Mendez Tapped to Serve as Acting USDOT Deputy Secretary

AASHTO Journal, 13 December 2013

Current Federal Highway Administrator and former American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials President Victor Mendez has been announced as U.S. Department of Transportation Acting Deputy Secretary upon John Porcari’s departure, effective Jan. 1, 2014 (see related AASHTO Journal story here).

In his new role, Mendez will serve as USDOT’s chief operating officer, responsible for day-to-day operations of the department and its 55,000 employees.

“We are very excited to see someone with Victor’s background and knowledge stepping into this most important role,” said Bud Wright, AASHTO executive director. “We look forward to continuing to work closely with him as he assumes this new responsibility.”

Mendez was sworn in as FHWA Administrator in July 2009 following his Senate confirmation. During his tenure at FHWA, Mendez┬áhas been responsible for directing the agency’s implementation of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which improved the nation’s transportation infrastructure with $26.6 billion made available for bridge and highway projects across the nation. Mendez launched the Every Day Counts initiative in late 2009, which gives states tools to streamline delivery of transportation system improvements and find more cost effective ways to deliver them through new technologies and techniques.

Prior to his time with FHWA, Mendez gained plenty of state transportation department experience as Director of the Arizona Department of Transportation, where he oversaw the construction of the Regional Freeway System in Phoenix (delivered six years ahead of schedule). While serving at a state level, Mendez spent a year as President of AASHTO, where he also chaired its Standing Committee on Research, the Operations Council of the Standing Committee on Highways (or the Systems Operations and Management Subcommittee), and the oversight group for the Transportation Research Board’s Long-Term Pavement Performance program.

 

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