Richard D. Steinke, Executive Director of the Port of Long Beach, California, came to the Port in 1990 and was appointed to his current post in December 1997 by the Board of Harbor Commissioners.
With Mr. Steinke directing a top-notch, professional staff, the Port has launched the pioneering environmental Green Port Policy, paving the way for the Harbor Commission to approve the milestone San Pedro Bay Ports Clean Air Action Plan. His staff is also implementing the plan’s extremely ambitious Clean Truck Program, setting in motion a sweeping modernization of the truck fleet that will improve air quality by reducing pollution from short-haul trucks. With Mr. Steinke fostering partnerships within the industry, the Port’s Green Flag Program was recently awarded the National Association of Environmental Professionals Environmental Management Award. The program encourages ships and vessel operators to voluntarily slow down to 12 knots or less within 20 miles of the harbor, which greatly reduces fuel consumption and air pollution. Vessels that achieve compliance receive the prestigious Green Flag to fly.
As the Port’s chief executive, Mr. Steinke has successfully directed the redevelopment of the 500-acre, former Long Beach Naval Complex on Terminal Island into shipping terminals. The key component, a 375-acre complex leased to Hanjin Shipping Co., opened in September 2002 and is one of the largest container terminals in the world. He led negotiations that culminated in a 25-year lease with Hanjin under which the South Korean shipping company pays the Port at least $40 million a year or a total of at least $1 billion over the life of the lease.
Mr. Steinke launched a decade-long $1.9 billion capital improvement program to create new and more efficient shipping terminals, such as the new Hanjin facility, and redevelop existing ones to handle growing cargo demands.
Since Mr. Steinke was named Executive Director, Port container cargo volume has nearly doubled from four million container units in 1998 to more than seven million container units in 2007.
Before being named Executive Director, Mr. Steinke had been Deputy Executive Director of the Port of Long Beach for two years. In that capacity, he oversaw the Port's functions of transportation, environmental and long-range planning; construction, design and traffic engineering; marketing and customer development; real estate management and community, media and public relations.
Richard Steinke also served as the Port’s Properties Director for five years. In that capacity, he negotiated leases and other real estate agreements with Port customers and directed the wharfinger office, which is responsible for the day-to-day operations and enforcement of the Port tariff.
During his tenure as Properties Director, he was instrumental in negotiating the successful 1994 purchase of 725 acres of north harbor land and water area from Union Pacific Resources Company (UPRC). In September 1997, Hanjin opened a $277 million, 170-acre terminal on part of the property. That Pier A terminal was Hanjin’s home until it moved to its new Terminal Island facility.
Mr. Steinke also helped iron out a sale of 13.8 acres of land to oil refining firm, Ultramar, Inc. The sale included provisions for the Port's receipt of valuable easements for rail traffic through the property.
For the 2001-2002 year, Mr. Steinke was Chairman of the American Association of Port Authorities, an alliance of more than 150 port authorities in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean and Latin America. He has been a member of the AAPA’s Executive Committee as the representative for South Pacific ports and President of the California Association of Port Authorities. He has also served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Alameda Corridor Transportation Authority, the Intermodal Container Transfer Facility Joint Powers Authority, the Harbor Association of Industry and Commerce, St. Mary Medical Center in Long Beach and is a member of the Red Cross CEO Advisory Committee.
Mr. Steinke came to the Port in 1990 after serving five years as Airport Property Officer at Stapleton International Airport in his native Denver, Colorado. A graduate of Chadron State College in Nebraska, he has done post-graduate work at the University of Colorado.
Richard Steinke, his wife, Tamy, and their three daughters, Sarah, Kylie Marie and Lauren, reside in Long Beach.