With the recent approval of a 2019-2020 budget and new leaders on board, the Ventura Port District is moving full steam ahead into the new fiscal year.
Under the leadership of the district’s new general manager, Brian Pendleton, appointed on May 1, and with the addition this month of Commissioner Mike Blumenberg, the Ventura Board of Port Commissioners is poised to oversee the completion of several major enterprises in the months ahead.
Topping the list is the Ventura Harbor Village Marina Dock Improvement Project; now in progress, the $4.6 million project aims to greatly bolster the harbor’s commercial fishing industry as one of the largest commercial marinas on the West Coast.
The Ventura Port Commission also awaits the 2020 opening of Portside Ventura Harbor, a coastal 300-unit mixed-use residential development. In addition, the Port District is heading up a painting refresh of Ventura Harbor Village to introduce new sea-inspired hues this fall.
Settling into his new post, Blumenberg said he is excited to serve as a part of Ventura Harbor’s bright future.
“The harbor is a great and unique property,” said Blumenberg, a Ventura resident with a long professional history in engineering, ocean engineering and project management. “You’ve got everything at the harbor: commercial fishing, retail, recreation, restaurants, scenic beauty, and an opportunity to enhance the experience for our residents and visitors alike.”
“As a commissioner, I will support the Ventura Port District staff and harbor tenants to be able to take it to the next level,” Blumenberg said. “I look forward to assisting the harbor to continue to position itself as a major economic driver for the city.”
Raised in Milwaukee, Blumenberg gravitated young to the sea. Entering the Naval Academy out of high school, he served 24 years in uniform, going from salvage diver to the Civil Engineer Corps. He served in a variety of duty stations around the country, including several years at the Navy base in Port Hueneme. He retired in 2006 as a commander in the Navy Civil Engineer Corps’ Ocean Facilities Program. After his naval career, Blumenberg joined the Northrop Grumman Corporation, working on a variety of projects and ultimately becoming a program manager.
With his wife, a registered nurse, and their two sons, he lived and worked in Sacramento for a decade before moving the family to Ventura three and a half years ago, where he remains at Northrop Grumman – and now in a role that has him working with the Navy again. “It’s kind of coming back to my roots,” he said.
It was a natural for Blumenberg to offer his services on the port commission, based on his knowledge and experience, his love of the sea and his call to civic duty. “I think it’s important that everyone finds a way to serve the community, to make it better,” he said.
Blumenberg’s four-year term on the Port Commission began on July 1. He joins Chris Stephens, board chairman; Brian Brennan, vice chairman; Everard Ashworth; and Jackie Gardina, who was appointed to the commission in March.
The Ventura Port District, home to the Channel Islands National Park, provides a safe and navigable harbor and a seaside destination that benefits residents, visitors, fishermen and boaters, allowing them to enjoy Ventura Harbor’s exceptional facilities, events and services. The Ventura Harbor is a 274-acre multiple-use recreational and commercial fishing small-craft harbor managed and operated by the special district in Central Coast California.