Saint John Port Authority employee Betty MacMillan was honored by her peers today for decades of work in the cruise industry. The awards are part of the annual American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) Cruise Seminar which is taking place in Miami over the next three days.

"We congratulate Betty for receiving this award from her peers, Betty is a valuable member of our team and has been with the Saint John Port Authority for over 26 years. In that time, she has been a consistent "cruise champion" both for and in Saint John, New Brunswick and a very visible cruise industry advocate for all of Atlantic Canada," noted Jim Quinn, Saint John Port Authority President & CEO.

Long ago Betty realized that in order for Saint John to benefit from cruise, it had to be part of a regional approach which led to her being a forming board member of the Atlantic Canada Cruise Association. An association she has chaired on 3 separate occasions.

In her time with the Port Authority she has witnessed the local cruise business grow from a cottage industry, with a few thousand passengers a year in the early days, to become the fastest growing market in the tourism industry in New Brunswick today. As a point in fact, last year the Port of Saint John exceeded 200,000 passengers in a single year and welcomed its 1.5 millionth cumulative cruise guest with the 2 millionth predicted to likely occur in the next 2 years.

Never one to rest upon her laurels, upon receiving the award Betty commented "I am honoured to be recognized by my peers and it has certainly been rewarding to be involved in such a dynamic industry. Saint John and the region have so much potential and we still have work to do."

The AAPA Cruise Award is made annually in recognition of an individual or individuals whose outstanding work or service has had a positive impact on the relationship between the cruise port and the cruise industry in the Western Hemisphere.