OLD SAYBROOK, Conn. (March 15, 2022) – Today, Connecticut Port Authority (CPA) executive director John Henshaw announced that he has submitted his letter of resignation to the Authority’s board of directors. Henshaw has offered to stay on in his position in order to provide assistance with a transition. His last day with the Connecticut Port Authority will be April 21.
“Having seen the State Pier Infrastructure Improvements Project receive all of its required permits and the New Haven Navigation Improvement Project receive its full funding, including the State’s matching funding, I have decided to return to Maine to pursue other opportunities. It has been a great honor to work on these important maritime projects on behalf of the people of Connecticut,” Henshaw said. “I very much appreciate the support of the port authority’s Board and the Lamont Administration in achieving these important milestones,” he added.
“John has done a remarkable job leading the Authority and advancing mission-critical objectives in key projects statewide,” said board chair David Kooris. “After discussing John’s decision to resign with the Human Resources Committee last Tuesday and notifying the full board in the days following, in the interest of transparency we wanted to make this information public as soon as possible,” said Mr. Kooris. Governor Ned Lamont recently reappointed Mr. Kooris to serve a four-year board term and his confirmation hearing before the Executive and Legislative Nominations Committee took place on March 10, 2022.
The Authority plans to hold a special meeting of its board of directors on Tuesday March 22, 2022 at 12:00pm, to publicly discuss Henshaw’s resignation and to address next steps in identifying interim leadership and the search for a new executive director.
“The Connecticut Port Authority is in a different place than a few years ago, and it’s something in which our entire state should take pride,” said Governor Ned Lamont. “The CPA in recent years has helped to reshape the conversation surrounding what a state pier could be and has helped to unleash its potential as it will be at the center of our efforts to produce offshore wind energy. I am thankful for the leadership John Henshaw provided to help move the CPA in this direction, and we will miss his contributions. I am confident in the Board and its leadership and my team will continue to provide the Authority with the necessary senior-level support to ensure that there are no disruptions to day-to-day operations nor to the State Pier Infrastructure Improvements Project in New London.”
In August of 2019 Governor Lamont directed the Office of Policy and Management (OPM) to oversee the Authority’s finances and procurement activities. Since then, the Authority has substantially transformed its policies and procedures through its amended Memorandum of Understanding with OPM, which was first executed in September of 2019.“OPM has worked alongside the Port Authority Board since late 2019 to reform its policies and procedures to ensure that the proper framework is in place to govern its important activities; an important foundation for the public’s future confidence in the Authority,” said Acting OPM Secretary Jeffrey Beckham. “OPM continues to consult with the staff of the authority on their financial management and controls and will be assisting the Authority in on-boarding a new executive director and finance director.”
Since late-2019, the Authority has been supported in managing the State Pier infrastructure improvement project in New London through its Memorandum of Agreement with the Department of Administrative Services (DAS) and OPM.
“We wish John well in his next endeavor, and are grateful for his service,” said Acting DAS Commissioner Michelle H. Gilman. “In conjunction with OPM, we will continue to provide quality construction and technical support to the State Pier project.”
The Authority continues to advance maritime projects statewide. In addition to the navigation improvement project in New Haven, the Authority continues to work with the US Army Corps of Engineers to advance the channel maintenance dredge in Bridgeport, an important pre-requisite to the future development of that underutilized harbor. A Dredge Material Management Plan for the Bridgeport project is scheduled to be completed in 2023. The Authority plans to advance another round of Small Harbor Improvement Projects Program funding in 2022, with funding authorized by the legislature last year.
An agenda and other meeting information for the March 22, 2022 12:00pm special meeting of the Authority’s board of directors will be made accessible in advance of the meeting at www.ctportauthority.com/governance