The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) today named Therese W. McMillan as its Deputy Administrator, the number two job at FTA. McMillan, who has been a member of the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) staff since 1984 and has served as the Commission’s Deputy Executive Director for Policy since 2001, will assume her new post in Washington, D.C., on June 30.
“The chance to work for the Obama Administration as part of the FTA is unbelievably exciting,” said McMillan. “I am prepared to take on this new responsibility because of the rich and unparalleled experience that has been afforded me in my career at MTC. I look forward to a great new relationship with FTA in Washington.”
McMillan led the review of the MTC’s public involvement program, including refinement of Federal Title VI and Environmental Justice Outreach procedures. She served as Chair of the California Coalition of Regional Transportation Planning Agencies for fiscal years 1998 and 1999, vice-chair in 1997 and 1998 and received a Resolution of Commendation from the California Transportation Commission for that service in 1999. McMillan joins FTA Chief Peter Rogoff in leading a staff of more than 500 in Washington, D.C., and 10 regional offices around the United States, and managing an annual budget of approximately $10 billion plus $8.4 billion in Recovery Act funds.
“Ms. McMillan brings real-world experience and a history of achievement to FTA," said Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "She will be a valuable asset to the federal public transportation program and the Department’s senior management team.”
FTA's Rogoff said, “I couldn’t be more thrilled to bring Therese onto the FTA leadership team. Her many years of experience delivering projects to the people of the Bay Area can now be brought to bear on the transportation challenges we face across America. Therese’s hands-on experience working across transportation modes will enable her to deliver on the President’s vision for transportation investments that truly improve the quality of life of all citizens.”
MTC Executive Director Steve Heminger praised his deputy, “Therese has been a leader in charting a clear regional policy direction that combines the Commission’s planning and financing missions. Her departure is a big loss for MTC but a huge win for the FTA.”
Heminger himself was rumored to be on the shortlist for the USDOT Secretary LaHood's position, even garnering a letter of support from the Califonia legislative delegation. In an interview not long after LaHood was picked for the top transportation post, Heminger said he was happy to remain at one of the "most progressive" metropolitan planning organizations in the US. Perhaps now the MTC will have a bit more sway in DC.