TU alumnus Greg Slater ’97 named Maryland transportation secretary

The appointment by Governor Larry Hogan follows more than 20 years with the Maryland Department of Transportation

By Rebecca Kirkman on February 18, 2020

Greg Slater on campus

In late 2019, Governor Larry Hogan named Towson University geography alumnus Greg Slater ’97 secretary of the Maryland Department of Transportation. Slater assumed the role on January 10.

Previously, he served as administrator of the State Highway Administration, a role in which he spearheaded the Traffic Relief Plan, the largest public-private partnership project in the world. His tenure with MDOT exceeds 20 years.

“Greg Slater has committed his career to public service, and has earned a reputation around the country as an innovator who is tireless and relentless about transportation solutions,” said Governor Hogan in a press release. “With his decades of experience, Greg is sure to build on our balanced approach to infrastructure, including record investment in transit, as leader of the Maryland Department of Transportation.”

Slater started out at TU as a business major, but soon switched to geography and environmental planning, a choice that would eventually propel him to leadership in Maryland’s transportation departments.

“Early on I thought differently from everyone else,” he told TU in 2017, after being named administrator of the State Highway Administration. “I came at things from a different angle.” But it was always systems—how they operated and how they can be improved—that fascinated him.

Two geography classes would build on that appeal; the first with Professor John “Jay” Morgan combined mapping and technology. Another examined how railroad networks shaped the country’s development.

Slater follows Pete Rahn in the role, who has led DOT since Governor Hogan took office in 2015.

“The work we do at the Maryland Department of Transportation affects the lives and livelihoods of each of our citizens,” Slater said in a statement, “and we strive every day to operate in a spirit of trust and accountability.”

This story is one of several related to President Kim Schatzel’s priorities for Towson University: TU Matters to Maryland.