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Cucciardi a candidate for Port of Bremerton commissioner
South Kitsap resident, businessman and community activist Shawn Cucciardi announced on Wednesday his candidacy for the Port of Bremerton Commission Posisition 3.
Cucciardi is general manager and co-owner of McCormick Woods Golf Course and the Clubhouse Restaurant at McCormick Woods.
The commissioner seat is currently held by Commissioner Bill Mahan, who is not seeking re-election.
The only other announced candidate at this point is Axel Strakeljahn, manager of the Port Orchard Fred Meyer store.
“I don’t make this decision without serious thought and prayer,” Cucciardi said. “I formed an advisory committee and for the last several weeks have been sharing my thoughts and vision with local leaders seeking guidance and support.
“Most importantly,” he said, “my family is with me on this. At the end of the day, the enthusiasm for my candidacy has been overwhelmingly positive, and humbling for me personally.”
Cucciardi would represent the port’s Position 3, an area that runs predominately west of State Route 3 up into the Central Kitsap area.
Included in the district are large portions of Port Orchard, Bremerton, Seabeck, Ollala and Silverdale.
Cucciardi is currently serving as president of the Bremerton Chamber of Commerce.
“Shawn told me about his candidacy and I was very encouraged,” said Port Orchard City Councilman Jerry Childs, chair of Port Orchard’s Economic Development and Tourism Committee. “Shawn is a talented business professional with great people skills, and if elected would be an excellent addition to the port commission.”
Cucciardi said, “To me, being a port commissioner doesn’t really mean being in charge as much as it means being entrusted. I know our community had a huge setback in trust a few years back, and we continue to suffer for that.”
The board of commissioners needs “new leadership, cooperation at all levels, and a vision that takes into account the mistakes of the past in order to build a better future for our citizens,” Cucciardi said.
“I look forward to working with Commissioners (Larry) Stokes and (Roger) Zabinski and Executive Director Tim Thomson, in planning for the port’s future successes,” he added.
A major issue for Cucciardi will be working to keep SAFE Boats International in South Kitsap and ensure its continued success and growth.
“Our priorities are to create and maintain jobs by retaining current tenants like SAFE Boats,” Cucciardi said, “and focusing on a long-term development plan to increase business revenue and make the port fiscally self-sufficient.”
He said he welcomes this bipartisan opportunity to bring all stakeholders together for the common good.
“Together, we leverage business and workforce assets to bring even more jobs to our community,” Cucciardi said, “thus making the port the economic engine for the entire county.”
He is a board member of the South Kitsap Boys and Girls Club and a member of the South Kitsap School Supporters.