U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Secretary Ray LaHood announced his retirement on Jan. 29, a move expected by many in the transportation industry.
In a letter to DOT employees, LaHood said he would stay on until President Obama names a successor, putting an end to the cat-and-mouse game he has played with the media for months.
“I’ve told President Obama, and I’ve told many of you, that this is the best job I’ve ever had,” LaHood wrote.
Many prominent officials in the transportation sector could be LaHood’s successor. Those rumored to be under consideration include Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who would bolster the administration’s Hispanic credentials, and NTSB Chairwoman Debbie Hersman, who would give him a female cabinet pick. Other long-shot candidates include former Rep. Jim Oberstar (D-Minn.).
LaHood oversaw several significant rulemakings, including those stemming from an FAA reauthorization earlier this year, and a 2010 aviation safety bill that mandated many new aviation safety and consumer protections.