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Senate transportation committee endorses Miller's STB nomination

The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation has unanimously backed President Barack Obama's nomination of Debra Miller as a Surface Transportation Board (STB) member.

She would serve a term expiring on Dec. 31, 2017. Obama nominated her in September 2013 to replace STB Commissioner Francis Mulvey, whose term expired. The STB's three members, who are appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate, serve a five-year term.

Miller is a senior associate at transportation consulting firm Cambridge Systematics Inc. The company's clients include the Federal Transit Administration, Amtrak, MTA Long Island Rail Road, CSX Corp., Norfolk Southern Corp. and 44 state transportation agencies.

She previously served as secretary of transportation for Kansas from 2003 to 2012, the state's first female and longest-serving transportation secretary. Prior to that, Miller was director of planning and development at the Kansas Department of Transportation and a planner at HNTB Infrastructure Solutions.

Officials at rail shipper group Consumers United for Rail Equity (CURE) welcomed the Senate committee's support of Miller's nomination.

"She's had a distinguished career and we look forward to working with her as a new commissioner of the STB," said CURE President Steve Sharp in a press release. "We also hope the full Senate will confirm her as soon as possible to prevent a void in the critical role the STB plays in ensuring that rail-dependent shippers benefit from healthy competition within the freight-rail industry."

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 1/15/2014