Port also names new Port Facilities Technician and Receptionist


The Port of Kalama has appointed Eric Yakovich to the role of economic development manager. Yakovich will manage new and ongoing construction and community projects, assist Port clients during development projects, participate in regional economic development initiatives and administer grants for Port projects. Yakovich will also oversee Port records, reception, security and safety, as well as infrastructure.

Prior to Yakovich’s move to the Port of Kalama, he was Chief Executive Officer for Cowlitz County Guidance Association, a comprehensive community mental health center. The Association served Longview, Woodland, Kelso, Kalama and Castle Rock and over 6500 people a year. He also worked at Columbia River Mental Health Services.

Eric’s initial projects include infrastructure development for the proposed methanol plant, extending walking paths, building demolition, warehouse construction and laying new railroad tracks.
The Port of Kalama also appointed Russell Watts to the role of Field and Maintenance Operations/Facilities Technician. Watts brings 40 years’ experience working for municipal treatment plants in Vancouver, Gresham and North Bonneville. He holds a Group 3 Certificate in wastewater handling from the State of Washington.

Watts will assist the wastewater treatment operator with general operations, and assist the Port maintenance crew with general upkeep, maintenance and repair of all Port properties and facilities.

Jackie Heupel joins the Port of Kalama as receptionist. Heupel is the first point of contact for the public visiting the Port administration building and knowledgeable about Port facilities, events and marina operations.

Heupel has worked in customer service for Underwriter Laboratories, a public safety company that tests products to ensure safety standards are met. Currently she is enrolled at Warner Pacific College’s ADP (Adult Degree Program) working on her Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a focus in Management.

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