Woods right guy for ship

Published 10:01 am Tuesday, September 8, 2009

It seems fitting that a former commander in the United States Navy will take the helm of the Ironton Port Authority.

Paul Woods knows a thing or two about leadership. Now the Ironton native will turn his more than 23 years of experience in the Navy toward keeping the IPA “afloat.”

Woods will take over the chairman post of the five-person volunteer committee that is focused on creating economic development for the city.

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It looks as if Woods will be a great addition to the group that already includes a number of hard-working, civic minded individuals.

First, the fact that he is retired will be a tremendous asset because he will have the time to make this his sole priority and focus all his energies toward moving Ironton forward.

All the other IPA members are committed volunteers as well, but the same traits that make them excellent members can be a double-edged sword. Each have their own businesses to run and a variety of other civic involvements, all of which can be time consuming.

That works great for the board members but this is a smart move to ensure that the leadership of the committee is essentially a full-time “employee” who won’t have to juggle as many other commitments.

Second, Woods’ military background will be of tremendous benefit as well because he has experience with leadership, goal setting, perseverance, overcoming challenges and working toward a goal with a group whose sum is truly greater than its parts.

And that is what the port authority should be about — five individuals without personal agendas or egos working toward a common good.

Third, the fact that the 1956 IHS grad has been away for many years will give him an outsider’s perspective and allow him to see things differently from the status quo.

Woods seems like the perfect choice to ensure that the proverbial ship that is Ironton never sinks.