The U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration today announced the appointment of a new chairman, vice chairman and five additional members to its Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee (MCSAC).
"At DOT, safety is our highest priority," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "Working with partners who provide us with greater knowledge, experience and ideas will only help us make our nation's highways even safer."
Stephen C. Owings is the first representative from the safety advocacy community to be named chairman of the MCSAC. Owings and his wife, Susan, founded Road Safe America in 2003 in honor of their son, Cullum, who was tragically killed in 2002 when struck by a tractor trailer. Owings replaces David Parker of Great West Casualty Co. as chairman. Parker has served as MCSAC chairman since its inception in 2007.
Lt. Col. Scott G. Hernandez of the Colorado State Patrol was appointed vice chairman. Hernandez is the interim chief of the Colorado State Patrol and will become MCSAC chairman upon the conclusion of Owings' two-year term.
Established by Congress in 2006, the MCSAC is charged with providing information, advice and recommendations to FMCSA on safety programs and regulations for large trucks and commercial buses. The MCSAC is composed of stakeholders from the motor carrier safety advocacy, safety enforcement, labor and industry communities.
"We welcome our new MCSAC members and look forward to their contributions that will help FMCSA raise the bar for carriers to enter the industry, maintain high safety standards to remain in the industry, and remove high risk carriers and drivers from our roadways," said FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro.
The five new MCSAC members who will begin their terms on April 1, 2013, are:
Gary Catapano, senior vice president of safety, First Student, Inc.
Bruce Hamilton, president, Amalgamated Transit Union, Local 1700
Robert Mills, police officer, Fort Worth (TX) Police Department
Donald Osterberg, senior vice president of safety and security, Schneider National, Inc.
Tami Friedrich Trakh, board member, Citizens for Reliable and Safe Highways (CRASH)
Jennifer Tierney, board member, CRASH, (Voting Alternate Member)
Additionally, Administrator Ferro reappointed ten members to the committee. They are:
LaMont Byrd, director of health and safety, International Brotherhood of Teamsters
Norman (Bill) Dofflemyer, captain, Maryland State Police
Scott Hernandez, interim chief, Colorado State Patrol
John Lannen, executive director, Truck Safety Coalition
Jane Mathis, member, board of directors, Parents Against Tired Truckers (P.A.T.T.)
Stephen C. Owings, president, Road Safe America
Pete Pantuso, president and chief executive officer, American Bus Association
David Parker, senior legal counsel, Great West Casualty Co.
Danny Schnautz, operations manager, Clark Freight Lines, Inc.
Todd Spencer, executive vice president, Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association
With these appointments, the committee now has its full complement of 20 members.
Administrator Ferro thanked outgoing member Bob Petrancosta of Con-Way Freight for his seven years of contributions to the MCSAC. Petrancosta will remain a member of the MCSAC's Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) Subcommittee.
The next MCSAC meeting is scheduled for April 8-10, 2013, at the Hilton Alexandria Old Town, 1767 King Street, Alexandria, Va.
The MCSAC members are chosen through application to the agency. They are selected from among individuals who are not employees of FMCSA and who are specially qualified to serve on the committee based on their education, training, or experience. For more information about FMCSA's Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee, including a complete summary of all its members, please visit http://mcsac.fmcsa.dot.gov.