The Port is governed by a seven member Board of Port Commissioners; one commissioner is appointed by each of the city councils of Chula Vista, Coronado, Imperial Beach and National City, and three commissioners are appointed by the San Diego City Council. The Board establishes policies under which the Port's staff— supervised by the President and Chief Executive Officer— conducts its daily operations.
Marshall Merrifield — Chairman
Marshall Merrifield was sworn in to the Board of Port Commissioners on April 15, 2013, to represent the City of San Diego. Merrifield serves as President/CEO and majority shareholder for Bluewave Security, which manufactures high-tech equipment for video and door-access surveillance. He previously was President/CEO and majority shareholder for the security company General Lock and Clark Security Products, the largest privately held security hardware business in the United States, until 2010. His past business affiliations have involved industries ranging from animation to investment banking. Merrifield cofounded Pacific Ridge School in Carlsbad and has been a Board Member for the Magdalena Ecke Family YMCA in Encinitas and for former San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders' Economic Advisory Council. He serves as a member of the Campaign to End Homelessness' leadership team. Merrifield graduated from Princeton University with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics.
Robert “Dukie” Valderrama — Vice-Chairman
Robert “Dukie” Valderrama was sworn in to represent the City of National City in January 2005. He is retired from the construction industry. He was the owner of A-D&D Drywall, Inc. and West Coast Scaffolding, Inc. Commissioner Valderrama has served on numerous public and private boards including the San Diego County Water Board, San Diego Bowl Game Association, Southwestern College Foundation Board, South County Economic Development Committee, Artisans Insurance Ltd. and Chairman of the Risk Control Committee, California Professional Association of Specialty Contractors, Chairman of the California Construction Council, Chairman of the ABC San Diego Drywall Residential Insurance Council and Chairman of the National City Chamber of Commerce.
Rafael Castellanos — Secretary
Rafael Castellanos was sworn in to the Board of Port Commissioners on April 15, 2013, to represent the City of San Diego. Castellanos is a partner with the law firm Solomon Minton Cardinal Doyal & Smith LLP in San Diego, where he specializes in commercial real estate and business transactional law. His professional affiliations include having served as General Counsel to, and a member of, the Board of Directors of MANA de San Diego. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the San Diego La Raza Lawyers Association, currently as its President. Castellanos is a member of the California State Bar Association, the San Diego County Bar Association, and the Mexican American Business and Professional Association. He was named one of the San Diego Daily Transcript's Top Young Attorneys in 2008, and in 2011 was named one of San Diego Metro Magazine's 20 Men Who Impact San Diego. Castellanos graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree and he earned a Juris Doctorate from the University of Chicago Law School as a Cornerstone Scholar.
Bob Nelson was sworn in to represent the City of San Diego in January 2011. His 40 years of government and political service includes participation as President Clinton's representative on the U.S. Competitiveness Policy Council, and serving as chair of the San Diego Convention Center Corporation, the San Diego LGBT Community Center, and City of San Diego Revenue Review and Economic Competitiveness Commission. He has also served on the City of San Diego Public Utilities Advisory Commission and in various advisory capacities to the Mayor of San Diego and the San Diego County District Attorney. He serves on the Port's Environmental Advisory Committee and represents the Port as an Advisory Member of the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) Board of Directors. He also serves on the Board of Directors of CleanTECH San Diego and Middle Class Taxpayers Association. Prior to public service, Nelson built one of America's largest independent public relations agencies, now part of Porter-Novelli Group. His clients have included American Water, Anheuser-Busch Companies, the Association of American Railroads, California Teachers Association, The Irvine Company, San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council, and International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.
Ann Moore was sworn in to the Board of Port Commissioners on Jan. 13, 2011, to represent the City of Chula Vista. She is a senior partner in the law firm of Norton Moore & Adams. Before joining the firm, Moore served as Chula Vista's City Attorney. She has practiced law for more than 20 years and has extensive experience in land use, real estate, redevelopment, environmental, and municipal law. She represents both developers and governmental agencies in processing land use entitlements for large scale residential, commercial, and industrial projects. Her areas of expertise include the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), Subdivision Map Act, eminent domain, inverse condemnation, Endangered Species Act, public infrastructure financing, the Brown Act, and Conflict of Interest laws. Moore graduated from San Diego State University with a Public Administration degree and she earned her law degree at the University of San Diego law school.
Dan Malcolm was sworn in to the Board of Port Commissioners on January 5, 2011 to represent the City of Imperial Beach. President and CEO of Malcolm Properties, he has extensive experience in the field of commercial real estate brokerage, investment, finance and commercial property development. He also maintains a separate law practice specializing in commercial real estate contract, transactional, entitlement and land use law. Commissioner Malcolm has previously served on numerous public and private boards including the Imperial Beach City Council, San Diego Metropolitan Transit Development Board, San Diego County Commercial Association of Realtors, South County Economic Development Council, San Diego Association of Governments and as Chairman of Sweetwater High School District Bond Oversight Committee. He has also served as Chairman of Sharp Coronado Hospital, as a Director on the master board of Sharp Healthcare and continues to serve on the Coronado Hospital Foundation Board. Commissioner Malcolm holds an undergraduate degree in real estate finance from San Diego State University and was awarded a Juris Doctorate of Law from Thomas Jefferson School of Law.
Garry J. Bonelli
Garry J. Bonelli was sworn in to the Board of Port Commissioners on January 3, 2014, to represent the City of Coronado. A retired Navy SEAL and Rear Admiral, Bonelli culminated 45 years of active and reserve service in 2013 at the U.S. Naval Special Warfare Command headquartered in Coronado. From his command, he provided the vision and leadership for a 9,000-person worldwide maritime special operations force and directed a $1 billion enterprise. Bonelli’s concurrent civilian professional career spanned corporate, military and public policy development. He has served the region as an executive staff member of the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG), and as vice president of communications and vice president of military affairs for the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce. Bonelli helped create both the 1987 and 2004 communications programs that garnered voter approval and a subsequent extension of TransNet, a $14 billion countywide sales tax for transportation. Bonelli holds a master of science degree in mass communications from San Diego State University.