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Personnel File - December 2008: Marine Industries

Bob Peele
Director, Wanchese Seafood Industrial Park

For 10 years, Bob Peele, 45, has overseen operations at Wanchese Seafood Industrial Park, a 60-acre site that opened in 1981. Just before the Bear Grass native started there, it had expanded to embrace all marine-related ventures, not just seafood businesses. Today, it has 26 tenants, including commercial-fishing and boat-building businesses, government agencies such as the Coast Guard and the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries and a full-service marina.

Résumé: Bachelor’s in political science in 1987 from N.C. State University. Served on the staffs of U.S. Rep. Walter Jones Sr. and U.S. Rep. H. Martin Lancaster from 1987 to 1994. Assistant director of the North Carolina Fisheries Association in New Bern in 1994. Coor- dinator for the Oregon Inlet Jetty Project 1995-1998. Acting director of the Wanchese park 1998-2000.

Numbers: The park will get $128,000 in state funding this year and will generate $387,000 in revenue. Peele’s salary is $84,000.

Outlook for the park’s boat builders: “A lot of these guys have back orders from the past few years.” For commercial fishermen: “Something’s going to have to change. These guys can’t turn around without some government agency telling them what they can and can’t do.”