During this week’s Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners Meeting, the Commission confirmed Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez’s appointment of Juan M. Kuryla as PortMiami’s new Director, succeeding Bill Johnson who is now head of Miami-Dade County’s Water and Sewer Department, the largest public utility of its kind in the Southeastern U.S.

“Port Director Juan Kuryla’s proven experience and leadership skills make him the ideal person to lead our Seaport Department,” said Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez. “I am confident that his wealth of knowledge and experience in the maritime industry—both in the cargo and cruise business—will continue to move PortMiami forward.”

Mr. Kuryla began his career with Miami-Dade County in the Parks and Recreation Department in 1987. He moved to the County’s Finance Department in 1993 as an administrative officer, where he managed a grants program funded by tourist tax dollars. After approximately a year and a half in the Finance Department, Mr. Kuryla took the position of Section Head at the County’s Public Works Department’s Road, Bridge and Canal Maintenance Division.

In 1996, Mr. Kuryla was promoted to work in the County Manager’s Office as an Assistant Administrator. He was promoted again in May 1998, to PortMiami as Assistant to the Port Director, where he oversaw the Department’s local, state and federal legislative agenda. From February 2001 through February 2007 Mr. Kuryla held the positions of Assistant Port Director for Intergovernmental Affairs and Assistant Port Director for Intergovernmental Affairs and Promotions.

In 2007, Mr. Kuryla was promoted to Assistant Port Director for Maritime Services. In this capacity, he served as co-lead negotiator for the Port on all long term agreements executed with cruise and cargo customers and oversaw Port operations, facilities management, berthing, and property management, in addition to the Port’s customer service, business development, public information and media relations. In 2009, Mr. Kuryla was promoted to Deputy Port Director. In this capacity, he was responsible for directly overseeing the Port’s five Assistant Port Directors. In May 2013, Mr. Kuryla was promoted to Seaport Director Designee.

Mr. Kuryla holds a Bachelor of Business Administration and Master of Business Administration from Florida International University. In 2010, Mr. Kuryla obtained his Professional Port Manager PPM® degree from the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA).