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Jesus “Jess” Romo will be the next director of the Long Beach Airport, a release from the city manager’s office announced today.

Romo, who most recently served as interim deputy executive director for Los Angeles World Airports, overseeing operations and emergency management at Los Angeles International Airport, will replace Bryant Francis, who left for a post at Oakland International Airport in February.

Roma has a bachelor of arts degree in psychology from the University of California, Irvine, and master of arts degree in industrial psychology from California State University, Los Angeles. He is an accredited airport executive of the American Association of Airport Executives (AAAE) and a recipient of the 2015 Award for Airport Executive Partnership from the National Air Transportation Association.

"Mr. Romo is an accomplished aviation professional who will provide strong leadership and strategic planning for Long Beach Airport," city manager Patrick West said in a release. “He will work collaboratively with all stakeholders, including the community, tenants and our commercial and general aviation partners.”

As director, Romo will oversee Long Beach Airport’s operations, finances and leases, the Airport Noise Ordinance, community outreach, environmental matters, capital improvements, tenant relationships, security, air service and public affairs.

"I am grateful for this opportunity and look forward to working with the community, all airport stakeholders and partners,” Romo said in a release. “I am committed to being an approachable and responsive steward of this great airport.”

He is scheduled to begin at the airport Sept. 6.

Juan Lopez-Rios, who served as interim director during the search for Francis’s replacement, will stay on as deputy director under Romo.

Jennifer Rice Epstein writes about business, environmental issues and K-12 education. Her essays and reporting also have appeared in The Morning News, Vice and LA Weekly, among others. She lives with her family in Bixby Knolls and tweets about Long Beach.

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