U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx announced today that Department of Transportation Chief of Staff Sarah Feinberg will serve as Acting Administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA). She succeeds Joseph C. Szabo who was appointed and confirmed as the agency’s twelfth Administrator is 2009. Szabo stepped down as the agency’s head last Friday.
“Sarah has been my partner and served as my closest advisor during her tenure as Chief of Staff at the U.S. Department of Transportation. With her ability to bring clarity, focus and direction to complex challenges, she has become a proven leader within our agency,” said Secretary Anthony Foxx. “Sarah has the right mix of experience and skills to adeptly lead the FRA as it continues its important work to ensure the safe, reliable and efficient movement of people and goods.”
Feinberg becomes the second woman to lead the agency since its founding in 1966.
Since 2013 Feinberg has served as the Chief of Staff for the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT), managing the agency’s ten modal departments, and spearheading the agency’s legislative, policy, and communications efforts. Feinberg provided strategic advice and counsel to the Secretary regarding operational and legislative initiatives across all modes of transportation, as well as leading the department’s efforts on its $302 billion surface transportation reauthorization plan, sent to the U.S. Congress last year.
During her time as Chief of Staff, Feinberg worked closely with Secretary Foxx and each agency in the Department to ensure that they are continuously raising the bar on safety. As Acting Administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration, Feinberg will work to strengthen the culture of safety across the railroad industry.
The FRA is the Nation’s chief safety regulator for the passenger and freight rail industries. The agency has a $1.6 billion budget and employs nearly 900 people in Washington, D.C. and eight regional offices across the country. It establishes and enforces safety rules for the rail industry as well as manages a $20 billion rail investment portfolio.