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Massport announces CEO finalists for $300G top job

PortandTerminal.com, June 21, 2019

Finalist candidates for the Massport CEO’s position are Boston Planning & Development Agency director Brian Golden and Massport’s Port Director Lisa Weiland.

Massport’s search for a new CEO emerged from secrecy with the search committee bringing two local candidates forward for a vote next week. Both are familiar faces.

The CEO oversees a staff of about 1,300 and an annual budget of more than $800 million. Compensation for the position is pegged at $300 thousand a year.

The board’s screening committee picked two Boston insiders as finalists in the contest to run the Massachusetts Port Authority: Lisa Wieland, the authority’s port director, and Brian Golden, head of the Boston Planning & Development Agency (BPDA).

Of the two finalists, the Boston Globe says that Brian Golden is more visible around the city than is Ms Weiland. As the BPDA’s director, he is a regular presence at Boston’s near-constant stream of groundbreakings and ribbon-cuttings. Golden manages a 240-person agency that has ushered in 50 million square feet of development in the past five years and has worked to carry out Mayor Martin J. Walsh’s vision for the city.

He faces stiff competition though from Lisa Weiland. Wieland is held in high regard for the success that Massport’s cargo and cruise ship operations have enjoyed in recent years. The Conley freight terminal and the Flynn Cruiseport set records last year for volume and passengers, respectively.

The contest remains tough to handicap.

Boston Globe

Wieland worked as a Bain & Co. consultant before joining Massport 13 years ago and has earned the respect of peers in other cities during her four-year tenure as port director. She didn’t initially apply for the CEO job but was encouraged to do so by the headhunters during the search process.

Neither of them has experience running an airport, the primary source of Massport’s revenue.

The port authority’s board, in its news release, took pains to say that a big net was cast in its search. The search firm Isaacson Miller screened and interviewed 41 candidates in February and March. The board’s screening committee then interviewed 10 candidates, including five women and three people of color, before whittling down the list.

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