J. Christopher Lytle, Port of Long Beach Executive Director since November 2011, said today that he will resign to take the top post at the Port of Oakland. Lytle will remain at Long Beach until mid-July, and is expected to begin his new job in Oakland shortly thereafter.
Lytle, who first joined the Port of Long Beach in 2006 as a managing director, was promoted to Deputy Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer in 2008. He became the Port’s top executive after the retirement of longtime executive director Richard D. Steinke.
“The Board, Port staff and our customers will miss Chris, and we wish him well in his next endeavor,” said Susan E. Anderson Wise, President of the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners. “He has served admirably in all his roles here at the Port, and a lot of great things have been accomplished while he’s served as our Executive Director.
“As commissioners, our top priority is the stability and continuity of leadership at the Port of Long Beach. We will move quickly to identify the very top candidates to be our next Executive Director.
“Everyone who works at the Port – executives, managers and staff – are talented and dedicated individuals, and as always, they will continue their great work during this transition for our customers and stakeholders. Our $4 billion capital improvement program is well underway, and those projects will move forward without interruption,” Wise said.
Before Lytle’s departure, the Board of Harbor Commissioners will name an interim executive director.
Lytle has served at the top echelons of the Port throughout its transformation into “The Green Port,” as it carried out its commitment to reduce environmental impacts of its operations. The Port of Long Beach is the nation’s second busiest container seaport.
“My time here in Long Beach has been wonderful and I have been very privileged to work with a talented, dedicated staff and the best customers of any seaport in the world,” Lytle said. “I’m happy to have played a role in implementing groundbreaking environmental initiatives, attracting new business to the Port, and kicking off $4 billion in development projects that will prepare the Port of Long Beach to compete in the future. I will miss the Port of Long Beach, but look forward to exciting new career challenges in Oakland.”