Port of Kalama Commissioners are elected to six-year terms as defined by law. Many of the Port’s projects and developments are the results of long-term planning and decades long vision of many Port commissioners.
The elected Port of Kalama Board of Commissioners sets Port policy following the organizational mission is ‘to induce capital investment in an environmentally responsible manner to create jobs and to enhance public recreational opportunities.’ The Commission ensures a sound economic development strategy for the Port to create a balanced and diverse industry base and provide living wage jobs and a range of community recreational amenities.
So, who are these community leaders?
Alan Basso has served as a Kalama Port Commissioner since 2012. He is a long-time Kalama resident and currently serves as a Lieutenant and Fire Investigator with the Longview Fire Department. Basso graduated from Kalama High School in 1980, earned a BA degree at Washington State University in 1986 and received an AAS in Fire Protection Technology from Portland Community College in 2010.
Alan is fourth generation Kalama citizen—his maternal grandfather, Otto Kockritz, was born here in 1890. His father built the Kockritz Hotel in 1908, which is now home to Poker Pete’s. Alan’s maternal great grandmother moved to Kalama, settling up the River in 1904 on a farm known as ‘The Red Barn.’ His paternal grandparents emigrated from Finland and settled on Green Mountain in 1919. In 1923, Alan’s great aunt and husband arrived and purchased a nearby farm. In 1948, his parents bought the great aunt’s home, and he, in turn, bought it to keep it all in the family.
Troy Stariha has served as a Commissioner for the Port of Kalama since 2010.
He also is currently serving as Chair for the Executive Committee for the Cowlitz-Wahkiakum Council of Governments. A long-time Kalama resident, he graduated from Kalama High School in 1989. Troy has worked for Kalama Auto Supply and Repair for 27 years, purchasing the business in 2003. As a small business owner within his community, he understands the area’s desires and future needs on a personal level.
His focus on economic development helps the port successfully create a balance of quality of life and family-wage jobs in the region. The Port of Kalama is an integral part of their community and Troy is proud to serve as commissioner. Troy is the father of three boys and has one grandchild. Much of his free time is spent attending his sons’ sporting events. Other hobbies include playing golf, watching NASCAR and attending community events.
Randy Sweet has served as a Kalama Port Commissioner since 2005. An engineering geologist and hydrogeologist with degrees from LCC, Western Washington and the University of Oregon, he founded a very successful nationwide environmental consulting business. He is also past president of the St. John Foundation and chairman of the Cowlitz County Planning Commission, and is a founding member of the Lower Columbia Fish Recovery Board. Randy and his wife Sheli have lived in the oldest house in Kalama for over 40 years!
Port Commissioners have many responsibilities to ensure optimum use of port facilities, acreage and infrastructure. The commission oversees everything from marina and industrial improvements to due diligence on industries that fit and comply with the mission of the Port and the culture of the community, as well as investment in community recreational facilities like parks, walking paths, marina and other amenities.
Thank you for your service to our community, Commissioners Basso, Stariha and Sweet! You are appreciated.
The Port Commission is here to serve the community
Citizens interested in communicating with their Port of Kalama Commissioner can call the Port offices at 360-673-2325; send letters to their Commissioner at the Port office, 110 West Marine Drive, Kalama, Washington 98625; or email Commission@PortofKalama.com.