New S.C. Department of Transportation Director Janet Oakley speaks to reporters after Gov.
Janet P. Oakley
At a State House press conference, Haley named Janet Oakley, a federal transportation policy expert with more than 30 years of experience, to head the S.C. Department of Transportation, overseeing the states decaying road system and $29 billion in needed road repairs.
For nearly 15 years, Oakley, 62, has been the director of policy and government relations for the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, a membership organization for state transportation departments.
In that role, Oakley has managed national transportation policy development on behalf of state transportation departments while also directing several other association programs.
I can bring to South Carolina a breadth of experience and depth of knowledge to help all the regions of the state, Oakley
said in brief remarks.
Now a resident of Friendship, Md., Oakleys work for the transportation officials association has put her
in touch with transportation chiefs in states across the nation.
Haley said Oakley
has seen what works and what does not in transportation policy.
Previously, Oakley spent six years as director of the Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations, and another six years with the National Association of Regional Councils as director of transportation and governmental affairs.
Earlier in her career, Oakley worked as a local, state and federal transportation planner, a budget analyst for a U.S. House of Representatives transportation subcommittee, and an assistant in the Kentucky transportation department.
She has a masters degree in planning from Eastern Kentucky University.
With the approval of the state Senate, Oakley will fill the position left vacant when former Transportation Secretary Robert St. Onge resigned in January after a drunken-driving arrest.
Haleys spokesman, Doug Mayer, said the governor will ask that Oakley receive the same salary at St. Onge, which was $156,220, according to the Transportation Department.
, who has family in the Upstate, said she
husband built a house on Edisto Island about two years ago with plans to retire there in a couple of years.
I was able with this opportunity to speed up this move to South Carolina, which I am delighted to do, Oakley