The White House announced on Thursday that President Barack Obama will nominate two lawyers with ties to the Boston-area for seats on the board of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority — the agency charged with overseeing construction of the $5.6 billion Dulles Rail extension.

William Shaw McDermott is a partner at K&L Gates. McDermott would replace Robert Clarke Brown.

Nina Mitchell Wells served as New Jersey secretary of state from 1998 to 2004. Wells would take the seat that had been held by Charles D. Snelling, who died earlier this year.

If confirmed by the Senate, McDermott and Wells will join a 13-member board working to remake its image in the wake of reports of lavish spending and insider dealing.

Ray LaHood, the nation’s top transportation official, recently labeled the board “dysfunctional.”

In addition to the rail project, MWAA oversees operations at Reagan National and Dulles International airports as well as the Dulles Toll Road. Its board includes representatives from the District, Maryland,Virginia and the federal government.