James Pruett
James Pruett

The newly appointed general manager of the San Mateo County Harbor District is no stranger to the Coastside. James “Jim” Pruett grew up in Pacifica and his family owned a fishing business at Pillar Point Harbor.

Although he left the area decades ago, he is looking forward to returning to what he refers to as “home.” 

Pruett most recently served as chief of staff for the 11th Coast Guard District based in Alameda, where he was the lead adviser on missions conducted in California, Arizona, Nevada and Utah and the coastal and offshore waters covering about 3.3 million square nautical miles.

“As a Coast Guard officer, we work with the public and the community in the maritime and the waterfront. It’s part of our primary responsibilities,” Pruett said. “… I see that as a natural carry on into this role.” 

Throughout his lengthy career in the Coast Guard, Pruett served in many management roles, including as the commander of Coast Guard Sector Guam and deputy commander in Miami, Fla. 

“I was familiar with the harbormaster’s office and I know what the harbormaster’s office encompasses, not specifically with Half Moon Bay or Oyster Point, but other marinas around the country,” he said. 

Pruett also attended Golden Gate University School of Law in San Francisco and served in several legal assignments as a judge advocate and law specialist.

“I am a licensed attorney in the state of California and operations commander. Both of those will be very beneficial for me working with the team here,” he said. 

At the Nov. 20 district meeting, the four board commissioners present unanimously approved Pruett’s contract and hired him as the new general manager. Commissioner Sabrina Brennan was absent. 

Pruett assumes his new position on Dec. 11. He said is looking forward to meeting with staff and the commissioners to come up with goals to continue the work of the drafted strategic plan for the district. 

“I am just honored I have the opportunity to continue to serve local government,” he said. “I’ll integrate with the team and see how we can plan to move that (the strategic plan) forward.” 

Currently Pruett lives in the North Bay, but he said he is planning to relocate to the Coastside with his wife. 

“I not only want to be the Harbor District’s general manager, but I want to get involved in other areas of the community as well,” he said. “I am just excited to get started and get over there.” 


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