The White House announced late on Feb. 13 that President Donald Trump intends to nominate former Virginia Republican Congresswoman Thelma Drake to be Federal Transit Administrator.
Drake is also a former member of the Virginia House of Delegates and a former director of the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation (DRPT). She is currently Assistant Director of Public Works – Transportation for the City of Norfolk, Va.
“While Director of DRPT, Drake helped implement new processes and performance metrics that streamlined DRPT’s operations and enhanced accountability for its projects,” the White House said. “Her work in Virginia included assignments with the Washington Area Metropolitan Transit Authority (WMATA) and the Virginia Railway Express. A former member of the Virginia Commonwealth Transportation Board, she served on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee in Congress and the Transportation Committee in the Virginia House of Delegates.”
Drake was a realtor prior to her election in 1996 to the Virginia House of Delegates. She was elected to Congress in 2004 and served two terms. The Virginia Pilot newspaper credits her with helping to restore Amtrak service to Norfolk when she was DRPT Director from 2010-2013.
The FTA has not had a confirmed administrator since January 2014. The agency oversees 3,000 transit agencies nationwide and has 550 employees.
With reporting by Contributing Editor Frank N. Wilner in Washington.