The Star Democrat

Hogan appoints new secretarie­s of commerce, transporta­tion

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ANNAPOLIS — Gov. Larry Hogan has announced three appointmen­ts that will go into effect Jan. 11.

Former Maryland Secretary of Commerce Mike Gill has been named secretary of the Maryland Department of Commerce, succeeding Secretary Kelly Schulz.

Maryland Transporta­tion Authority Executive Director James F. Ports Jr. has been named secretary of the Maryland Department of Transporta­tion, succeeding Secretary Greg Slater.

William Pines, MDTA’s chief engineer, will succeed Ports as MDTA’s executive director.

“We’re excited to add new members of our Cabinet with a wealth of experience and a deep commitment to public service,” Hogan said in a statement. “Mike Gill helped lead our economic turnaround for the first four years of our administra­tion, and it is great to have him back to finish the job. Jim Ports has served in major transporta­tion roles at the federal, state, and local levels, and he is the right person to continue building on all of our record investment­s in both roads and transit. I also want to congratula­te Will Pines, a talented engineer who has spearheade­d some of our biggest projects, and is very deserving of the opportunit­y to lead MDTA. Greg Slater and Kelly Schulz have made countless contributi­ons to change Maryland for the better. We owe them a tremendous debt of gratitude for their service, and we wish them well in their future pursuits.”

Maryland Department of Commerce

Gill is chairman of Columbia-based Evergreen Advisors, which was his role prior to serving as Maryland’s secretary of commerce from 2015 to 2019. He has four decades of experience in business, which includes founding Hoyt Capital, an investment and advisory firm serving startups and growth companies. He was a member of the University System of Maryland Board of Regents from 2004 to 2009.

“After all the work we did in the first term to turn things around, it has been rewarding to observe the continued progress Maryland has made becoming one of the nation’s most business-friendly states,” Gill said. “When the governor asked me to come back, I jumped at the opportunit­y to once again lead the talented men and women at Commerce. I want to thank Kelly for the outstandin­g job she’s done, and we all wish her and her family well.”

“I am incredibly thankful to have had the opportunit­y to serve the Hogan administra­tion over these last seven years — working daily to improve the lives of Marylander­s has been an honor of a lifetime,” Schulz said. “While working with Gov. Hogan, as the secretary of labor and secretary of commerce, we’ve accomplish­ed a lot, from leading nationally recognized job training and apprentice­ship programs to becoming the most improved state for business in the entire nation. I thank Gov. Hogan for entrusting me with such great responsibi­lities and for allowing me to have the privilege to work with so many wonderful people throughout state government.”

Maryland Department of Transporta­tion

As MDTA’s executive director, Ports oversees all of the state’s toll facilities and the E-ZPass Maryland system. Prior to his appointmen­t as executive director, Ports served as MDOT’s deputy secretary under two administra­tions. In addition, he previously served as deputy administra­tor for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administra­tion, and chief executive officer for Harford County’s transit system.

Pines has served as MDTA’s chief engineer since 2019. He has contribute­d to significan­t regional endeavors such as the District Department of Transporta­tion’s selection committee for the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge Replacemen­t and an ongoing National Cooperativ­e Highway Research Program panel for the evaluation of suspension bridges.

“I am incredibly honored to have the trust of Gov. Hogan and the opportunit­y to lead the dedicated profession­als at the Maryland Department of Transporta­tion,” Ports said. “We will continue to deliver on all of the services that are part of Marylander­s’ daily lives, and the incredible infrastruc­ture progress that we’re making everywhere across the state. I want to personally thank Greg Slater for his friendship and his leadership.”

“Serving as the Maryland Secretary of Transporta­tion has been the most challengin­g and rewarding experience of my life and career,” Slater said. “I cannot thank Gov. Hogan, the men and women of MDOT, and the people we serve enough for the faith that they had in me in this important role at such a critical time. Through challenges and progress we continued to serve day and night, seven days a week.”

Slater has accepted an opportunit­y in the transporta­tion industry out of state.

 ?? PHOTO BY KATIE TABELING ?? Jim Ports, executive of the Maryland Transporta­tion Authority, was recently appointed to be the state’s Secretary of Transporta­tion by Gov. Larry Hogan, effective Jan. 11, 2022.
PHOTO BY KATIE TABELING Jim Ports, executive of the Maryland Transporta­tion Authority, was recently appointed to be the state’s Secretary of Transporta­tion by Gov. Larry Hogan, effective Jan. 11, 2022.

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