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General Press Releases

Port of San Diego Highlights Diversity Efforts, Releases Annual Equal Opportunity Program Report

The Port of San Diego is committed to a 21st Century Port culture of diversity and inclusion, and a new report describes the most recent year of results from the Port’s Equal Opportunity Program.

The Board of Port Commissioners was presented with the Equal Opportunity Program Annual Report at a regular meeting on October 9, 2018. The report provides an overview of activities and statistical data during the 2017-2018 fiscal year under contracting, diversity and inclusion, and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).  The data is collected and analyzed in order to identify opportunities to attract a diversity of businesses and job applicants; to foster and retain an engaged and committed workforce; and to provide access for all. Fiscal Year 17/18 marks the 28th year of the Equal Opportunity Program at the Port, to enhance diversity efforts that existed prior to the inception of the formalized program.

“The Port of San Diego is a great example of how our region’s rich diversity is among our greatest strengths,” said Port Chairman Rafael Castellanos. “We are always working to be more inclusive, and we encourage our diverse community to apply for jobs and participate in contracting opportunities with the Port.”

The Port’s vision is to be a 21st Century Port which is defined as “an innovative, global seaport courageously supporting commerce, community and the environment.”

We embrace the power of diversity to help us achieve our strategic goals. In hiring and in contracting, we want to select people and businesses who are talented, with diverse backgrounds and experiences that can contribute positively to our culture,” said Port CEO Randa Coniglio. “That’s exactly why one of my priorities is building a company-wide culture of leadership, focused on putting others first and embracing diversity and inclusion.”

As part of becoming a 21st Century Port, the Port’s leadership team has implemented “others-focused leadership,” which is defined as serving the needs of other people. The Equal Opportunity Program is one example of how the Port demonstrates its commitment to diversity and inclusion. Diversity and inclusion principles are codified in Board Policies 359 (Equal Opportunity Contracting), 361 (Equal Opportunity and Nondiscrimination) and 362 (Americans with Disabilities Act); and are embedded in programs including the Port’s Accessibility Advisory Committee, its annual Summer Student Worker Program, the Tidelands Activation Program sponsorships, and the newly formed Diversity and Inclusion Committee.    

Highlights of the Equal Opportunity Program Report for Fiscal Year 17/18:

  • The Board of Port Commissioners awarded $54.2 million in contracts for public works and services. Of that, $21.3 million (39.4 percent) went to small businesses, which exceeds the State of California’s goal of 25 percent; and $15.6 million (28.8 percent) went to minority/women/veteran-owned businesses, exceeding statewide goals of 23 percent. 
  • The Port workforce is diverse, with 37.8 percent women, 43.6 percent minority and 13 percent veteran employees.
  • The Port participated in 93 outreach events specifically to support diversity in contracting, employment and the Americans with Disabilities Act.
  • The Port’s Accessibility Advisory Committee reviewed nine projects and provided feedback to maximize access through Universal Design principles.
  • The Port gained Elite Member status in the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce's Honor Roll program as an employer who hires and supports veterans.
  • The Port was named Public Agency of the Year as a Community Partner for Inclusion and Participation in Equal Opportunity from the Black Contractors Association of San Diego.
  • The Port developed and distributed a Gender Transition Policy for employees and implemented gender-neutral restrooms.
  • The Port implemented a committee to enact a Diversity & Inclusion Strategic Plan.

For more information about the Equal Opportunity Program, please contact Program Manager Shirley Hirai at


About THE Port of San Diego

The Port of San Diego serves the people of California as a specially created district, balancing multiple uses on 34 miles along San Diego Bay spanning five cities. Collecting no tax dollars, the Port manages a diverse portfolio to generate revenues that support vital public services and amenities.

The Port champions Maritime, Waterfront Development, Public Safety, Experiences and Environment, all focused on enriching the relationship people and businesses have with our dynamic waterfront. From cargo and cruise terminals to hotels and restaurants, from marinas to museums, from 22 public parks to countless events, the Port contributes to the region’s prosperity and remarkable way of life on a daily basis.