Port of Bellingham expected to name new executive director Friday afternoon

BELLINGHAM - Port of Bellingham commissioners are expected to announce Friday afternoon, Nov. 9, they have selected a new executive director.

The announcement had been expected Tuesday, Nov. 6, but at that meeting Commission President Scott Walker said that the selection process is taking longer than he had anticipated.

Commissioners met all Friday morning before saying they would have a public meeting early this afternoon for an announcement. The new director will replace Charlie Sheldon, who departed in April 2012.

The position has a salary range of $130,000 to $155,000. Port Chief Financial Officer Rob Fix has been interim director since Sheldon's ouster.

The three finalists are:

- Les Reardanz, a former Bellingham assistant city attorney who is now chief administrative officer at the Port of Everett. Before taking the Everett job, Reardanz played a key role in negotiations between the city and the port over waterfront redevelopment and held the title of waterfront project manager. He is a captain in the U.S. Navy Reserve who has served in Afghanistan and Iraq.

- Jonathan Daniels, executive director for the Port of Oswego, N.Y., since 2007. He also has had positions with the Eastern Maine Development Corp.; the city of Bangor; the Port of Greater Baton Rouge, La.; and the Eastport (Maine) Port Authority.

- William Panos, public works and port director for the city of West Sacramento, Calif., since 2007. He also has held positions with the Washington state Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction; the city of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho; Los Angeles Unified Schools; Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection; TRW Automotive Group and the California State University Chancellor's Office.