The Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission today elected Grace Nichols, St. Charles, as its chair for a one-year term. The former chair, Rudy Farber, Neosho, will serve as vice-chair.
Nichols has served on the commission since March of 2008. Farber was appointed to the commission in March 2007.
The six-member bipartisan commission governs the Missouri Department of Transportation, the agency responsible for building and maintaining the state highway system and supporting other transportation modes in Missouri.
"My focus will be on supporting the department in its efforts to provide a high level of service while getting smaller and curbing services, necessitated by reduced funding levels from the gasoline tax and federal programs," Nichols said. "We must show Missourians that transportation is a personal issue that affects them every day and is in need of additional funding."
Until her appointment to the commission, Nichols was a Senior Circuit Judge in St. Charles County and was also mayor of St. Charles for two terms - elected in 1987 and again in 1991. Prior to her public service, she spent many years in private law practice, in addition to active involvement in business, civic and arts groups.
Farber is chairman of the board of Community Bank & Trust in Neosho.
Other commission members are David Gach, St. Joseph; Joe Carmichael, Springfield; Stephen Miller, Kansas City and Kenneth Suelthaus, St. Louis.
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