Executive Management - SC Ports Authority

Executive Management

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James I. (Jim) Newsome, III
President and CEO
Mr. Newsome became President & CEO of the South Carolina Ports Authority (SCPA) on September 1, 2009 and is only the fifth leader in the history of the organization. He was previously President of Hapag-Lloyd (America), Inc., which is part of the worlds fifth-largest ocean shipping company. In September 2019, S.C. Ports celebrated 10 years of Newsome’s leadership

Prior to joining Hapag-Lloyd in 1997, Mr. Newsome was with Nedlloyd Lines from 1987 to 1997. He was Executive Vice President of the Americas for Nedlloyd Lines and President of Nedlloyd Lines (USA) Corporation based in Atlanta. In this capacity, he was the first non-Dutch member of the Executive Committee of Nedlloyd Lines and was responsible for North and Latin America and the Transatlantic trade. He held other senior management positions within that company. Before that, Mr. Newsome spent 10 years with Strachan Shipping Company, where he was President of their Hoegh Lines Agencies subsidiary in Jersey City, NJ. He held other positions in Houston, Texas and New York City, with Strachan.

Mr. Newsome has received many prestigious awards and honors including:

He is currently involved in numerous organizations:

  • University of Tennessee, College of Business Administration, Deans Advisory Council
  • University of Tennessee, Global Supply Chain Institute, Executive Advisory Board
  • University of Tennessee, College of Business Administration, 1914 Society
  • The College of Charleston, School of Business, Board of Governors
  • Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC), Childrens Hospital Fund Advisory Board
  • US Department of Commerce Advisory Committee on Supply Chain Competitiveness
  • Intermodal Association of North America, Board of Directors, Marine Division
  • Coalition for Responsible Transportation (CRT), Board of Directors
  • American Heart Association, Mid-Atlantic Board
  • American Heart Association, Lowcountry Heart Walk, Executive Leadership Team and Past Chairman
  • Trident United Way, Tocqueville Society

Mr. Newsome received a BS in Transportation and Logistics in 1976 and a MBA in Transportation and Logistics in 1977 from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, TN. He was the top graduate in the College of Business Administration for Winter Quarter, 1976. He was named the Outstanding Alumnus in Transportation and Logistics in 1992.

Barbara L. Melvin
Chief Operating Officer (COO)

As Chief Operating Officer, Ms. Melvin oversees terminal operations, carrier sales, information technology and support services, crane and equipment maintenance, engineering, environmental, Port Police, procurement, the logistics solution center, and cruise operations. Ms. Melvin also serves as the SCPA’s lead staff person on the Charleston Harbor Post 45 Project and the Jasper Ocean Terminal Project.

During her 20+ years with SCPA, Ms. Melvin has held several senior leadership positions, including Senior Vice President, Operations and Terminals, Senior Vice President, External Affairs, and Vice President, Government Relations. Before joining the Port in 1998, she served as Director of Government Relations for the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce and as a policy analyst for the Georgia Governor’s Office of Planning and Budget.

Ms. Melvin is a Riley Institute Diversity Leadership graduate, a member of the South Carolina Advisory Council of the United States Global Leadership Coalition, the Ports Caucus Advisory Board for the United States Congress, The Citadel Baker School of Business Advisory Board, Incoming Board Chair of the American Heart Association Charleston Board (2020-2021), a member of the Trident United Way Board of Directors, and a Liberty Fellow. She is a Community Advisor for the Junior League, a former member of the Business Advocacy Committee of the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce, a past Chair of the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce, a former member of the board of Charleston Wine+Food Festival, a former member of the board for Communities in Schools and the South Carolina Maritime Foundation.

Ms. Melvin was awarded the 2018 ILA Woman of the Year, the Center for Women’s Most Influential Women Wrecking Ball Award, the Charleston Women in International Trade (CWIT) 2014 Woman of the Year, The Propeller Club of Charleston and South East Region Maritime Person of the Year, the National Transportation Week Leader of the Year, and Columbia South Carolinas 2014 Top Women of Influence Award. She holds a bachelors degree in political science from Georgia Southern University with a minor in international relations and a Masters in Business Administration in Global Supply Chain from the University of Tennessee Haslam School of Business.

Beverly Cowart
Senior Vice President, Talent Solutions
Mrs. Cowart is Senior Vice President of Talent Solutions at SCPA. She is responsible for talent acquisition, compensation, benefits, labor, employee relations, and leadership training and development programs. Prior to assuming the helm of the Talent Solutions Department, she served as SCPA’s Human Resources Director for the past two years.

Cowart has a decade of experience as an engineer at companies that include the Charleston Naval Shipyard and Robert Bosch Corp. She also has more than two decades of experience in Human Resources. She most recently spent six years at MWV/Ingevity as manager of global learning and organizational development before joining the Port. Cowart earned a Bachelor of Science in industrial engineering from Auburn University and a Master of Business Administration with an emphasis in human resources from Charleston Southern University. She has volunteered her time and skills to assist team members of local charitable agencies, such as Trident United Way, East Cooper Community Outreach (ECCO), and various other civic and religious organizations.

Paul G. McClintock
Senior Vice President, Marketing & Sales

Mr. McClintock is Senior Vice President of Marketing & Sales for the South Carolina Ports Authority (SCPA). His areas of responsibility include all sales and marketing efforts for Charleston and Georgetown, as well as break bulk and bulk development functions. Mr. McClintock has 34 years of experience in maritime and general supply chain logistics. He has held executive positions in sales and operations management.

He previously served as Vice President North America Sales for MOL (America) Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. (MOL), one of the worlds largest multi-modal shipping companies. Mr. McClintock earned a bachelors degree in marketing from the University of Scranton. He joined the SCPA in May 2009.

Phillip Padgett
Senior Vice President, Finance and Chief Financial Officer (CFO)
Mr. Padgett joined the Authority in June 2016 as Controller and is currently the Chief Financial Officer (CFO). In this role, Mr. Padgett is responsible for the financial, risk management, and real estate activities of the Authority.

Mr. Padgett is a Certified Public Accountant with ten years of experience auditing, managing finance and accounting operations, and developing short and long-term financial plans, budgets, and forecasts. He also has experience in the daily operations of insurance, investment, and real estate development.

Mr. Padgett began his career in public accounting in Charleston with Johnson Lambert, a niche focused CPA firm specializing in insurance. He spent over five years in the audit and assurance practice serving commercial and captive insurance companies. Prior to joining the Authority, Phil served as Controller for Kane (USA), Inc., an insurance management company that was purchased by a subsidiary of Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. around the time of his departure.

He is a member of the South Carolina Association of CPAs and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. He graduated from Francis Marion University with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance and has a Master of Science in Accountancy from the College of Charleston.

Jordi R. Yarborough
Senior Vice President, External Affairs

Jordi Yarborough joined the South Carolina Ports Authority in 2017 as Senior Vice President of External Affairs. In this role she manages relationships with SCPAs external stakeholders and leads the organizations government, media and public relations, advertising, website and digital efforts, as well as community outreach programs, including the Port Ambassadors business leadership program.

Ms. Yarborough has 20+ years of experience in the Government Relations field, lobbying and managing lobbyists on both the state and multi-state levels. Prior to joining the Port, she directed government affairs efforts in the Southeast region on behalf of Check Into Cash Inc., one of the largest consumer finance companies in the United States. She was a partner with The Yarborough Group from 2005 until 2011, assisting clients with legislative activity in Maryland, Virginia, South Carolina, and Mississippi. And from 1998 until 2005, she served as Director of Government Relations for Roper St. Francis Healthcare, where she managed all legislative and regulatory communications for the healthcare system.

Ms. Yarborough currently serves on The South Carolina Automotive Council Board, The SC International Trade Conference Board, and The South Carolina Logistics Council and is a Riley Institute Diversity Leadership graduate. She has previously served on numerous boards and legislative committees in the healthcare industry including The South Carolina Hospital Association Legislative Committee, The American Hospital Association Government Relations Officers Committee, and The Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce Legislative Committee. In 2003 she was named a Charleston Regional Business Journal 40 under 40 award recipient.

Ms. Yarborough holds a bachelors degree in Human Ecology from the University of Tennessee.