Executive Director

Deb DeLuca

Executive Director

Deborah DeLuca was appointed Executive Director of the Port Authority, effective August 16, 2018, becoming the first woman to take the helm of the organization in its 60-plus-year history. As Government and Environmental Affairs Director for the previous four years, she tracked regulatory issues and legislation for DSPA, the Port of Duluth-Superior and the Great Lakes-Seaway System. She represents the Port's interests to policymakers at local, state and federal levels of government and to environmental, economic development and community development organizations. DeLuca currently is president of the Minnesota Ports Association, chairs the Harbor Technical Advisory Committee for the Duluth-Superior Metropolitan Interstate Council, serves on the Executive Committee of the Duluth Area Chamber of Commerce and the Board of the Iron Mining Association, and represents DSPA on the Mayor's Economic Development Coalition. Most recently, she spearheaded a comprehensive study through the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC) to analyze and benchmark Duluth's industrial economy, focusing on its potential to drive diversified economic growth. 

In directing brownfield assessment and cleanup efforts to support the Port Authority's industrial development program, DeLuca was responsible for procuring a portfolio of grant funds matched to Port Authority needs. A noted expert on redevelopment projects and environmental policy, she was a founding board member of Minnesota Brownfields. As owner and principal of DeLuca Strategies for 14 years, she provided consulting services to public, private and non-profit sector clients in the arenas of grant-writing, implementation of funding strategies, project management, government relations and public outreach. She began her career at the Minnesota Department of Agriculture after which she worked with the MPCA, becoming supervisor of its Voluntary Investigation and Cleanup (VIC) Program in 1996. A graduate of UW-Madison, DeLuca earned a B.S. degree in molecular biology and a master's in land resources from the UW Institute for Environmental Studies. She is an outdoors enthusiast and former U.S. National cycling team member. In early 2018, she was one of just 36 civilians selected to participate in the Joint Civilian Orientation Conference, a public liaison program of the U.S. Department of Defense. 

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