Houston International Maritime Conference

Join us for the exciting inaugural year of the Houston International Maritime Conference hosted by Port Houston.

Enjoy networking and informational sessions on topics like import and export container trade, high wide and heavy cargo, sustainability, warehousing/distribution, Foreign Trade Zone, and workforce development. Attend alongside decision makers from BCOs, ocean carriers, NVOCCs, freight forwarders, trucking companies and more, and learn about current trends and the future of the maritime industry.

HIMC Agenda

*All times in Central Standard Time. All sessions will be hosted at the Four Seasons Hotel Houston, except for the closing reception. Registration includes access to all sessions and closing reception.

7:00 AM – Registration opens

7:15 AM – Breakfast

8:00 AM – Opening remarks by Roger Guenther, Executive Director, Port Houston

8:15 AM – Session 1State of the Economy

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Speaker – Patrick Jankowski, Senior Vice President of Research, Greater Houston Partnership

Description: Global, national, and regional economic outlook. Hear from one of our region’s experts, whose analysis has appeared in Forbes, CNN Money, The Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Post.

9:00 AM – Session 2Navigating our Port Future (Panel Discussion)

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Moderator & Panelist – Lori Brownell, Director of Channel Improvement, Port Houston

Panelist – Jeff Davis, Chief Port Operations Officer, Port Houston

Panelist – Rich Byrnes, Chief Infrastructure Officer, Port Houston

Description: Hear how we are using a multi-disciplinary approach at Port Houston for operational excellence via upland and maritime advancement. Panelist Jeff Davis will talk about minimizing supply chain issues through strategic growth and innovation. Panelist Rich Byrnes will talk about resilience through diversification and sustainable infrastructure. Moderator and Panelist will talk about advancing the marine highway.

9:45 AM – Networking Break

10:00 AM – Session 3Ask the experts: Changing the Outlook of the Import Market (Panel Discussion)

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Moderator – Dominic Sun, Director of Trade Development, Port Houston

Panelist – Jonathan Gold, Vice President of Supply Chain and Customs Policy, National Retail Federation

Panelist – DeAnn Kiker, Senior Vice President Global Logistics, Ross Dress for Less

Panelist – Bob Keller, Vice President Global Logistics, Five Below

Panelist – Sarah Galica, Vice President of Transportation, Home Depot

Description – Open and transparent discussions with leaders from various segments of the import supply chain.  In conversation they will offer a broad perspective on shifting demand and sourcing, along with insights on dealing with the potential of future supply chain disruptions.

10:45 AM – Session 4Keeping America Competitive: Container export flow in Houston (Panel Discussion)

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Moderator – Ty Reasonover, Trade Development Manager, Port Houston

Panelist – Giancarlo Morgera, Executive Vice President Liner Services, MSC

Panelist – Michael Symonanis, Director of North American Logistics/Global Container Logistics, Louis Dreyfus Commodities

Description – What are best practices for shippers and ocean carriers to expedite the flow of exports to global markets? What has the Houston region done well with, and what can be improved? Hear about this and more.

11:30 AM – Networking Break

12:00 PM – Lunch

1:00 PM – Session 5Project Cargo – Adapting to the Winds of Change (Panel Discussion)

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Moderator – Ricardo Arias, Trade Development Manager, Port Houston

Panelist – Ben Holland, Senior Director of Supply Chain and Logistics – North America, VESTAS

Panelist – Lisa Haley, Director, Supply Chain and Logistics, NACERO

Panelist – Ralp Stierli, Vice President Sales and Operations, Solaris Global

Panelist – Michael Moreland, General Manager Americas, AAL

Description – How terminals must get ready for changing cargoes including a potential increase in  sustainability project cargo.

1:45 PM – Session 6The Houston Real Estate Advantage (Panel Discussion)

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Moderator – Shane Williams, Director of Economic Development, Port Houston

Panelist – Justin Robinson, Managing Director and Partner, Stream

Panelist – Christen Vestal, Partner, Vigavi Realty

Description – A discussion on what is driving the more than two-year boom on Houston Industrial Real Estate. What factors and incentives are driving this peak, and will it slow down?

2:30 PM – Networking Break

2:45 PM – Session 7 – Sustainability and Energy Transition (Panel Discussion)

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Moderator – Trae Camble, Director of Environmental Affairs, Port Houston

Panelist – Lee Kindberg, Head of Environment & Sustainability, North America, Maersk

3:30 PM – Session 8 – The Workforce of the Future (Panel Discussion)

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Moderator – Maria Aguirre, Director of Community Relations, Port Houston

Panelist – Shareen Lamond, President, WGMA

Other Panelists – TBA

Description – A conversation with leaders in the maritime workforce and academic development fields about current workforce needs, predictions of future needs, and what is being done to ensure we are developing the workforce of the future.

4:15 PM – Closing remarks by Roger Guenther, Executive Director, Port Houston

4:30 PM – Adjourn

5:00 PM – Closing reception at Greater Houston Partnership 701 Avenida de las Americas, Suite 900 Houston, TX 77010 (Included in admission)

Learn About Port Houston and the Houston Ship Channel

Join the Conversation #HIMC2022


HIMC 2022 will be hosted at the Four Season Hotel in Downtown Houston. There are no discounted rooms available at the Four Seasons, but there are hotels available within walking distance. Below is a list of recommended hotels:

  • Hilton Americas – Houston (0.2 miles away)
  • Le Méridien – Houston Downtown (0.2 miles away)
  • Marriott Marquis – Houston (0.3 miles away)
  • Courtyard by Marriott – Houston Downtown (0.3 miles away)
  • Hampton Inn – Houston Downtown (0.3 miles away)
  • The Westin – Houston Downtown (0.4 miles away)
  • JW Marriott – Houston Downtown (0.4 miles away)
  • Hyatt Regency – Houston (0.5 miles away)


Things to Do in Houston

While attending HIMC 2022, take advantage of exploring the great city of Houston. Whether you’re looking for a solo outing, a night out with the team or you’ve brought the family for an extended stay, H-Town has something for everyone. From outdoor recreations and sporting events to exciting nightlife and delicious dining spots, there’s plenty to do. Below is a list of recommendations:


  • Bayou & Bottle
  • The Rustic – Downtown
  • Hearsay on the Green
  • Pappasito’s Cantina
  • McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood & Steaks
  • Pappas Bros. Steakhouse
  • Saltgrass Steakhouse



  • MKT Bar
  • The Rustic – Downtown
  • Reserve 101
  • Z ON 23 Rooftop Bar
  • Pitch 25 Beer Garden
  • Pete’s Dueling Piano Bar
  • Biggio’s Sports Bar


Family Fun

  • Minute Maid Park – Houston Astros
  • PNC Stadium – Houston Dynamo and Houston Dash
  • Toyota Center – Houston Rockets
  • Downtown Aquarium – Houston
  • Bayou Music Center
  • House of Blues – Houston
  • Wortham Theatre Center
  • Miller Outdoor Theatre
  • Discover Green Park
  • Sam Houston Park
  • Museum of Fine Arts – Houston
  • Houston Museum of Natural Science
  • Children’s Museum – Houston
  • Houston Zoo