NYSA) honoring their dedication to maintaining supply chain fluidity during the pandemic crisis.

Connie Award Recipient--Gene Seroka
Connie Award Recipient—Gene Seroka

For nearly 50 years, CII has been honoring industry leaders with the Connie Award to recognize those who have made significant contributions to containerization, world trade and the transportation field as well as for their innovative spirit.

The 2021 Connie recipient Gene Seroka has distinguished himself as a leader throughout his extensive 33-year career in shipping, global logistics and executive management. As the Executive Director of the Port of Los Angeles since 2014, he oversees the busiest container port in North America, which has experienced historic, record-breaking performances since his appointment. He concurrently serves as Chief Logistics Officer for the City of Los Angeles, leading citywide efforts to link organizations in need of Personal Protective Equipment with available supplies.

Prior to joining the port, Mr. Seroka held several managerial positions throughout his 26-year tenure at APL, formerly called American President Lines Ltd. Overseeing sales and management for one of the largest ocean carriers, Mr. Seroka lived around the world, including in Shanghai; Jakarta, Indonesia; Singapore; and Dubai. His duties at APL included a Phoenix-based position as head of the company’s commercial division for the Americas.

A native of Louisiana, Mr. Seroka received his bachelor’s and master’s degree in marketing from the University of New Orleans.

Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient – Bill Mongelluzzo

CII’s Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, Bill Mongelluzzo, Senior Editor, Trans-Pacific at the JOC, is responsible for covering Trans-Pacific trade, west coast ports and labor issues, harbor trucking and marine terminal productivity. Founded in New York in 1827, the JOC is considered the authority on international transportation logistics.

“Bill Mongelluzzo is a pioneer in international trade and logistics journalism and his reporting has strengthened the industry as a whole. We are all better informed as a result of his unflinching dedication to covering the important news and topics that impact our industry,” said Mr. Blust.

In 1972, Mr. Mongelluzzo started his journalism career as a reporter with the Times-Picayune in New Orleans. And, since 1980, he has been a prolific contributor to the JOC and, throughout his notable career, he has reported from the JOC offices in New Orleans, New York as well as Long Beach, where he opened the bureau office in 1985. A native of Chicago, he graduated from the University of Missouri School of Journalism and also holds a master’s degree in history from the University of New Orleans.

Special Recognition Award Honorees – International Longshoremen’s Association (ILA), United States Maritime Alliance (USMX) and New York Shipping Association (NYSA)

The ILA, USMX and the NYSA will each be presented with a Special Recognition Award that recognizes the challenges and solutions provided by these organizations during the uncertainty and disruptions caused by the COVID-10 pandemic.

“With unwavering professionalism, the ILA, USMX and NYSA represent the very best of our industry and what it means to go above and beyond,” mentioned Mr. Blust. “During the crisis, they placed themselves in harm’s way every day to ensure people had access to necessary resources for their daily needs and comfort; they are the unsung heroes that deserve our recognition and gratitude.”

Through their staunch commitment to duty and service, these esteemed labor and management organizations collaborated to maintain supply chain fluidity regardless of personal peril. Their actions were essential in replenishing store shelves and driving the global and national economies during this unprecedented and uncertain time.

The ILA is the largest union of maritime workers in North America, representing upwards of 65,000 longshoremen on the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts, Great Lakes, major U.S. rivers, Puerto Rico and Eastern Canada. USMX is an alliance of container carriers, direct employers and port associations serving the East and Gulf Coasts of the U.S. NYSA is a maritime industry professional service organization committed to representing the interests of its members and maximizing the efficiency, cost-competitiveness, safety and quality of marine cargo operations in the Port of New York and New Jersey.

“At CII, we are delighted to highlight the outstanding achievements of Gene Seroka, Bill Mongelluzzo as well as the ILA, USMX and NYSA. We look forward to honoring them as beacons of excellence at our December 6th Connie Award luncheon,” concluded Mr. Blust.