Andrea Lueker named permanent Port San Luis harbor manager

Harbor Terrace is one of two major projects facing Andrea Lueker as manager of the Port San Luis Harbor District.
Harbor Terrace is one of two major projects facing Andrea Lueker as manager of the Port San Luis Harbor District. jjohnston@thetribunenews.com

Andrea Lueker is the new permanent harbor manager for the Port San Luis Harbor District.

After a six-month recruitment process, the harbor commission selected Lueker on April 1 in a closed-session meeting. The board was scheduled to formally approve Lueker’s employment at its Tuesday meeting.

Lueker served as the harbor’s interim manager since October. She was hired after the previous harbor manager Steve McGrath’s contract was not renewed. Her annual salary will be $125,000.

“I’m thrilled to be part of Port San Luis,” Lueker said. “We have a great group of people, and I feel at home.”

More than 40 people applied for the position. The top 10 finalists were interviewed March 28 and 29. As harbor manager, Lueker will oversee a $6 million budget and 26 full-time employees. In addition to the harbor itself, the district manages the beaches in Avila Beach and the Point San Luis Lighthouse.

The district has two major projects in the near future.

The Harbor Terrace project will create 184 camping units on 32 acres near the main entrance to Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant. Construction is scheduled to begin by June 2017.

The 1,600-foot-long Avila Pier closed in June because of deteriorating support piles. An inspection showed the pier was unsafe.

Repairs are estimated to cost $8 million to $12 million. No date for completion of the work has been set.

“Everything kind of came to a head last summer when the whales were in the harbor and the pier was in heavy use,” Lueker said.

Other projects the district will undertake include repairs to its breakwater, and ongoing dredging and sand removal.

Before joining the harbor district, Lueker worked for the City of Morro Bay for 28 years in a variety of positions, including as city manager. She resigned in January 2014 under pressure from the City Council majority. She then worked as executive director of the nonprofit Morro Bay Community Quota Fund, which advocates for the fishing industry, until moving to the Port San Luis harbor district as interim manager last October.

Related stories from San Luis Obispo Tribune