More than 350 people honored Phillip C. Allen, Director of Port Everglades, at the 16th Annual South Florida Business Leader of the Year Award sold-out event hosted by Holland America Line to benefit the Seafarers’ House on Friday, November 4, 2011. Honorees are selected, in part, for their acknowledged leadership in their field, their entrepreneurial spirit and their long-term contributions to the success of the South Florida business community.
The Broward County Board of County Commissioners also designated November 4, 2011, as “PHIL ALLEN APPRECIATION DAY” in Broward County, FL in recognition of Allen’s outstanding contributions to the maritime industry and Broward County. Broward County Mayor Sue Gunzburger and Commissioners Ilene Lieberman and Barbara Sharief presented Allen with a Proclamation at the awards ceremony aboard Holland America Line’s ms Zuiderdam at Port Everglades.
“As the cruise industry has grown, the Port has expanded to accommodate more and larger cruise ships and more passengers, and it has been on Phil’s watch that much of the expansion of Port Everglades has been accomplished,” said Stein Kruse, President and CEO of Holland America Line, in a letter read by Matthew Sams, Vice President of Caribbean Relations, at the event.
The November 4th event marked a prolific past few years for Allen, Port Everglades Director since 2006. During Allen’s distinguished career at Port Everglades, the Port has achieved numerous milestones in cruise growth and containerized cargo development, landmark agreements with Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines and Carnival Corporation that are expected to result in up to 36 million cruise passengers sailing from Port Everglades over the next 10 years and support thousands of Broward County jobs.
Port Everglades is one of the world’s busiest cruise ports and a state leader in container cargo shipping. Allen presided over Port Everglades when it held a two-year reign as the No. 1 container cargo port in Florida in fiscal years 2007 and 2008. Under his direction, Port Everglades recently moved forward with several capital improvement projects that are part of the Port’s 20-year Master/Vision Plan.
Three critical expansion projects are projected to create 7,000 new jobs regionally and support 135,000 jobs statewide once they are constructed and become fully operational. These key expansion projects are expected to be completed over the next six years and will add five berths, widen and deepen the channel to 50 feet, and bring freight rail into the port.
Also under Allen’s leadership, the Broward County Board of County Commissioners adopted a 20-Year Master/Vision Plan for Port Everglades in 2007, and approved a two-year update in March 2011, which has been the catalyst for new development in the Port and has put people to work. Allen also oversaw the expansion of Cruise Terminal 18 into the world’s largest single-ship cruise terminal, a state-of-the-art terminal which was built under budget and on time for the arrival of the world’s largest cruise ship, Oasis of the Seas, and created 2,000 jobs at a time when the economy needed it most.
Other capital development projects under Allen’s leadership included the renovation of Cruise Terminal 29, the construction of a new 41-acre cargo terminal used by existing shipping lines to expand their operations, the construction of a new bridge to expedite cargo movement within the Port, the groundbreaking of the Eller Drive Overpass, and a number of other marine infrastructure improvements to facilitate the growing trend of the newer, larger generation of cruise and cargo ships.
Under Allen’s direction, Port Everglades launched its International Sister Seaports program and shortly thereafter signed on seaports interested in becoming part of Broward County's international family, including the Port of Olbia, located on the Italian island of Sardinia, the Port of Xiamen in China, the Port of Marseille, France, and the Port of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Port Everglades also signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) to encourage new business and trade between both organizations.
The Commissioning Ceremonies of the U.S. Navy’s U.S.S. BAINBRIDGE (DDG 96) and the recent U.S.S. JASON DUNHAM (DDG 109) took place at Port Everglades under Allen’s watch, the latter of which honored a Medal of Honor recipient who gave his life to save fellow Marines during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Through Allen’s leadership and guidance, Port Everglades has consistently been one of the top-rated seaports in the State of Florida, the country, and the world and has been the recipient of numerous awards and recognitions. Port Everglades received international recognition from one of the world's foremost cruise industry trade publications at Seatrade’s annual gathering in France as ‘’Cruise Port of the Year.” It has also earned the distinction of being awarded by Princess Cruises as “Port of the Year for 2010,” Porthole Cruise Magazine as “Best US Homeport’’ for 2008, 2009, and 2010, and several awards from DREAM World Cruise Destination.
Allen himself has been recognized as South Florida Business Journal’s 2010 Ultimate CEO Award and under his leadership, the Port won the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce’s Business Leadership Award for Joint Ventures 2009. He currently serves as Chair of the Florida Ports Council, which is the professional association for Florida’s 14 deepwater seaports, and is a past chair of the Florida Seaport Transportation and Economic Development (FSTED) Council. He is a member of the Board of Directors for the Greater Fort Lauderdale Chamber of Commerce and is a member of the American Association of Port Authorities. He has also been an elected board member of the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada.
Phil Allen moved to Broward County, Florida in 1986 from Cleveland, Ohio, where he served as Finance and Budget Director for the City of Cleveland between 1980 and 1986. He served as Broward County ’s Chief Financial Officer for nearly 20 years managing the Department of Finance and Administrative Services before stepping into his role at Port Everglades.