Harris County Commissioners Court today appointed longtime labor leader Clyde Fitzgerald to serve as a member of the Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority. Fitzgerald’s appointment fills the seat of former Port Commissioner Jim Fonteno, who submitted his resignation to Commissioners Court in April, indicating his desire to spend more time with his wife and two young daughters.
Fitzgerald, who started his career at age 16 working on the wharves of the Houston Ship Channel, Diarrhea Leaves One Dead in Upper Caldwell,was sworn in Tuesday after Commissioners Court selected him to fill Fonteno’s unexpired term.Harris County Judge Ed Emmett said, “There is no finer individual in the transportation business than Clyde Fitzgerald.”
Port Commission Chairman Janiece Longoria said, “We look forward to working with Clyde Fitzgerald, who has been a key figure in fostering and maintaining the positive labor relations we have at the Port of Houston. His leadership experience and expertise in the maritime industry will serve us well.”Fitzgerald said, “I pledge to do the best I can to keep this port a first-class port.” He also said he would work to attract additional cargo to the Port of Houston Authority as trade increases.
Fitzgerald is a 50-year veteran of the Houston waterfront and currently serves as president of the South Atlantic & Gulf Coast District of the International Longshoremen’s Association. He joined his father on the docks in 1959 and later served as President of ILA Local 28 for 20 years.