The Washington Post

Head of Md. highway administration to retire

Neil J. Pedersen, a prominent transportation official in Maryland who gained national recognition during his career, announced Wednesday that he will retire at the end of the month.

Pedersen, 59, the administrator of the Maryland State Highway Administration, will end a 30-year career in state government on June 30. He has led the State Highway Administration for more than eight years.

“Legislators, community groups, citizens and stakeholders came to know and respect Neil during his long career at SHA,” said Maryland Transportation Secretary Beverly Swaim-Staley in a statement. “He has a unique ability to get people in a room, talk to them, understand their concerns and then work with them to develop consensus and solutions. . . People appreciated it and he got things done.”

Pedersen became nationally recognized for his work overseeing the engineering and construction of the Woodrow Wilson Bridge and the Intercounty Connector, two of the largest highway projects in Maryland’s history.

This year, Pedersen served as chair of the Executive Committee of the National Academy of Sciences Transportation Research Board. He is a past recipient of the Thomas McDonald award from the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, the organization’s highest award for service leadership and vision.

Though Pedersen is stepping down as administrator, he will continue to serve as an advisor for the ICC construction project.

Deputy Transportation Secretary Darrell B. Mobley will serve as interim administrator until a permanent one is appointed.

Ovetta Wiggins covers Maryland state politics in Annapolis.

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