AASHTO Journal, 18 November 2016
The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials’ Board of Directors elected Maine Department of Transportation Commissioner David Bernhardt as the association’s president for the coming year, and elected Tennessee DOT Commissioner John Schroer as vice president.
Together with Secretary/Treasurer Carlos Braceras, who is executive director of the Utah DOT, they will head AASHTO’s 52-member board for the year ahead.
It’s an honor and a privilege to be selected to serve in this important national role,” said Bernhardt. “I’ve spent my entire professional career in transportation, rising through the ranks at Maine DOT as both a professional engineer and administrator. My experience has helped to prepare me for both the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.”
Maine Gov. Paul LePage appointed Bernhardt in February 2011 to lead the department, after he had held several top positions there including director of engineering and operations. At AASHTO, he was the past year’s vice president and as such chaired the FAST Act Implementation and Reauthorization Steering Committee, but that chairmanship automatically goes to the new vice president.
As the association’s president, Bernhardt said he will concentrate his attention on three main areas, Bernhardt plans to work closely with the administration of incoming President Trump and with the new Congress to develop strong transportation legislation.
He will also focus on freight and freight connectivity issues and on implementing AASHTO’s committee restructuring, under a plan the board also approved Nov. 15. (See related story.)
Bernhardt also said that “AASHTO has helped to shape America’s transportation priorities for more than 100 years. My priority will be to continue this great work as president because, when you think about it, transportation is a bipartisan issue. Everyone benefits from the roadways, bridges, pedestrian and bicycle trails that are revitalizing urban and rural communities and creating jobs and economic development here at home.”
Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam named Schroer to head that state’s DOT in January 2011. Before that Schroer was mayor of Franklin, Tenn.
He has chaired AASHTO’s Standing Committee on Finance and Administration, and as association vice president will now helm the FAST Act panel and a new Board of Directors Strategic Management Committee.