June 18, 2013 | Bikeportland.org-- The City of Portland has selected Leah Treat to be the new Director of the Bureau of Transportation (PBOT). Treat is currently the Managing Deputy Commissioner at the Chicago Department of Transportation where she serves under Chicago's Transportation Commissioner Gabe Klein.
In a statement released this morning, PBOT Commissioner Steve Novick said, "Portland needs a transportation leader who has the budget management background to help us address our deficit in basic street maintenance and who understands the value of sustainable modes such as biking and walking. We know we have found the right person for PBOT in Leah Treat and we are excited to have her join us in Portland."
Treat has been in government service her entire 17-year career. Her background is in budgeting and finance and the majority of her past positions have been focused on "standing up organizations financially." Treat and Klein first worked together in Washington D.C. where she was Klein's deputy director of finance and managed D.C. over $1 billion transportation budget. Prior to working in D.C. Treat served in advisory roles for the governor and Legislature of New Mexico.
I met Treat last month as part of the candidate selection process. During conversations at that event, Treat described her transition from budget wonk to transportation wonk: "As I worked with Gabe I became more exposed to the creative side of transportation and used my financial skills to get involved with some really fun and creative projects that has created a passion for me in transportation outside of finance."
In D.C. Treat worked on the roll-out of Capital Bikeshare (the nation's most successful bikeshare system), open streets and other placemaking programs. Those initiatives gained considerable national attention and Treat and Klein were eventually lured from D.C. to Chicago by Mayor Rahm Emanuel where Treat says READ FULL ARTICLE