Former U.S. Secretary of Transportation
As Secretary of Transportation under President Bill Clinton, Rodney E. Slater spearheaded several historic legislative measures over his tenure, including the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21), which guaranteed a record $200 billion in surface transportation investment though 2003, and the Wendell H. Ford Aviation Investment Reform Act for the 21st Century (AIR-21), which provided a record $46 billion to improve the safety and security of the nation’s aviation system. Under his leadership, the federal transportation budget doubled and, in the Department’s "best in government" strategic and performance plans, the scope and definition of transportation was expanded to include a focus on safety, mobility and access, economic development and trade, the environment and national security.
Further, Secretary Slater oversaw the designation of the eleven proposed High Speed Rail Corridors across America and the institution of the Acela service by Amtrak along the Northeast Corridor. He played a leadership role in the Clinton Administration’s Partnership for a New Generation Vehicle Initiative, headed by Vice President Al Gore, along with other green economy initiatives championed by the Administration.
Previous to his tenure as Transportation Secretary, Mr. Slater served as Administrator of the Federal Highway Administration, where—as the Agency’s first African-American Administrator in its century-long history—he oversaw the development of an innovative financing program that resulted in hundreds of transportation projects being completed two to three years ahead of schedule with greater cost efficiencies.