Meet the Board

Ulysses B. Hammond, Interim Executive Director

Ulysses B. Hammond has an unwavering passion for and a commitment to public service.

He has decades of executive experience managing and leading public and private institutions in Michigan, Washington, DC, and the State of Connecticut.

Hammond served for fifteen years as Vice President for Administration and Legal Affairs at Connecticut College where he oversaw all campus administration and general business operations at the New London based college that boasts 1,600 students. During his tenure, Hammond led the college’s $100 million capital project, which included the construction of the Science Center (with geothermal heating & cooling system), Library, Fitness Center, Power House and Hillel Center.

Building bridges and getting people to work together for a common cause, has been a key differentiator and a guiding principle for Ulysses B. Hammond during his distinguished career.

“I’m a collaborative leader and very 360 oriented when it comes to project management,” Hammond says. “I try to touch as many bases as possible.

Raised in Washington, D.C. as the oldest son in a family of nine, Hammond credits his mother, an evangelical minister, with inspiring him to put others before himself and his father for his work ethic and board service.

“Ulysses is one of the most gifted leaders I have ever known. First, his personal values put transparency and ethics above all else,” said B.Michael Rauh, Jr., President & CEO, Chelsea Groton Bank. “Second, he believes deeply in inclusion. He routinely makes sure to draw out the thoughts and opinions of everyone around the table, even if they are hesitant to speak up. He understands that none of us is as smart as all of us. And lastly, he is humble, kind and genuine. Ulysses is at ease with whomever he is engaging with, has a self-deprecating manner, and truly wants to make the world a better place. We are very lucky to have a person of Ulysses’ talents, skills and experience in our community.”

Ulysses B. Hammond does not run away from a challenge, instead he meets those challenges head on. In 1990, Hammond became the first African-American to serve as Chief Executive Officer for the District of Columbia Courts, a $120 million operation. In a bold effort to establish fairness in the court’s hiring and promotions system, Hammond instituted a more equitable and transparent managerial process.

Ulysses B. Hammond has brought his transformative and collaborative leadership style to several Connecticut based organizations including Chelsea Groton Bank, where as a board member, he currently chairs both the Audit Committee and the Investment Committee. Hammond also sits on the Governance Committee and the Strategic Planning Committee for the bank. And recently, Hammond chaired the board of the Connecticut Mirror. He is also the co-chair of the Innovation Center of the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut.

“Ulysses Hammond established himself in his leadership of the federal judiciary system decades ago as a person of impeccable integrity,” said Dr. Stephen M. Coan, President and Chief Executive Officer, Mystic Aquarium. “In Eastern Connecticut, he has led Connecticut College as a senior executive, as well as the Eastern Connecticut Chamber of Commerce and Lawrence and Memorial Hospital as a Board Chair. He has exceptional leadership skills combined with an attention to managerial detail and, always, a clear moral compass for doing what is right.”

Ulysses B. Hammond Achievements & Accolades also include:

  • Associate State Court Administrator for the Michigan Supreme Court
  • Court Executive for the Third Judicial Circuit Court in Detroit
  • Served as President of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Scholarship Trust Fund
  • Past Board Chair of Lawrence + Memorial Healthcare System
  • Chair of the Connecticut Mirror Board of Directors
  • Dominion Power Strong Men and Women Excellence in Leadership Award
  • Mitchell College President’s Council
  • Town of Waterford Elections Moderator
  • Liberty Bell Award (New London County Bar Association)
  • William Crawford Distinguished Service Award (Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut)
  • Honorary Doctor of Laws from Kenyon College
  • Connecticut College Power House Building Renamed in His Honor

Ulysses B. Hammond earned a Bachelor of Arts from Kenyon College, a Master of Public Administration from Wayne State University, and a Juris Doctorate from Wayne State University Law School. He lives with his wife Christine in Waterford, Connecticut.

Board of Directors

David Kooris, Chair

David Kooris became Acting Chair of the Board of the Connecticut Port Authority in July 2019 and was elected Chair by his peers in January 2020.

Mr. Kooris has nearly twenty-years of experience in urban and regional planning, economic development, sustainability, resilience, and urban design in the public, private and civic sectors. He is currently President of Stamford Downtown, a business improvement district representing the major property owners, companies, and residents of that neighborhood. There he manages a phenomenal team of professionals responsible for maintaining and activating the public realm of the core of the city. Stamford Downtown produces concerts, parades, public art exhibits, and a multitude of smaller events and is responsible for cleaning and greening downtown’s streetscape. It is the primary voice for responsible development policy, ensuring that public infrastructure and private investment work together to continue to make Stamford Downtown the most vibrant urban neighborhood in the state and the region.

Prior to January of 2020, Mr. Kooris was Deputy Commissioner at the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development.  He was responsible for orchestrating the placed-based components of the state’s economic development strategy including transit-oriented development, brownfields, capital projects, waterfront, historic preservation, the arts, tourism, and opportunity zones.  He focused there on coordinating public sector infrastructure investment to best prepare communities for private sector growth while enhancing environmental sustainability and quality of life for all. Before DECD, Mr. Kooris was Director of Resilience for Connecticut’s Department of Housing.  There, he managed two federal grants totaling nearly $65 million for coastal resilience planning across Fairfield and New Haven Counties and the design and construction of several pilot projects for green infrastructure, raised mobility corridors, distributed energy generation, and 21st century flood protection in the City of Bridgeport.

Before state service, Mr. Kooris was the Director of the Office of Planning and Economic Development and Executive Director of the Redevelopment Agency for the City of Bridgeport.  There, he oversaw ten departments in the creation of the city’s revitalization strategy and its execution in tangible public and private investments.  Mr. Kooris began his career at Regional Plan Association where he held several positions, most notably Vice President and Connecticut Director.  His work there focused on helping individuals, communities, and agencies better understand the link between social, economic, and environmental factors and better position the tri-state region and its neighborhoods for a sustainable future through coordinated land use and transportation planning.

Grant W. Westerson, Vice-Chair
Yacht Safety, LLC

Grant Westerson has been on the Connecticut waterfront and active in the Recreational Marine Industry since his youth when his family started a premium yacht dealership in Essex in the late 1950’s.  He was working full time when the business relocated to Old Saybrook as he also served with the Connecticut National Guard as a Recruiter.  He then earned a Coast Guard Master’s License and later his pilot’s license, instrument rated.  The company eventually purchased and renovated a local boatyard and café.  He managed it for 18 years as President until the property was taken to construct a new I-95 bridge.  He then completed his Bachelor’s Degree at the University of Connecticut.  Continuing to oversee client’s vessels, he also worked with a Marine Surveying business throughout New England, inspecting vessels for prepurchase and investigating insurance claims for many leading underwriters.

Elected in 1983, Grant served on the Board of Directors of the Connecticut Marine Trades Association, being voted in as Chairman and then President.  For the next 33 years he served on numerous state, regional, and national organizations affiliated with the recreational boating industry, many as Chairman.  In 1996 Grant was hired as CMTA’s full time Executive Director to motivate and move the trade association forward.  He served there for the next 18 years, managing staff, membership, organizing and producing the Annual Hartford Boat Show, and on many initiatives of legislation in Hartford.  During his tenure, the Association grew in membership and recognition as a leading marine trade association.  He now works part time for himself as a Marine Surveyor.

Active in Old Saybrook, he has operated the town Marine Patrol vessel for over 30 years, served on the Board of Finance and worked as a certified Election Moderator.  He was appointed by three Connecticut Governors as Old Saybrook’s Harbormaster, to the Long Island Sound LPG Terminal Task Force, and as a Commissioner on the Connecticut Maritime Commission.  He was appointed to the Connecticut Port Authority Board of Directors by Senate Republican President Pro Tempore Len Fasano.  Grant is licensed on land, sea and air.

Commissioner Katie Dykes
Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP)

Katie Scharf Dykes is the Commissioner of Connecticut’s Department of Energy & Environmental Protection (DEEP).  She was nominated by Governor Ned Lamont to serve as the Commissioner of DEEP, and was confirmed on February 20, 2019.  Katie previously served as Chair of the Connecticut Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) from 2015-2018, and as Deputy Commissioner for Energy at Connecticut DEEP from 2012-2015. Katie also served as the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, Inc. (RGGI) from 2014 to 2017.  RGGI is a multi-state effort focused on reducing carbon emissions from electric generating facilities.  Katie joined CT DEEP in March 2012 after prior service as Deputy General Counsel for the White House Council on Environmental Quality and as a Legal Advisor to the General Counsel for the U.S. Department of Energy.  She is a graduate of Yale College and the Yale Law School.

Commissioner Joseph Giulietti
Department of Transportation (CTDOT)

Joseph J. Giulietti is the Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Transportation. He was nominated by Governor Ned Lamont in January 2019 and confirmed by the Connecticut General Assembly a month later.

A 46-year veteran of the public transportation industry and a native of Connecticut, “Joe” Giulietti served as President of Metro-North Railroad from 2014 to 2017, and as Deputy Executive Director and then Executive Director of the South Florida Regional Transportation Authority (SFRTA) from 1998 to 2014. The authority serves Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties.

Giulietti began his career in 1971 with Penn Central Railroad as a brakeman and conductor while he was still in college. In 1978, he became a road foreman with Conrail (the successor agency to Penn Central) and joined the newly formed Metro-North in 1983 as superintendent of transportation, and later became engineer of track for the Harlem and Hudson lines.

After 14 years at SFRTA, Giulietti was tapped by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to serve as President of Metro-North and return it to a culture of safety, after a series of derailments and other mishaps. During his tenure at Metro-North, rail ridership reached an all-time record of 86.1 million, giving a significant boost to the economic health of the region the railroad serves. He retired from Metro-North in 2017 and then worked as an independent industry consultant.

Commissioner David Lehman
Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD)

David Lehman serves as the Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD), the state agency that oversees a wide range of programs promoting business growth, brownfield redevelopment, the arts, historic preservation and tourism.

David also serves as the Governor’s Senior Economic Advisor. He is hard at work at creating an innovative public-private partnership between DECD and AdvanceCT (formerly CERC) that will provide a new economic development delivery model for our state.

David’s business development priorities include helping build our urban centers into engines of growth, furthering the state’s innovation and entrepreneurial ecosystems, and strengthening the state’s workforce pipelines.

Prior to joining DECD, David worked in the financial services industry. Most recently he was Global Head of Real Estate Finance for the Investment Banking Division of Goldman Sachs, where he worked for 15 years.

Secretary Melissa McCaw
Secretary Office of Policy and Management (OPM)

Melissa McCaw was appointed by Governor Ned Lamont to serve as the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management, also known as the CT Budget Chief, effective January 9, 2019. OPM is the Governor’s staff agency in Connecticut and is responsible for policy, planning, budgeting and management of state government.

McCaw is a seasoned professional with eighteen years of budgeting, finance, operations and planning experience in government and higher education organizations. McCaw previously served as the Chief Financial Officer and the Director of Budget, Management & Grants for the City of Hartford for 3 years overseeing both the Budget and Finance functions, with a general fund budget of $570 million and an all funds budget in excess of $1 billion. McCaw led the City through 3 years of intensive restructuring including significant reductions and savings, restructure of department staffing and operations, benchmarking of key areas of expenditures, labor negotiations, revenue maximization, shift to a pay-as-you-go capital improvement program, renegotiation of leases and development of the city’s municipal recovery plan, establishing a new standard of fiscal responsibility.

Prior to this, McCaw was the Budget Director at the University of Hartford for nearly seven years. In this capacity, McCaw developed and managed the university budget, led the administration through years of financial challenges, implemented university wide agency reductions and/or restructures and also co-chaired Strategic Planning initiatives to strengthen the University’s financial and business model, maximize the use of assets and technology, and streamline operations.

McCaw began her career at OPM as a Budget Specialist within the Health and Human Service and General Government focus areas of the Budget and Financial Management division for nearly eight years.

McCaw holds a Bachelor of Arts in Government from Wesleyan University and a Master of Public Administration, with a concentration in Public Finance & Budgeting from the University of Connecticut. She was born in Norwalk, raised in Waterbury, and has lived in the State of Connecticut for her entire life.

State Treasurer Shawn T. Wooden
Office of the State Treasurer

Shawn Wooden was elected State Treasurer on November 6, 2018, following a successful 21-year career as an investment attorney specializing in public pension plans.  He was sworn-in as Connecticut’s 83rd State Treasurer on January 9, 2019.

Most recently, Treasurer Wooden was a Partner in a major law firm where he led its public pension plan investment practice and was a member of the Investment Section of the National Association of Public Pension Attorneys.

Early in his legal career, he worked in the AFL-CIO’s Office of Investment in Washington, D.C.

From 2011 to 2015, Treasurer Wooden served as President of the Hartford City Council.

He also was a member of the Connecticut Citizen’s Ethics Advisory Board, which interprets and enforces the state’s ethics laws and oversees the Connecticut Office of State Ethics.

Treasurer Wooden’s passion for public service began at home.

He was born and raised in the north end of Hartford as the youngest of six children.

From a young age, his parents taught him the importance of a good education, hard work and giving back to your community.

His father owned a television repair and record shop. His mother was a teachers’ aide in a program to prepare preschool-aged children for school, and later worked at the Community Renewal Team as part of their lead poison prevention and energy assistance programs for low-income families.

As a child, Treasurer Wooden participated in a de-segregation busing program and attended Manchester Public Schools, where he graduated high school with honors.

He went on to earn a four-year academic scholarship to Trinity College in Hartford, where he now serves as a member of its Board of Trustees.

Upon college graduation, Treasurer Wooden worked for the Mayor of Hartford and then as Connecticut Director of Project Vote, a national voter registration and education program. He also served as a key aide for the Connecticut Commissioner of Social Services.

He later attended New York University School of Law before beginning his career at Day Pitney.

Super Lawyers magazine designated him a Connecticut Super Lawyer for Securities and Corporate Finance, Business/Corporate.

Pensions and Investments named him one of the “Twenty-Five Investment Professionals to Watch.”

Savoy magazine named him as one of the most influential black lawyers in the country.

Treasurer Wooden is the proud father of two boys.

Mayor Michael Passero

City of New London

Tom Patton

John S. Johnson

Thames River Properties, LLC

John has spent his spent his lifetime on or near the sea.  A native of Mamaroneck, New York, John has lived in Connecticut for over 45 years.  A graduate of Tufts University with a B.A. in Economics, he started his professional life in the international banking world.  Johnson soon gravitated to his family’s marine hardware business and ultimately became a founding partner in Brewer Yacht Yards based out of Mamaroneck.  A born entrepreneur, John’s long list of companies has a common underlying theme: the coastal waters.  His most recent businesses include The Gallery at Firehouse Square, a maritime art gallery located in New London, Thames River Properties, the Allen Spool Mill Building in Mystic, and JBG Ventures in Stonington.  Former businesses include Newport Marine Products based in Guilford,  Sono Square based in Norwalk, CT,  Woodworker’s Store at South Norwalk, and Machine Works at Essex.

John’s civic responsibilities are also numerous.  He has sat on the Planning and Zoning Commissions of both Wilton and Old Lyme for 35years, served as Chair of OPSAIL CT, founding board member National Coast Guard Museum Association, Vice President Coast Guard Foundation, and past Vice Chair New London Port Authority.  He was also the founding Chairman of the CT Maritime Coalition.

John was appointed to the Connecticut Port Authority Board of Directors by Governor Dannel P. Malloy.

David Pohorylo

New England Shipping Company, Inc.

David E. Pohorylo, a Connecticut native born and raised in Windsor Locks, has resided with his family in Monroe, Connecticut since 1985.

Mr. Pohorylo began his career in the Maritime Industry in 1974, when he joined the Swedish Brostrom Group in New York City, as a staff accountant. Mr. Pohorylo worked with several of the group’s companies in New York and Gothenburg, Sweden, and in 1978 Mr. Pohorylo moved to the position of Manager, Finance & M.I.S. of Brostrom Shipping Company North America, the newly expanded branch office for the Swedish parent overseeing liner, bulker, tanker, trading and pool operations in the Americas. The relocation of Brostrom’s AB Atlanttrafik headquarters to the United States in 1983 allowed Mr. Pohorylo the opportunity to assume the position of Chief Corporate Controller & M.I.S. Director. Mr. Pohorylo later transitioned to the position of Chief Financial Officer.

Mr. Pohorylo returned to Connecticut in 1986 to assume the position of Vice President of Tagship Inc., a major steamship agency with 14 offices on the U.S.East Coast and Gulf, and managed their representation of a container/general cargo liner service.

In 1991 Mr. Pohorylo founded New England Shipping Company, Inc., a ship agency and management company, based in New Haven, Connecticut. New England Shipping originally focused on vessels calling Connecticut’s Ports but has expanded over the years into a full-service shipping company handling all types of vessels and cargo, from bulk carriers to reefer ships, tankers to container and passenger vessels, to highly specialized vessels such as fiber optic cable laying vessels and semi-submersibles in all ports of the northeast United States along with Maryland, Virginia, Georgia and Florida. New England Shipping Company, the only Connecticut based ship agency, continues to maintain their headquarters in Milford, Connecticut and also has satellite offices in New London, Albany, and Port Newark.

Mr. Pohorylo is the current Chairman of the Connecticut Maritime Coalition, a Connecticut Cluster Organization, which has been the voice of the maritime to the State of Connecticut since its inception in 1999. He also serves the State of Connecticut as the longest sitting State Pilot Commissioner.

Mr. Pohorylo was appointed to the Connecticut Port Authority Board of Directors by House Minority Leader, Representative Themis Klarides

Gregg Scully

Judi Sheiffele

Parker Wise

Presently in Private Practice

Parker was formerly in-house Counsel at American Cruise Lines in Guilford, CT. Before that assignment he was General Counsel at B+H Ocean Carriers Ltd.; and prior to that, General Counsel, Risk Manager and Corporate Secretary at Maritrans Inc.

Parker began his law practice at admiralty law firm Haight Gardner in New York, emphasizing ship financing and charter party disputes. He subsequently went in-house with Texaco in New York and then on to Conoco in Houston. Latter sent him to London for many years, where he had an oil & gas law practice involving exploration & production efforts throughout Europe/Africa. Upon returning to the United State, he became President of Scandinavian Marine, a hull insurance claims office then owned by the Norwegian hull clubs. Later, he returned to the practice of law with Trans Ocean Express, a refrigeration ship operator, followed by some years at Maritrans and B+H, and now ACL/PSC.

These positions have given him sound experience in, for example, ship financing, vessel documentation under many flags, insurance/risk management, claims, litigation management, contracts management, offshore incorporation, the negotiation and preparation of contracts having to do with the purchase/sale, chartering, construction and repair of vessels, international energy and marine-related business transactions of all kinds, and company secretarial/governance functions. He was also the company secretary of Conoco in the UK.

Parker was appointed to the Connecticut Port Authority Board of Directors by Governor Dannel P. Malloy.