President and Chief Executive Officer of American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA)
Kurt Nagle has over 30 years of experience in Washington, DC, related to seaports and international trade. Since 1995, Mr. Nagle has served as President and Chief Executive Officer for the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA). Mr. Nagle began working at AAPA, the alliance of the leading public port authorities throughout the Western Hemisphere, in 1985.

Prior to joining AAPA, Mr. Nagle was Director of International Trade for the National Coal Association and Assistant Secretary for the Coal Exporters Association. Previously, he worked in the Office of International Economic Research at the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Mr. Nagle serves on the Executive Committee of the Propeller Club of the United States and is a former commissioner of PIANC, the International Navigation Congress.

Mr. Nagle holds a Master’s Degree in Economics from George Mason University.

AAPA: The preeminent voice of the seaport industry

The American Association of Port Authorities is the unified voice of the seaport industry in the Americas, representing more than 130 public port authorities in the U.S., Canada, the Caribbean and Latin America. For more than a century, AAPA membership has empowered port authorities and their maritime industry partners to serve global customers and create economic and social value for their communities. Our events, resources and partnerships connect, inform and unify seaport leaders and maritime professionals who deliver prosperity around the western hemisphere. For its U.S. members, AAPA provides compelling advocacy and effective public outreach to influence seaports’ most urgent public policy issues. Today, AAPA continues to promote the common interests of the port community, and provides critical industry leadership on security, trade, transportation, infrastructure, environmental and other issues related to port development and operations.


Principal Geotechnical Engineer, United States Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration
Silas Nichols is the Principal Geotechnical Engineer and Manager of the National Geotechnical Program for the Federal Highway Administration’s Office of Infrastructure. Nichols is responsible for providing leadership and direction for the FHWA National Geotechnical Team through policy development, technical guidance development, and coordination with industry and professional groups. He also provides expert technical assistance on major and complex highway projects nationally and internationally. Nichols has been with the FHWA for nearly 15 years both in Headquarters and with the Resource Center. Nichols is identified as a leader in assisting transportation partners in finding innovative and cost effective solutions to wide variety of geotechnical problems. He is recognized for his work on design, construction, and forensic evaluations of foundations, ground improvement techniques, and earth retaining structures. Silas holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Engineering from Syracuse University, a Master’s Degree in Geotechnical Engineering from Tufts University, and is a certified Master trainer. Prior to employment with the FHWA, Nichols served more than 10 years in private consulting in the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic United States.

Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) develops and delivers national leadership, innovation, and stewardship of the surface transportation system through the work of its Program Offices. Each office works to advance the USDOT mission of ensuring a fast, safe, efficient, accessible and convenient transportation system that meets our vital national interests and enhances the quality of life of the American people, today and into the future. The Office of Infrastructure provides leadership, technical expertise, and program assistance to help sustain America’s mobility in: Asset Management, Pavements, and Construction; Bridges and Structures; Program Administration; and Transportation Performance Management.

Larry Harvey

Co-Founder and Executive Director of Science and Technology at the Center for Applied Space Technology
Lawrence M. (Larry) Harvey is the Co-Founder and Director of Science and Technology for the not-for-profit Center for Applied Space Technology (CAST). Established to promote the transfer and preservation of NASA expertise, the CAST mission has evolved to “promote the innovative application of space-enabled and space-enabling technologies”.
Larry is a graduate of the United States Naval Academy where he majored in Physics and Oceanography. He received his Master of Science in Applied Physics from the Naval Postgraduate School with his research focused on the innovative application of emerging space technology (GPS) on underwater search and surveillance.
Harvey, besides being a former astronaut candidate prior to the Challenger disaster in 1986, is part of the second generation of a family to be associated with the Kennedy Space Center. Enhance your space knowledge as his presentation includes a historical perspective surrounding the development of the space program including the design and build of the VAB (Vehicle Assembly Building), which is one of the largest buildings in the world by area and stands atop a support base on 4,225 steel pilings driven 164 feet into bedrock, along with other updates on the Kennedy Space Center and the future of SpaceX and Blue Origin projects.

Center for Applied Space Technology (CAST)

Though long the subject of speculation between physical scientist and poet alike, it’s the contention of the Center for Applied Space Technology (CAST) that there is no easily identifiable demarcation between the heights and the depths … that the analogs between space science and marine and terrestrial science are both long-standing and compelling.

CAST seeks to identify and exploit these analogs as necessary in order to promote cutting-edge applications, research, and education.

Originally established to support NASA requirements for technology transfer and preservation, particularly in the space life sciences, CAST has evolved both mission and scope into a very concise focus:

• To identify and support the innovative application of space-enabled and space-enabling technologies.