Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx speaking at the 2012 Democratic National Convention.
Photo credit: U.S Department of Transportation
Anthony Foxx, the young mayor of Charlotte, N.C., has been unanimously confirmed to be the new Secretary of Transportation by the U.S. Senate.
Foxx, 42, is considered a charismatic rising figure in the Democratic party and was a staunch and active campaigner for President Barack Obama in North Carolina, including playing host to the Democratic National Convention.
Foxx replaces outgoing Secretary Ray LaHood, who was Republican Congressman before heading the DOT, but then became a close partner with Obama on ambitious policies like extending the nation's high-speed rail network and promoting infrastructure investment. Above all though, LaHood championed safety launching a campaign against distracted driving, distraction.gov.
Foxx is expected to continue in the vein of LaHood. He told the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee that safety would be his top priority at a nomination hearing a month ago.
His short tenure as mayor, and his professional background, suggest he will also carry on LaHood's fondness for rail and transit. As mayor, Foxx led the launch of a streetcar system and a light rail extension for Charlotte. He has also unveiled a pilot program for electric vehicle charging stations and was even employed by an eco-friendly bus company.
Foxx has served at as a Justice Department attorney and a Democratic aide to the House Judiciary Committee.