Photos courtesy of Port of Seattle
Tom Albro, Bill Bryant, John Creighton and newcomer Courtney Gregoire comprise the Seattle Port Commission. One more seat is left to be filled.

Ballard no longer represented on Port Commission

Still time to apply for vacant position

With Ballardite Gael Tarleton having left her position as Port Commission President to become a 36th District Representative in the Washington State Legislature, Ballard officially has no one on the commission representing the neighborhood, despite it being home to two Port-controlled marinas and the Maritime Industrial Center.

Instead, taking Tarleton's place is Microsoft attorney Courtney Gregoire, the daughter of now-former Governor Christine Gregoire. The younger Gregoire was appointed to the position last week.

However, another position will be open: Commissioner Rob Holland's resignation takes effect on March 15. Port of Seattle will be accepting applications for his vacated seat and will automatically consider everyone who has already applied. Application packets are available at For more info on applying for the opening, see the bottom of this article.

While certainly not the behemoth that the Port of Seattle is, there is still work to be tended to in the Ballard area. Here's a brief overview of the three Port-controlled entities in the Ballard area.


Sunset at Shilshole Bay Marina/Photo by Sarai Rachel (Flickr/CC)

Shilshole Bay Marina, advertised as the Northwest's premiere sailing center, provides moorage to a plethora of sailboats and pleasure crafts, and is home to the largest liveaboard community on the west coast, with over 300 boats. For those who are unsure, it's that long stretch of boats on Seaview Ave NW before you hit Golden Gardens.

The marina just turned 50 last year. The property was bought by the Port as early as 1931, but due to the Depression the marina wasn't completed until 1962.


Fishermen's Terminal at night/Photo by Erik Hannon (Flickr/CC)

Fishermen's Terminal is something like an older brother to Shilshole Bay Marina. Turning 100 years old in 2014, Fishermen's Terminal provides moorage for more than 600 boats and is mainly home to the vessels of the North Pacific Fishing fleet, but is also open to visitors and pleasure boaters. For the common Seattleite, the Terminal is known to provide moorage to vessels from the Discovery Channel's "Deadliest Catch."

The Maritime Industrial Center

The Maritime Industrial Center, located along the ship canal not far from Fishermen's Terminal, provides 1,518 linear feet of concrete dock space for loading (mostly seafood and domestic goods) and repair work, as well as some moorage.

Purchased by the port in 1992, the Center's history stretches back to the 1920s, when it was owned by the Rattan and Wood Chair Company and then the Coast Guard. Now it is home to an active loading dock and provides office space for several businesses, mostly related to boating and fishing.

So, if any Ballardites are passionate about the local waterways and marinas in the Ballard area, now is the time to apply for a new position. While Tarleton's seat was filled, Rob Holland, who resigned last month after the Seattle Times published a damning article, has vacated his. For more information on that, see the press release below:


"The Commission will begin a second public process to fill Rob Holland’s seat, who is resigning from the Commission effective March 15. The decision on Holland’s seat will be completed in late April or early May.

The Commission will accept applications for Holland’s seat until noon on March 22. Application packets are available on the Commission website at Completed applications are public records subject to disclosure. Applicants must be a King County resident and registered to vote in the county. The Commission Office will conduct background and reference checks on all finalists.

The position pays $500 a month, with benefits, and requires some travel. A resolution is pending before the commission to increase commissioner salaries to the same level as those of state legislators.

All of the finalists not chosen for Tarleton's position will be automatically considered for the second position unless a finalist chooses to end her candidacy. Any of the applicants for the first vacancy will also be considered if the candidate advises the Commission Office of continuing interest.

On March 26, new applicants will be asked to address the Commissioners for three minutes or submit a written statement. Returning applicants may address the Commissioners if they so choose, but an appearance is not necessary.

Both seats will be on the ballot in November. The election for Holland’s position will fill the seat for four years, while the winner in the race for Tarleton’s seat would serve only until 2015."

Zachariah Bryan can be reached at

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