Former Iowa DOT Director Trombino eyed by Trump for federal highway position

Iowa Department of Transportation Director, Paul Trombino III, gives his keynote address during the 30th Annual Marion Economic Development Company Business Lunch at the Cedar Rapids Marriott in Cedar Rapids on Wednesday, March 11, 2015. (Michael Noble Jr./The Gazette)
Iowa Department of Transportation Director, Paul Trombino III, gives his keynote address during the 30th Annual Marion Economic Development Company Business Lunch at the Cedar Rapids Marriott in Cedar Rapids on Wednesday, March 11, 2015. (Michael Noble Jr./The Gazette)

President Donald Trump plans to name Paul Trombino II, former director of the Iowa Department of Transportation, to lead the Federal Highway Administration.

A White House news release announced Trump’s intentions to nominate Trombino, who headed the DOT from 2011 to 2016.

Trombino, 51, of Johnston, resigned from his Iowa post in November. He did not immediately return calls seeking comment Monday,

The appointment requires approval by the U.S. Senate.

U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, a member of the Environmental Public Works Committee, endorsed Trombino in a Monday statement that noted a strong and efficient infrastructure is vital to the nation’s economy.

“Paul Trombino understands this and is a committed public servant with more than 20 years of experience in updating our infrastructure at the local and statewide level,” Ernst said. “As we move ahead on an infrastructure plan, we must ensure that it addresses fixes to roads, bridges, and highways, and also looks at dam and levee infrastructure.

“I look forward to working with Paul on a plan that includes these transportation needs of rural America, and not just major cities.”

As Iowa DOT director, Trombino was responsible for the planning, design, construction and operation of 9,400 miles of highways, 4,300 bridges, programs for transit, rail, aviation and motor vehicles, the White House release said.

A Monday statement from Gov. Kim Reynold’s office also touted Trombino’s abilities.

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“Paul Trombino has a proven track record of being an innovative leader who isn’t afraid to solve problems by looking through a new lens,” Reynolds said.

Trombino also served as the 2015-16 president of the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials and was vice chairman of the Transportation Research Board Executive Committee in 2016.

After resigning from the Iowa DOT, Trombino was named president of McClure Engineering Co, of Clive, which provides engineering services to clients in the Midwest. A representative with McClure confirmed Monday that Trombino was still with the company.

Trombino worked for the Wisconsin Department of Transportation before coming to Iowa. He holds degrees in civil engineering and economics from the University of Wisconsin.

The Federal Highway Administration, an agency within the U.S. Department of Transportation, supports state and local governments with design, construction and maintenance of the federal highway system.

The Iowa DOT employs more than 2,600 people. The Federal Highway Administration had around 2,800 employees in 2014.

l Comments: (319) 339-3175; mitchell.schmidt@thegazette.com

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