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Charles E. Klug is the Principal Counsel for Port Tampa Bay; Florida’s largest and most cargo-diverse seaport. Mr. Klug is currently responsible for advising the Board of Commissioners and the President & CEO and as well as overseeing the Port Strategic and Master Plan. In past, he has served as Chief Legal Officer and General Counsel for Port Tampa Bay since 2004 and served as Deputy Port Director for Administration, from 2008 to 2013.
In addition, he recently served as Interim Port Director from September through December of 2012 during Port Tampa Bay’s search for a new Port Director and CEO. Prior to joining Port Tampa Bay, Mr. Klug was a partner with the law firm of Gray Robinson, P.A., where he concentrated his practice in the areas of commercial real estate, local government, land use and environmental law. Mr. Klug received a B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Florida, College of Business in 1983 (with Honors) and a J.D. from the University of Florida, College of Law in 1986. He was admitted to the Florida Bar in 1986 and has been certified by the Florida Bar as specialist in Real Estate Law since 1993 and as a specialist in City, County and Local Government Law since 1998. He is an "AV" rated lawyer by Martindale-Hubbell and currently serves on the Florida Bar's Real Estate Certification Committee. Mr Klug was recognized as the "Top Corporate Counsel for Government and Non-profits" by the Tampa Bay Business Journal in 2014 based on leadership, ethical standards and exemplary professional skills.
Kenneth Washington began his employment with the Port in October 1996 and was promoted to his current position, Chief Information Officer at Port Tampa Bay, in 1999. In this capacity, Mr. Washington oversees and is responsible for the development, execution and evaluation of all voice/data network topologies, telecommunications, security technological framework and application developments required to support the Port’s Information Technology infrastructure.
Mr. Washington obtained his professional certifications as Master Certified Novell Engineer, Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer, and Microsoft Certified Professional. He received his formal education from Hillsborough Community College, Harold Washington College and the University of South Florida.
Bruce Laurion was appointed to the position of Director of Engineering at Port Tampa Bay in 1998 and was promoted to Sr. Director of Engineering and Facilities Management in 2005 and then Vice President Engineering in 2013. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Iowa. In his position Laurion is in charge of engineering activities that include managing the 17 person Engineering Department, outside engineering consultants and contractors that are involved in the Port’s $60 million annual capital program. He is also responsible for the 20 person Facilities Management Department that performs maintenance and repair of Port facilities.
As Vice President of Legal Affairs, Donna Wysong oversees all legal matters on behalf of Port Tampa Bay and manages the Legal Department. She joined Port Tampa Bay in 2012 as Assistant Port Counsel and was promoted to Vice President of Legal Affairs in August of 2013. She is a board member of the International Association of Maritime and Port Executives, and received her Accredited Marine Port Executive (AMPE) certification in 2016.
Ms. Wysong received her Bachelor of Arts degree in political science (Summa Cum Laude) from the University of South Florida in 1993 and her Juris Doctor degree (Magna Cum Laude) from Stetson University College of Law in 1996. After graduation from law school, she served a two-year federal judicial clerkship in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida and practiced law at the Shackleford, Farrior, Stallings & Evans law firm and the Annis, Mitchell, Cockey, Edwards & Roehn law firm in Tampa. Ms. Wysong also worked as an Assistant County Attorney for the Hillsborough County Attorney’s Office and became Board Certified in City, County & Local Government Law in 2004. She subsequently joined the City of Tampa Attorney’s Office as an Assistant City Attorney, where she worked for several years prior to joining Port Tampa Bay. She has experience in the fields of real estate and land use law, as well as all areas pertaining to public entities including public records, Sunshine Law, procurement, public contracts, and quasi-judicial procedures. She has been a member of the Florida Bar since 1996 and is admitted to practice in the United States District Courts for the Northern, Middle, and Southern Districts of Florida. Ms. Wysong is a Florida Supreme Court certified circuit and county court mediator. She is also a member of the Hillsborough County Bar Association, Ferguson-White Inn of Court, Association of Corporate Counsel, Tampa Tiger Bay Club, Hillsborough County League of Women Voters, Tampa Propeller Club, and a graduate of Leadership Tampa Bay’s Class of 2017.
Wade Barnes joined the Port Tampa Bay Team in 2015 and serves as the Director of Information Technology. In this capacity, Mr. Barnes is responsible for executing Port Tampa Bay’s and the CIO’s vision, helping to align the Port’s business and IT strategies, and directing day-to-day IT operations.
Mr. Barnes has his Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Network Administration and earned his Masters of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Tampa. His current professional certifications include the Project Management Professional (PMP), Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP), and CompTIA Security +.
Mr. Barnes has a combined 14 years of Military, Government, and private sector leadership experience. He is an active member of the American Association of Port Authorities’ (AAPA) IT and Cybersecurity Committees.
Katie Mahoney is the Creative Director of Communications, Marketing and Branding at Port Tampa Bay. She is responsible for strategic messaging, advertising, and the execution of all creative internal and external content for the Port. She serves as an integral support to marketing and business development, engaging companies on both the national and international stage.
As a creative director with more than nearly two decades of experience working on national accounts, Katie has promoted some of the world's most recognizable brands. She mastered messaging for TV, web, and digital content for both large and small advertising agencies. She's managed teams of designers, writers and developers for companies including Verizon Wireless, AT&T, and Delta Airlines.
Katie has mastered the art of understanding of customers want - from their first impulse of desire to purchasing a product.
Katie received an undergraduate degree in advertising and communications from Michigan State University. She also graduated from Portfolio Center in Atlanta with a speciality in art direction.
Samara Sodos is the Director of Public Relations for Port Tampa Bay, handling all media inquiries and proactively showcasing the Port’s crucial role in our community, state, and country. Sam has experience in both the private and public sectors of the public relations arena, managing corporate relations for AT&T and serving as the spokesperson for the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office. Previously, Sam was an award-winning TV news reporter, spending more than a decade at the NBC affiliate in Tampa. During her time at WFLA-TV, she wrote for the Tampa Tribune and its online partner: covering two wars, countless hurricanes, high profile murder cases and dozens of national and statewide political campaigns. Sam also worked for NBC News as a reporter and producer, covering the Ferguson riots and several renowned criminal cases. She previously worked as a reporter for the NBC affiliate in Roanoke, and was an anchor and reporter at WTMJ-TV in her hometown of Milwaukee. Sam won dozens of awards for her reporting, from regional Emmy awards to the National Edward R. Murrow award. Sam graduated with a degree in Journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Jamal Sowell is Port Tampa Bay’s Director of Special Projects, directly advising President and CEO Paul Anderson and the executive team with management oversight. In his capacity he serves as a liaison for the Port on business, government and real estate matters. Jamal works closely with local, state and federal leaders to represent Port Tampa Bay.
He served as a Captain in the United States Marine Corps, including combat operations in Afghanistan. Jamal enlisted as a Private First Class in the Marine Corps Reserve eventually serving on active duty as an officer. As an officer, he was a battalion assistant operations officer (S-3A), company executive officer, tank detachment officer in charge, platoon commander, anti-terrorism force protection officer, electronic warfare officer, and a martial arts instructor.
For several years, Jamal worked as Special Assistant to the President of the University of Florida (UF) and Assistant Corporate Secretary to the UF Board of Trustees. He supported the UF president in overseeing a $4.6 billion budget and gave strategic advice to the president and the board of trustees. In this role, he directed university initiatives pertaining to elected officials, faculty, staff, students, and economic development. During this time, he assisted the president with the addition of Texas A&M and the University of Missouri to the Southeastern Athletic Conference.
Jamal received his bachelors from UF while serving as the UF Student Body President, University Trustee, member of Florida Blue Key, and was selected for the UF Hall of Fame. He also obtained a master’s degree in higher education from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, while working at Amherst College. He graduated with a doctor of jurisprudence as a Pat Tillman scholar from Indiana University Bloomington Maurer School of Law, while working for United States Senator Todd Young (then-congressman). In law school, Jamal was an editor for the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy Symposium, worked in Israel for Shurat HaDin, and served as a state board appointee of Indiana Governor Mike Pence. Jamal is a 6th generation Floridian and proud monthly donor to his parents’ alma mater, Florida A&M University.