Alberto Alemán Zubieta began his professional career in the construction field. For many years, he served as CEO of one of the largest construction companies in the Republic of Panama, Constructora Urbana, S.A.
From 1996 to 1999, he served as Administrator of the former Panama Canal Commission, the United States Government federal agency which was responsible, until December 31, 1999, for the administration and operation of the Panama Canal.
In 1998, two years into his appointment as head of the Panama Canal Commission, he was appointed Administrator of the Panama Canal Authority, the Panamanian entity tasked with the administration of the waterway upon its transfer to the Republic of Panama, which took place on December 31, 1999. During the following two years, he served simultaneously as Administrator for both the Panama Canal Commission and the Panama Canal Authority, ensuring that the decisions taken under the Panama Canal Commission would have continuity under the Panama Canal Authority. In 2005, the Board of Directors re-elected him to lead the Panama Canal Authority for another seven years, position he held until September 3, 2012.
Under his leadership, the Panama Canal Authority´s vision has been to transform the Canal into a world leader in services to the maritime industry, to be the cornerstone of the global transportation system, and a model of excellence, integrity, and transparency.
Alberto Alemán Zubieta has been instrumental in promoting a sense of pride among Panamanians for the Panama Canal. The maritime industry has acknowledged his leadership in transforming the Canal into a successful model of operation. For these reasons, his participation is frequently requested in different forums, in order to share his thoughts and best practices. After 16 years of serving his country, Alberto Alemán Zubieta returned to the private practice as engineer and consultant in the Logistics and Project Management field.
He has been distinguished and received recognition from the governments of Spain (Order from Isabella the Catholic), Colombia (National Order), France (National Order of the Legion of Honor), Brasil (Order of Río Branco) and Panamá for his contributions to the world maritime industry. Additionally, he has received international awards from organizations including Containerization & Intermodal Institute (CONNIE Award), Latin Trade magazine (BRAVO Business Awards), Lloyd´s, International Maritime Organization (Maritime Prize 2008), Seamen´s Church Institute, and Seatrade. He was awarded Doctor of Science in Maritime Affairs, Honoris Causa, by the Board of Governors of the World Maritime University in Malmo, Sweden; and Doctor Honoris Causa, by Universidad Tecnologica de Panama.
A native of Panama City, Republic of Panama, Alberto Alemán Zubieta is a graduate of the civil and industrial engineering schools of Texas A&M University.