Port of Benton
Diahann Howard has been with the Port of Benton (the Port) since 2006 as the Director of Economic Development & Governmental Affairs. She supports the Port’s land and building development, grants and legislative requests both state and federal. In addition to her Port responsibilities, she serves as the Executive Director for the Tri Cities Research District, one of 14 Washington State Innovation Partnership Zones. Prior to the Port, she was the city of Richland’s Economic Development Manager.
Ms. Howard serves on the board of the Tri Cities Legislative Council, Applied Process Engineering Laboratory advisory board, Eastern Washington University President’s Regional Advisory Council, United Way, Washington Public Port Association Economic Development and Legislative committees, as well as various others. During her last 12 years at the Port her activities have resulted in over $16.9 million of grant and legislative funding; examples include $5 million to support the Wine Science Center at Washington State University Tri-Cities, $2.2 million for Columbia Park Trail Bridge, $5.4 million to complete Delta High School new construction and 1,641 acres of industrial land transferred from the Department of Energy.
She is a graduate of Eastern Washington University with a Bachelor of Science in International Affairs with a Spanish Minor. Ms. Howard was also Richland Rotary Club President 2017-2018 and was named Rotarian of the Year in 2012. She is currently working on her Professional Port Manager Certification Program through the American Association of Port Authorities.
Ms. Howard serves on the EMAB as a special government employee to provide expert advice on strategic planning and governmental affairs and was appointed to the Board in October 2018.