The Future of Transportation of Minnesota
The expansion of light rail in the Twin Cities is not the only transportation project in store for our great state. Charles Zelle, the Minnesota Commissioner of Transportation, and the Chair of the Metropolitan Council, Susan Haigh, will discuss the vision for the future of transportation in Minnesota.
Charles Zelle was appointed Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Transportation on Dec. 15, 2012 by Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton. He began the job on Jan. 15, 2013. Zelle came to MnDOT from Jefferson Lines, an intercity bus company with routes in 13 heartland states from Minnesota to Texas. He worked there for more than 20 years, and served as President and Chief Executive Officer. Zelle has been recognized for his work in transportation policy as a recipient of the George Rucker Award by the Community Transportation Association in 2009 and the Ray L. Lappegaard Distinguished Service Award by Center of Transportation Studies in 2012. Born and raised in St. Paul, Zelle received a BA from Bates College and a MBA from the Yale School of Management.
Susan Haigh was appointed chair of the Metropolitan Council by Gov. Mark Dayton in January 2011. She is the 13th chair of the Council since its creation by the Legislature in 1967. She previously served as a Ramsey County commissioner from 1995 to 2005, chief deputy Ramsey County attorney from 1982 to 1994, assistant Dakota County attorney from 1979 to 1982 and as a staff lawyer of the Metropolitan Council from 1977 to 1979. Haigh brings to the job an extensive background in government and community service. As a county commissioner, Haigh served on the metro counties’ Light Rail Joint Powers Board and was an early advocate of the Central Corridor LRT line. She also was a leader on solid waste management issues. Haigh holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Macalester College and a law degree from William Mitchell College of Law.