Messages from Leadership

Anthony Foxx

Anthony Foxx

U.S. Department of Transportation

As U.S. Secretary of Transportation, Foxx leads an agency with more than 55,000 employees and a $70 billion budget that oversees air, maritime, and surface transportation. His primary goal is to ensure that America maintains the safest, most efficient transportation system in the world.

Foxx joined the U.S. Department of Transportation after serving as the mayor of Charlotte, North Carolina, from 2009 to 2013. During that time, he made efficient and innovative transportation investments the centerpiece of Charlotte's job creation and economic recovery efforts. These investments included extending the LYNX light rail system, the largest capital project ever undertaken by the city, which will build new roads, bridges, transit as well as bicycle and pedestrian facilities; expanding Charlotte-Douglas International Airport, the sixth busiest airport in the world; working with North Carolina Governor Beverly Perdue to accelerate the I-485 outer belt loop using a creative design-build-finance approach, the first major project of its kind in North Carolina; and starting the Charlotte Streetcar project.

Prior to being elected mayor, Foxx served two terms on the Charlotte City Council as an At-Large Representative. As a Council Member, Foxx chaired the Transportation Committee, where he helped shepherd the largest transportation bond package in the city’s history, enabling Charlotte to take advantage of record low interest rates and favorable construction pricing to stretch city dollars beyond initial projections. Foxx also chaired the Mecklenburg-Union Metropolitan Planning Organization.

Foxx is an attorney and has spent much of his career in private practice. He also worked as a law clerk for the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, a trial attorney for the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, and staff counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary.

Foxx received a law degree from New York University’s School of Law as a Root-Tilden Scholar, the University’s prestigious public service scholarship. He earned a bachelor’s degree in History from Davidson College.

Foxx and his wife, Samara, have two children, Hillary and Zachary.

Manson K. Brown, Vice Admiral USCG (Retired), P.E.

Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Environmental Observation and Prediction

It is my sincere pleasure to take over as the Chair of the Coordinating Board of the US Committee on the Marine Transportation System (CMTS) from Dr. Holly Bamford. After 34 years in the Coast Guard, I am keenly aware of the importance and value of the Marine Transportation System (MTS) to our National economy. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) role in ensuring the safety and efficiency of maritime commerce dates to the establishment of the Survey of the Coast by Thomas Jefferson in 1807. Our organization is committed to ensuring protection of the environment while promoting economic growth.

The CMTS Interagency Partnership is working to ensure that this system continues to meet the present and future needs of our Nation. It is an interagency policy-coordinating committee charged with assessing the adequacy of the MTS; promoting integration of the MTS with other modes of transportation and the marine environment; and coordinating, improving the coordination of, and making recommendations with regard to Federal policies that impact the system. This interagency collaboration has resulted in a safer, more secure, environmentally friendly, and efficient MTS.

The Nation’s MTS is a critical component of the Nation’s supply chain and a vital lifeline for the US economy, supporting millions of American jobs. Today, the MTS faces challenges that include a changing climate, and increased port congestion and infrastructure needs, accompanied by a higher demand for safe and efficient movement of people and goods. At the same time, rapidly changing conditions in the Arctic present new opportunities and potential environmental threats as marine transportation continues to increase in this region. The CMTS is a critical link to ensure that Federal agencies responsible for marine transportation policies are coordinated and responsive to emerging needs.

I look forward to continuing the US Department of Commerce’s leadership on the CMTS and continuing to develop strategies that support the system’s vitality, productivity, and safety for our Nation. This includes focusing on local, State, regional, and Federal efforts to improve the efficiency of the supply chain, making relevant Federal data and information available to those who need it to improve maritime commerce, and increasing awareness in the MTS community of Federal programs that provide funding to address needs of the MTS.

VADM Manson K. Brown was sworn in as the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Environmental Observation and Prediction on March 18, 2015. He strategically drives Administration policy, programming, and investments for all NOAA observing systems, including in situ instruments and satellites, and the process of converting observations to predictions for environmental threats related to weather, climate, water, oceans, and space weather. He serves as NOAA Deputy Administrator and chair of NOAA’s Observing Systems Council.

A native of Washington, DC, he is the son of public servants. At the age of 17, he entered military service as a cadet at the US Coast Guard Academy. His journey with the Coast Guard spanned 40 years, propelling him to the rank of Vice Admiral. He has commanded operations at every level, culminating as commander of Pacific Area in San Francisco, where he oversaw all Coast Guard operational activities throughout the Pacific Rim. Building on his technical competence as a registered professional civil engineer, his last assignment on active duty was as Deputy Commandant for Mission Support in Washington, DC, where he oversaw all aspects of human resources, engineering, information technology, acquisition, and logistics support for Coast Guard operations and people throughout the globe.

His other Coast Guard assignments ranged from duty as an engineering officer aboard the icebreaker Glacier during Arctic and Antarctic deployments to working as a Military Assistant to the US Secretary of Transportation (DOT). After the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the Honorable Norman Y. Mineta temporarily assigned him as the DOT’s Deputy Chief of Staff for six months. In 2004, he was asked to fill a key leadership gap in Iraq as the Senior Advisor for Transportation for the Coalition Provisional Authority, where he oversaw restoration of Iraq’s transportation systems, including major ports.

He holds Master of Science degrees in civil engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and in national resources strategy from the National Defense University.

Helen Brohl

Helen Brohl

Executive Director
U.S. Committee on the Marine Transportation System

In July 2015, the modern CMTS celebrated ten years of operation! It has been my pleasure to have originated the position of Executive Director and to have worked with a cadre of extraordinary Federal leaders and subject matter experts. In the early years, we spent a lot of time establishing day-to-day operations and working to institutionalize the value of Federal agency participation in support of the Marine Transportation System (MTS). Developing and adopting the first-ever National Strategy for the Marine Transportation System in 2008 was a significant Partnership milestone that set the stage for many other meaningful agreements and activities. Other accomplishments have included the Strategic Action Plan for Research and Development in the Marine Transportation System, the e-Navigation Strategic Action Plan, and the U.S. Arctic Marine Transportation System recommendation reports to the White House, including the 2015 “Ten Year Projection of Maritime Activity in the U.S. Arctic.”

The CMTS and the Transportation Research Board have co-sponsored three MTS research and development conferences. We hope the MTS stakeholders will join for the next conference, which will held in June 2016. We were extremely pleased and honored to be recognized by the National Economic Council for the CMTS Federal Funding Handbook: Marine Transportation System Infrastructure. This report was recently updated with more than 80 different Federal funding opportunities for the MTS and will support the White House Build America Initiative.

Please visit the CMTS site often for new and improved products and share your ideas for ways in which we can meet your Federal-related interests.

The CMTS is an extraordinary Federal interagency partnership of over 25 active members, including White House offices, and as the organization grows in value, so does its membership. We remain indebted to the dedicated agency members who provide expertise and resources to the Executive Secretariat and CMTS activities.

The CMTS is a Federal interagency coordinating committee directed by Congress and charter to improve the coordination of and make recommendations with regard to Federal policies that impact the MTS.