A. Paul Anderson
Joe W. Lopano
Captain Holly Najarian
Colonel Mark Tillman (Ret.)
Gen. Barry McCaffrey (Ret.)
A. Paul Anderson
Paul Anderson is the current President and CEO of Port Tampa Bay. Prior to his arrival here in Tampa in December of 2012, he held a series of high-profile leadership positions in both the public and private sectors. In 2003, Mr. Anderson, was nominated to the Federal Maritime Commission by President George W. Bush and was unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate in 2004, he served a five-year term ending in 2008. A highlight of Anderson’s service included his appointment to the Committee on Marine Transportation, a cabinet-level strategy group responsible for the nation’s seaports and reporting directly to the President.
He served as the Chief Executive Officer for the Jacksonville Port Authority and spent 10 years as an executive with JM Family Enterprises, a diversified automobile business headquartered in Deerfield Beach, Florida. Paul also served as a senior director of Seabulk Marine, Inc., an international marine transportation company in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Paul has also served as an advisor on intermodal issues to multiple governors including former Florida governors Jeb Bush and Charlie Crist.
Paul recently was elected Chairman of the Florida Ports Council by his fellow Florida’s port directors. He also serves multiple national leadership positions including the board of directors of the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) and Coalition for America's Gateways and Trade Corridors (CAGTC). Paul also serves on the board of directors for the Florida Chamber of Commerce; Associated Industries of Florida; Moffitt Cancer Center Foundation; Leukemia Lymphoma Society; Florida Aquarium; Visit Tampa Bay Advisory Board; Tampa Hillsborough EDC; Hillsborough Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO); and the National Executive Committee of the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship.
Additional presentations from panelists:
Rear Admiral Paul Thomas - USCG
Joe W. Lopano
Joe was appointed CEO on January 1, 2011, as Tampa International Airport’s new Chief Executive Officer. He has worked 37 years in the aviation industry. Prior to accepting the CEO position in Tampa, he worked at the Dallas/Fort Worth Airport for 14 years as its Executive Vice President for Marketing and Terminal Management. His experience also encompasses 19 years in the airline industry, including serving in leadership positions at Continental Airlines.
Joe serves on the boards of the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce, Visit Tampa Bay, the Westshore Alliance, the Tampa Bay Partnership, the Tampa Bay Defense Alliance, the U.S. Travel Association’s Gateway Airports Council and the Hillsborough County Metropolitan Planning Organization. He is a member of the executive committees for the Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corporation, the Airports Council International–North America U.S. Policy Board and the Tony Jannus Society. He is an Honorary Commander at MacDill Air Force Base, and was selected to participate in Leadership Florida. He serves on the board of Airports Council International-World and the National Advisory Committee on Travel and Tourism Infrastructure, which advises the U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary.
Joe was named Visit Tampa Bay’s 2015 Ambassador of the Year and received the 2015 Aviation Professional of the Year Award from the Florida Department of Transportation.
He received a bachelor’s in finance and accounting from Pace University in New York. He and his wife, Janet, live in South Tampa and have three grown children.
Bryan Koon has served as the Director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management since February, 2011. Prior to joining the Division, he worked with Wal-Mart Stores, Inc for five years as Operations Manager and Director of Emergency Management.
Bryan’s experience within emergency management includes the private sector, federal government, and state government. Bryan worked at the White House Military Office for seven years where he was a Watch Officer in the President’s Emergency Operations Center while on active duty with the U.S. Navy. He then spent two years as Training Officer for Presidential Contingency Programs, conducting training and exercises for the White House Military Office, United States Secret Service, Federal Emergency Management Agency, and others. After concluding his active duty Navy service, Bryan continued to serve at the White House as a contractor from SRA, International.
Bryan’s specialty in the Navy was as a surface warfare officer. He served on two ships, USS INDEPENDENCE (CV 62) and USS PORT ROYAL (CG 73), where he made several deployments while serving as Main Machinery Room Officer and Main Propulsion Assistant.
Bryan is currently serving as the President of the National Emergency Management Association, Vice Chairman of the Multi-Hazard Mitigation Council, and is on the Board of Directors of the National Information Sharing Consortium
Bryan has a BS in Natural Resources from Cornell University, and an MBA and a Graduate Certificate in Emergency and Crisis Management from the George Washington University. He has also attended the Executive Leader’s Program at the Center for Homeland Defense and Security at the Navy Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA. Bryan lives in Tallahassee with his wife, Jennifer, and their three sons.
Captain Holly Najarian
As Sector Commander, Captain Najarian serves as Captain of the Port, Officer in Charge of Marine Inspection, Search and Rescue Mission Coordinator, Federal On-Scene Coordinator and Federal Maritime Security Coordinator while directing Coast Guard operations along the west coast of Florida and throughout the Tampa Bay region. Sector St. Petersburg is comprised of 2700 people and 12 units, including five search and rescue stations, six cutters, and an Aids to Navigation Team.
Previously, Captain Najarian was assigned to Coast Guard Headquarters in the Office of Budget and Programs (CG-821). Her portfolio spanned Inspections and Compliance (CG-5PC), Commercial Regulations and Standards (CG-5PS), Marine Environmental Response (CG-MER) and Incident Management and Preparedness Policy (CG-5RI), including 15 program offices in the Ops Ashore Prevention and Response Communities. Responsibilities included the drafting, review, analyses and formalization of policy, resource proposals, legislation and programmatic initiatives for the Coast Guardâ€™s CFO, Vice and Commandant. She ensured program alignment with senior leadership direction, responded to external queries, prepared reports for Congress, DHS and OMB, and prepared Flag Officers and staffs for Congressional Hearings and briefs.
Captain Najarian received her Coast Guard commission in 1993 under the Coast Guard's Direct Commission Maritime Academy Graduate Program. Her career began as an inspector trainee at Marine Safety Office Jacksonville, Florida where she acquired both of her major inspector designations. She was then assigned as Supervisor of Marine Safety Field Office Portsmouth, New Hampshire; responsible for all marine safety and environmental response missions along the New Hampshire coastline.
After only two years at the field office she was selected to attend graduate school, followed by a tour as a Staff Engineer and Machinery Branch Chief at the Marine Safety Center in Washington D.C. She was responsible for the review of plans for the design, construction, and repair of vessels in accordance with international, laws, regulations and policies and specialized in fire suppression systems, lifesaving, and machinery design. She was then assigned as Chief of Inspections and Investigations at Sector Boston.
Captain Najarian followed up the tour in Boston with assignment as the Senior Prevention Assignment Officer at the Coast Guard Personnel Service Center. She provided career counseling, mentorship, and strategically placed senior career Prevention Officers into assignments to allow for career development and optimized mission execution.
In her follow-on tour as Deputy Commander, Sector Long Island Sound she served as Acting Sector Commander, Alternate Captain of the Port, and Acting Officer in Charge Marine Inspection across 300 miles of Connecticut and New York coastline. She supervised over 700 Active Duty, Reserve, and civilian employees, 1300 Auxiliary, 3 cutters, 8 stations, 2 aids to navigation teams, a Marine Safety Detachment and a Sector Field Office.
Captain Najarian is a graduate of Maine Maritime Academy and has held an Unlimited Third Assistant Engineer's license for steam and diesel vessels. She earned a Master's of Science in Fire Protection Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), as well as, an additional Master's degree from WPI in Business. She has been awarded three Coast Guard Meritorious Service Medals, two Coast Guard Commendation Medals and four Coast Guard Achievement Medals, as well as the Outstanding Military Volunteer Service Medal and several unit, team and special service awards.
Colonel Mark Tillman (Ret.)
Chosen as the nation’s 12th Presidential pilot, Colonel (ret) Mark W. Tillman served as pilot and commander of Air Force One from 2001-2009. Col. Tillman was at the controls of Air Force One through numerous national events. Most notably, he protected the President on September 11, 2001 by keeping him out of harms way and connecting the flying oval office to the nation’s first responders.
Another historic event was being the first pilot to fly the Commander-in-Chief into a war zone. The challenge was unprecedented--transport the most targeted man in the world into the heart of terrorism. One mistake would have left the President open to attack and cost the lives of US service members. Col. Tillman personally orchestrated and executed the covert operation with flawless success. His planning, done in complete secrecy, allowed for a complete surprise to the entire world.
Col. Tillman’s distinguished career spans 30 years in the United States Air Force. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross in 2004 and promoted to Brigadier General by the President of the United States—the first military line officer to receive this honor. For political reasons this was not confirmed by the Senate, hence Tillman retired as a Colonel.
A man devoted to serving his country, this captivating storyteller will give you a first-hand account of remarkable moments in history.
NTSB Chairman Deborah Hersman is recognized as one of the nation's most visionary and passionate safety leaders who advocates for safety across all modes of transportation. Among her many initiatives, Chairman Hersman has focused attention and actions on distracted driving, child passenger safety, and helping accident victims and their families. She emphasizes the NTSB's role as "the conscience and the compass of the transportation industry."
Hersman has been the Board Member on-scene for more than 20 major transportation accidents, chaired scores of NTSB hearings, forums and events, and regularly testifies before Congress. Her leadership has created a more transparent and accountable organization by significantly increasing the quantity and quality of NTSB information available on the agency's website, holding more public meetings to highlight safety issues, and embracing social media to communicate with stakeholders and citizens.
Hersman has overseen the timely completion of several high-profile accident investigations during her tenure as Chair, including:
- Crash of a regional jet near Buffalo, NY in 2009
- Collision of two transit trains in Washington, DC in 2009
- Pipeline rupture in San Bruno, CA in 2010
- Crash of a chartered airplane carrying Senator Stevens in Aleknagik, AK in 2010
- Crash at the Reno Air Races, NV in 2011
- Collision between a tankship and a containership in the Houston Ship Channel in 2011
- Grade crossing collision with a parade float in Midland, TX 2012
- Collision of two freight trains in Goodwell, OK in 2012
Created as an independent federal agency in 1967, the NTSB has investigated more than 132,000 accidents and made more than 13,500 safety recommendations. The NTSB is recognized internationally as a preeminent accident investigation organization. Hersman serves as the chief executive of the agency, which has 400-plus employees and an annual budget of more than $100 million.
Hersman was first appointed as a Board Member by President Bush in 2004 and was reappointed to two additional five-year terms by President Obama in 2009 and 2013. She was appointed Chairman by President Obama in 2009, 2011 and 2013 with unanimous Senate confirmation votes.
Previously, Hersman was a senior advisor to the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation from 1999-2004 and served as Staff Director and Senior Legislative Aide to West Virginia Congressman Bob Wise from 1992-1999. Her efforts contributed to the passage of milestone bills such as the Motor Carrier Safety Improvement Act of 1999, Pipeline Safety Improvement Act of 2002, Transportation Equity Act of the 21st Century, and Amtrak Reform and Accountability Act.
Hersman received B.A. degrees in Political Science and International Studies from Virginia Tech, and an M.S. in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from George Mason University. She is a certified child passenger safety technician and holds a commercial driver's license (with passenger, school bus, and air brake endorsements) as well as a motorcycle endorsement.
Gen. Barry McCaffrey (Ret.)