The tenure of Jerry A. Bridges as executive director of the Virginia Port Authority will end Oct. 31, the VPA Board of Commissioners announced late Thursday.
Bridges, who succeeded Robert Bray as the VPA chief when he retired in 2007, helped guide the VPA through a difficult period that came as the result of the worldwide economic slowdown, the VPA said in the announcement.
During his tenure Bridges restructured the agency, helped oversee the VPA’s long-term lease of APM Terminals and became chairman of the board of the American Association of Port Authorities.
Bridges’ decision to leave was a “mutual one,” VPA Board Chairman Michael Quillen told the Daily Press. He said the two had been discussing a possible departure for several weeks.
Quillen said Bridges will continue to help guide the port through the next two months. The VPA board is finalizing its plan for an interim executive director and will make an announcement on that plan soon.
Bridges is leaving the VPA at a time when the board is considering offers from three private investment groups, including APM Terminals and the Carlyle Group, to take over the leases of the terminals operated by the VPA.
“In so many different ways Jerry has done a lot of good for this port and for that we all thank him,” Quillen said.
“This board will work closely with the VPA’s deputies to ensure continuity within the organization,” Quillen said. “The port has had a very solid performance since the beginning of the year and that will continue to be the focus: to build volumes and market The Port of Virginia as the East Coast’s premiere facility.”