Rodney E. Slater, a former U.S. Secretary of Transportation, is chair of MITRE’s Board of Trustees. As a partner at Squire Patton Boggs, a Washington-based legal firm, he is co-chair of the organization's transportation, shipping, and logistics practice. Slater focuses on many of the policy and transportation objectives set under his leadership at the Department of Transportation during President Bill Clinton’s administration. These include aviation competition and congestion mitigation, maritime initiatives, high-speed rail corridor development, and overall transportation safety and funding.
Under Slater’s leadership, the federal transportation budget doubled, and the scope and definition of the department expanded to include a focus on safety, mobility and access, economic development and trade, the environment, and national security. From 1993 to 1997, Slater served as director of the Federal Highway Administration. The Transportation Research Board (TRB) awarded Slater its 2021 Frank Turner Medal for Lifetime Achievement.
Prior to his work at the federal level, Slater was the director of government relations for Arkansas State University and held several state positions under then-Gov. Bill Clinton. In addition, Slater served as secretary-treasurer of the Arkansas Bar Association, was a special liaison to the Martin Luther King, Jr., Federal Holiday Commission, and held a seat on the Arkansas State Highway Commission.
Slater chairs the board of the Squire Patton Boggs Foundation and sits on the boards of Verizon Communications, EVgo, and Stagwell Global. In addition, he is a founding partner of the Washington DC Nationals Baseball team and chair emeritus of the Washington DC Nationals Youth Baseball Academy. Slater is also a member of the United Way Worldwide and a Trustee of the National Urban League.
Slater earned his bachelor’s degree at Eastern Michigan University in 1977 and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Arkansas in 1980. He holds a license to practice law in Arkansas and the District of Columbia.