Paul Blank, a former Newport Beach City Harbor Commissioner and avid boater with deep roots in the local maritime community, has been appointed as the city’s new Harbormaster. Blank assumed the position on May 3.
Blank previously served for eight years on the Harbor Commission, an advisory body that helps the City Council evaluate programs and set policies for Newport Harbor.
He is a longtime resident and boater who has served in leadership positions with the Balboa Yacht Club, Corona del Mar Residents Association and Catalina Island Conservancy. He also has experience in management roles in information technology and hotel operations.
“I’m very pleased to welcome Paul to our City’s team,” said Assistant City Manager Carol Jacobs, who oversees the Harbor Department. “His experience, knowledge of the harbor, and relationships with key stakeholders in the maritime community make him a great fit for the position.”
As Harbormaster, Blank will manage day-to-day operations of the Harbor Department and oversee a staff of one full-time employee and 13 part-time employees.
The Harbor Department staff serve as “ambassadors” of Newport Harbor, providing education and assistance to residents and visiting boaters. The department also coordinates the use of anchorages and mooring fields and manages the City’s guest marina at Marina Park, among other responsibilities.
With many recreational and commercial uses, Newport Harbor is a vibrant economic engine in the City, generating about $393 million a year in direct economic output, more than $1 billion a year in indirect economic impacts, and directly supporting more than 4,800 jobs.