Port fills vacant commission seat

The board for the Port of Coupeville is back to being three again.

Greenbank resident Bob Monroig was appointed to fill the vacant District 3 commissioner seat during a special meeting Dec. 7.

He fills the seat vacated by Mike Diamanti, who resigned in early October.

“I’ve kind of watched from the outside looking in,” Monroig said during the meeting. “There are a lot of things just not working well.

“Someone needed to step up and represent the well wishes of the people.

“I decided I would make a one-year commitment to see if I could make it better than I found it.”

Monroig was the only candidate interviewed during the special meeting. Commissioners William Bell and John Mishasek interviewed him before a small audience, asking him about his background and experience in business and government.

Monroig has lived in Greenbank for more than 20 years. He worked for Lake Washington Technical College from 1986 to 2013 where he served in several capacities including as the state director for Skills USA, a nonprofit student leadership organization.

He said he has experience working with budgets of varying sizes, fundraising and working in the private and nonprofit sectors.

Monroig said people need to feel like they’re being heard by the port.

He also thinks the communities within the port district differ greatly in its goals and the port would be wise to foster two “friends” groups interested in focusing efforts in helping the Greenbank Farm and Coupeville Wharf separately.

Commissioners discussed the port’s budget constraints, ongoing facility needs and other concerns.

“I have no problem putting things (expenses) in neutral for an infinite period of time,” Monroig said. “I think it’s a matter of the need to have versus the nice to have.”

He added having some clear goals is key to moving forward.

Both Bell and Mishasek voted to appoint Monroig to fill the remainder of Diamanti’s term, which expired at the end of 2017.

“It sounds like you’re open to out of the box things,” Mishasek said. “I’m pretty happy with what I’m hearing.”