WASHINGTON (Dec. 7, 2009)—David L. Strickland, senior Democratic counsel to the Senate Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety and Insurance of the Committee on Commerce, Science and Education, is the Obama administration's new nominee to serve as administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Strickland, a graduate of Harvard Law School, has served at the Senate Commerce Committee since August 2001. Among other legislation, he helped write the 2005 surface transportation bill and the 2007 energy bill, both of which contained crucial auto safety and fuel efficiency provisions.
“I am extremely pleased that President Obama has nominated David to be the head of NHTSA,” said Sen. John D. “Jay” Rockefeller IV, D-W. Va., who chairs the Senate Commerce Committee. “He is well-respected by the members of the Commerce Committee and all of the stakeholders who work with NHTSA.” Sen. Rockefeller will be in charge of the initial confirmation hearings for Strickland.
The Rubber Manufacturers Association also praised the choice of Strickland. “We have worked with him in the Senate Commerce Committee, and we've had very productive discussions with him,” said an RMA spokesman. “Given his experience in working on tire and auto industry issues, he would be a good choice, a wise choice, and we wish him a speedy confirmation.”
President Obama earlier nominated Charles A. Hurley, CEO of the highway safety group Mothers Against Drunk Driving, as NHTSA administrator. However, objections from environmentalists forced Hurley to withdraw.