M. Clark Merritt Jr., serves as the Economic Development Manager for the Port of Pensacola.
In this capacity, Merritt coordinates economic development and opportunity efforts for the Port of Pensacola, seeking existing customer expansion and recruitment of new businesses and industries for one of only 15 State of Florida deep water ports.
Merritt, a native of Pensacola, graduated from the University of Florida with a bachelor’s degree in political science and concurrently was commissioned an ensign in the U.S. Navy through the Navy Reserve Officer Training Corps program. He remained on active duty until 2000 after tours in tactical aviation squadrons including combat operations during the first Gulf War and as the maintenance officer for the Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron (Blue Angels) during the 1996-1997 show seasons. He retired from the U.S. Navy in 2010 after 22 years of active and reserve service.
Returning to Pensacola in 2002, Merritt was a project and business development lead with Lockheed Martin Information Systems and Global Solutions developing and fielding training systems for the Department of Defense and other international militaries.
More recently, Merritt served as a senior staff member with U.S. Congressman Jeff Miller of Florida’s First District responsible for Department of Defense and Veterans Affairs (VA) liaison efforts in addition to providing district constituent support and other operational duties for the congressman.
He is active in the community as a board member of Rotary, the Fiesta of Five Flags organization, Perdido Bay Youth Sports Association, and serves on the board of the Blue Angels Association.
Clark and his wife Perry have three children, Jane, Gabrielle and Clark III.