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Monday, April 29, 2013

Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx Nominated As New Secretary of Transporta​tion

Mayor of Charlotte, North Carolina, Anthony Foxx has some big shoes to fill.

The newly nominated Secretary of Transportation will succeed the outgoing transportation secretary, Ray LaHood.

During today's nomination the president called LaHood possibly the "best Secretary of Transportation that the nation's ever had."

Anthony Foxx (middle) nominated as new Secretary of Transportation.  Getty photo.

LaHood, a native of Illinois, has held the position since 2009.

"From the day that he was sworn in, Ray has fought tirelessly to rebuild America’s infrastructure creating good jobs that strengthen our economy and allow us to better compete in the global economy", said Obama. 

"Over the past four years, thanks to Ray's leadership, we’ve built or improved more than 350,000 miles of road enough to circle the world more than 14 times.  We’ve upgraded more than 6,000 miles of rail  enough to go coast to coast and back.  We’ve repaired or replaced more than 20,000 bridges, and helped put tens of thousands of construction workers back on the job.  And that’s all due in no small part to Ray LaHood's leadership."

Mayor Foxx, having also held his position as mayor since 2009, is responsible for expanding the city's international airport, as well as extending the city’s light rail system; accomplishments that bode well with the president, who called Foxx his "friend".

"I know Anthony’s experience will make him an outstanding Transportation Secretary.  He’s got the respect of his peers, mayors and governors all across the country." 

Foxx was Charlotte's youngest mayor.  Today's official announcement comes on the heels of Foxx's 43rd birthday which he will celebrate tomorrow, April 29th. 

The nomination of Foxx helps improve the lack of diversity that is needed in the Obama administration.   There are only two people of color on the president's current Cabinet, Presidential Advisor Valerie Jarrett and Department of Justice's Attorney General, Eric Holder.

Obama has come under fire from members of the media who insist more diversity is needed.

Foxx is married with two children - both present during today's announcement.  Also in attendance was the wife of Foxx, Samara Ryder, an attorney, along with his grandmother who worked in the White House in the Truman administration.

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UPDATE:  May 1st , 2013 -  On Wednesday, President Obama announced his intent to nominate Rep. Mel Watt (D-N.C.) to direct the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) which administers or has oversight for the FHA, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac.

Melvin Luther "Mel" Watt (born August 26, 1945) is a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives. He has served North Carolina's 12th congressional district since 1993. An attorney from Charlotte, North Carolina, Watt previously served one term as a state Senator and served as campaign manager for former Charlotte Mayor Harvey Gantt.*

That makes two African Americans added to the president's staff, amazingly, in one week.

Both Foxx and Watts have served North Carolina.

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