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Panama Canal gets first ever female deputy administrator

As the New Year commences, on 1st January, Ilya Espino de Marotta took office as Deputy Administrator of the Panama Canal, becoming the first woman to ever hold this position.

Espino de Marotta progressed through the ranks since she first began her journey in 1985 as the sole female engineer at the shipyard. Now she works alongside over 1,000 women and recently served as vice president of transit business and vice president for engineering during the Panama Canal expansion program.

Aristides Royo, Panama Canal board of directors’ chairman, comments, “Ilya skilfully oversaw the construction of the Expanded Canal, leading the waterway into a new era for global shipping”.    

Ricaurte Vásquez Morales, Panama Canal administrator who recently took the office for a seven-year term, expresses “It is a great honour to work alongside a visionary such as Ilya, and I am certain that she will continue leading the Canal into a new decade of inspired innovation”.

It was in February 2019 when the Panama Canal board of directors appointed Espino de Marotta as deputy administrator in February 2019, where she succeeds Manuel Benitez as he retires after more than 40 years with the canal.

This year will be the anniversary of two decades under the Panamanian administrator after it was transferred to the Panamanian people on 31st December 1999, so with Espino de Marotta’s taking to office there will be more means for celebration.

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