AASHTO’s Water Council Gets New Chair, Forms Steering Committee

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials appointed Kevin Thibault (seen above), secretary of the Florida Department of Transportation, to a two-year term as chair of its Council on Water Transportation.

That council has also created a new steering committee in April to provide input on policy, research, technical, and educational issues, as well as help shape its future in-person meetings.

Kevin Thibault

Thibault – appointed by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R) as the state’s transportation secretary in January this year – served in several leadership positions within the Florida DOT during a 16-year career with the agency.

He most recently served as the southeast regional senior vice president of TranSystems Corp., a global transportation engineering, architectural planning, design and construction firm, and holds a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

The Council on Water Transportation that Thibault will oversee addresses all policy, regulatory, safety, and enforcement issues impacting the nation’s coastal, inland, and Great Lakes waterways’ ability to move goods efficiently on the national freight transportation network.

Providing deeper analysis on water transportation issues is why the council created its new steering committee, which will consist of 10 members who will serve two-year terms, with the option to serve one additional two-year term if reappointed by its chair.

Members of the steering committee – which is meeting on an acting basis until the change to the water council’s charter that allowed it to be formed is approved by AASHTO’s Strategic Management Committee – includes:

  • Chair – TBD
  • Vice Chair – Deidre Smith, Arkansas Waterways Commission
  • Deepwater Representative – Andrew Sinclair, Virginia Port Authority
  • Deepwater Representative – Ron Pate, Washington State Department of Transportation
  • Inland Waterways Representative – Cheryl Ball, Missouri Department of Transportation
  • Inland Waterways Representative – Thaddaeus Babb, Oklahoma Department of Transportation
  • Region 1 (Northeast) Representative – TBD
  • Region 2 (Southeast) Representative – Chris Collins, Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development
  • Region 3 (Midwest)/Great Lakes Representative – Patrick Phenow, Minnesota Department of Transportation
  • Region 4 (West) Representative – Dan Harmon, Texas Department of Transportation

The full Council on Water Transportation will meet in person next during AASHTO’s Annual Meeting on Sunday, October 6, in St. Louis.

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