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American Shipper

Palmer to retire as head of Waterways Council

Palmer to retire as head of Waterways Council

The Waterways Council said Monday that President R. Barry Palmer will retire at the end of the year and that a search for his successor has begun.

   The group’s 240 members include waterway carriers, shippers, port authorities, shipping associations and waterway advocacy groups that seek government support for well-maintained ports and inland waterways.

   “It is nearly impossible to envision Waterways Council without Barry Palmer as its leader. Barry has been the face, as well as the heart and soul, of inland navigation advocacy for more than 25 years,” Chairman Dan Mecklenborg said.

   Palmer began his career in the waterways industry in May 1981 as executive director of DINAMO, the Association for the Development of Inland Navigation in America's Ohio Valley.

   In June 2003, Palmer came to Washington to help create a new national organization, Waterways Council Inc., which grew out of Waterways Work! — a campaign focused on advocating for modernized waterways infrastructure — and DINAMO. Highlights of Palmer's leadership success at the Waterways Council include increased funding of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' budgets for priority projects for the inland waterways system, spending down of the ballooning surplus in the Inland Waterways Trust Fund, and the historic passage of the Water Resources Development Act of 2007 authorizing modernization of the Upper Mississippi and Illinois rivers.

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