Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland and Transition Chair Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman appointed Feb. 12 Brown County Engineer James Beasley, as the director of the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT).
“Jim understands that an efficient and reliable transportation network contributes to and enhances economic growth,” Strickland said. “I am confident that he will not only be a tremendous leader in developing and maintaining safe roads for Ohioans, but will guide the department in a way that helps create jobs.
“I’ve known Jim for more than 30 years,” Strickland said. “And I know — without a doubt — that he has the character and integrity needed to manage this crucial department.”
Beasley will begin his duties March 5. His appointment marks Strickland’s 17th cabinet appointment.
“ODOT is critical to Ohio’s future, connecting our cities, counties, businesses and citizens to the world, and we’ve found someone who understands this complex system and can be a great team player as Governor Strickland’s cabinet gets working to turn around Ohio,” Mayor Coleman said.
Beasley has served as Brown County engineer since 1980. In this role, he has supervised all public improvements and maintenance of the county’s highway system, including all safety projects, and the design, construction and maintenance of bridges, roads and culverts.
Prior to becoming Brown County engineer, Beasley worked as the county’s deputy engineer from 1975 to 1979. He served as the sole proprietor of Beasley Engineer and Surveying from 1975 to 1984 and worked for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources from 1973 to 1975.
Beasley has served two separate terms as vice chair and chair of the District 15 Ohio Public Works Committee. He has been awarded a life membership by the Township Trustees Association of Brown County and has received an Award of Merit for Outstanding Accomplishments in Resource Conservation from the Brown County Soil and Water Conservation District. In 2000, he was recognized by ODOT for Covered Bridge Preservation.
“I am eager to work with our state’s various regions and cities to ensure that all Ohioans have access to a quality, statewide transportation system,” Beasley said. “This cooperation is absolutely necessary to ensure that economic development and job creation in every part of the state remain key priorities of the Ohio Department of Transportation.”
The Ohio Department of Transportation oversees Ohio’s $2.1 billion annual transportation program. The department is responsible for designing, building and maintaining Ohio’s approximately 20,000 mi. of state, U.S. and interstate highways. Ohio has the second largest inventory of bridges, the fourth largest interstate highway system and the 10th largest highway system in the nation.
++ODOT also helps coordinate and develop Ohio’s public transportation and aviation programs. These include 56 public transit systems and nearly 200 public airports.
This appointment is subject to the advice and consent of the Ohio Senate.