Maritime News

AAPA Grows Government Relations Team with Additions of Appropriations, Infrastructure Aces

The American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) — the unified voice of seaports in the Americas — welcomes Jen Armstrong and Matt Wiggins to manage AAPA's navigation policy and infrastructure portfolios, respectively.

Armstrong oversees seaport waterside infrastructure issues, including the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund (HMTF) and AAPA’s Quality Partnership Initiative (QPI) with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). She also serves as staff liaison to the Harbors and Navigation Committee, composed of experts across the industry, including port employees, regulators, and users of the waterway system.

Armstrong comes to AAPA from the United States Senate Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development. She has extensive USACE experience and cements AAPA’s leadership in the areas of HMTF, regulatory policies across National Marine Fisheries, the U.S. Coast Guard, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and much more.

Armstrong served as the Republican Staff Director/Clerk of the Energy and Water Development Appropriations Subcommittee, which provides $53 billion in funding to the USACE, Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE), and several independent agencies. Armstrong’s expertise is the water portfolio, which includes the USACE’s Civil Works mission and water supply activities under the purview of the Bureau of Reclamation. Prior to her work on the subcommittee, Armstrong worked with the USACE as a water resources planner, project manager, and government affairs liaison specializing in navigation, coastal storm damage reduction, and ecosystem restoration.

Matt Wiggins has assumed the role of freight and infrastructure policy associate, to shoulder the responsibilities of advocating for effective landside port policy, including cargo and freight infrastructure and supply chain fluidity.

Wiggins’ background is in transportation policy; he joins AAPA from the RV Industry Association where he served as a policy analyst for supply chain and vehicle electrification.

Billions of dollars in Federal funding are earmarked for port infrastructure due to the combination of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund Reform. AAPA’s growing team is laser-focused on cutting red tape for the disbursement of the money to strengthen America’s ports. AAPA also advocates for long-term, sustainable funding to meet the challenge of growing freight volumes.

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