Thursday, April 12, 2018

D.C. staff shuffle: FRA, House T&I Committee and NTSB

Written by  Mischa Wanek-Libman, editor and Stuart Chirls, senior editor, Railway Age
Jennifer Homendy, left, has been nominated to the NTSB; Matt Sturges, right, has been named FRA deputy administrator. Jennifer Homendy, left, has been nominated to the NTSB; Matt Sturges, right, has been named FRA deputy administrator.

People with expertise in transportation related roles have been shifting agencies and positions this week with major job changes occurring among the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee and a nomination to the National Transportation Safety Board.


House T&I Committee Staff Director Matt Sturges will become FRA deputy administrator effective Monday, April 16. Sturges will fill the role vacated by Heath Hall, who resigned following allegations he was working a second job as a public relations consultant.

"Matt joined the Transportation and Infrastructure staff when I became chairman in 2013, and he has been instrumental in the passage of every major piece of committee legislation over the last three congresses," T&I Committee Chairman Bill Shuster said. "I want to thank Matt for his dedication to the committee and the House of Representatives and for his steady hand at the wheel in our work to improve America's infrastructure."

Sturges served as the committee's deputy staff director between September 2014 and September 2016, when he was named staff director.

Additionally, Chris Vieson has been promoted to the position of staff director for the committee and Geoff Gosselin has been named the deputy staff director.

Chairman Shuster added, "Chris and Geoff are extremely knowledgeable about both transportation policy and the intricacies of legislating."

In nominations news, President Trump announced his intention to nominate Jennifer L. Homendy to be a member of the National Transportation Safety Board. The nomination is for the remainder of a five-year term that is set to expire on Dec. 31, 2019.

Homendy, of Virginia, currently serves as Democratic Staff Director of the Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials for the House T&I Committee, a position she has held since 2004. She advises members of Congress on legislation involving railroads, the safety of oil and natural gas pipelines and the transportation of hazardous materials.