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Anthony Foxx

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Anthony Foxx
17th United States Secretary of Transportation
In office
July 2, 2013 – January 20, 2017
PresidentBarack Obama
DeputyJohn Porcari
Victor Mendez
Preceded byRay LaHood
Succeeded byElaine Chao
54th Mayor of Charlotte
In office
December 7, 2009 – July 1, 2013
Preceded byPat McCrory
Succeeded byPatsy Kinsey
Personal details
Anthony Renard Foxx

(1971-04-30) April 30, 1971 (age 53)
Charlotte, North Carolina, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Samara Ryder
(m. 2001)
EducationDavidson College (BA)
New York University (JD)

Anthony Renard Foxx (born April 30, 1971) is an American lawyer and politician who served as the United States Secretary of Transportation from 2013 to 2017. A member of the Democratic Party, Foxx had previously served as Mayor of Charlotte, North Carolina from 2009 to 2013.[1] First elected to the Charlotte City Council in 2005, his 2009 mayoral victory made him the youngest person to serve as Charlotte's mayor, as well as the second African American to hold the role.[2]

Foxx was nominated to the position of Secretary of Transportation by President Barack Obama in April 2013.[3][4] He went on to be confirmed in a 100–0 vote in June 2013.[5][6] Upon taking office, he became the youngest Cabinet secretary serving at the time.[7] After leaving office, Foxx joined rideshare company Lyft as chief policy officer in 2018.[8] Foxx left his role as chief policy officer in October 2021, but continued to serve as an advisor to the company.[9]

Early life[edit]

Foxx was born on April 30, 1971, in Charlotte, North Carolina.[10] He was raised by his mother, Laura Foxx, and his grandparents, James and Mary Foxx,[11] pursued education at Piedmont Open IB Middle School, and graduated from West Charlotte High School.[1][12] He graduated from Davidson College, where he was the first African American student body president,[13] in 1993. Foxx majored in history,[14] and went on to earn a J.D. from New York University School of Law in 1996.[12][14]

Legal career[edit]

After law school, Foxx returned to Charlotte to work for a short time at the Smith, Helms, Mullis, and Moore law firm, and left to become a clerk for Judge Nathaniel R. Jones of the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati. Later he worked for the United States Department of Justice and the United States House of Representatives Judiciary Committee.[12] In 2004, he was the campaign manager for Representative Mel Watt.[13]

In 2001, he returned to Charlotte to work as a business litigator for Hunton & Williams.[12] While a member of the city council, he retained his position as a litigator at Hunton & Williams, switching to part-time status.[citation needed]

Political career[edit]

Municipal government[edit]

Foxx was first elected to the Charlotte City Council in 2005 to an at-large seat, and was re-elected in 2007. He won election as Charlotte's 54th and youngest mayor in 2009 and was re-elected in 2011; he became the city's first Democratic mayor since Harvey Gantt left office in 1987.[citation needed]

Upon becoming mayor, Foxx faced Charlotte's worst recession in more than 80 years. As the nation's second largest financial services center, the city lost more than 25,000 jobs in the recession. Foxx reformed the city's public safety pay plan and developed a demand-driven approach to workforce development that has become a national model.[15] Foxx also announced the creation of more than 4,000 new jobs. He hosted a series of town hall meetings with unemployed workers, pushed for changes to the city's small business loan program, and pressed White House officials for economic recovery spending measures.[citation needed]

From a transportation perspective, Foxx helped salvage the city's largest single capital project: The Blue Line Extension, which was threatened by lower than anticipated sales tax revenue.[16]

Secretary of Transportation[edit]

On April 29, 2013, President Barack Obama announced that he would nominate Foxx to the post of the Secretary of Transportation. On June 27, 2013, the Senate confirmed the nomination by a unanimous vote.[5] Foxx resigned from his elected position as mayor to accept the federal appointment.[17]

Foxx prepared and advocated for the Obama administration's first surface transportation bill, the Grow America Act, in 2014,[18][19] and worked to get its congressional incarnation, the FAST Act, passed.[20] He consolidated the department's financing programs and accelerated permitting policies.[21] Foxx also put forth new rules governing the commercial use of drones,[22] blueprinted a comprehensive national policy on autonomous vehicles,[23] and launched the Department's first Smart City Challenge, engaging more than 70 cities to develop their own strategies to incorporate new technologies into their transportation networks.[24]

Foxx was the designated survivor for the 2015 State of the Union Address on January 20, 2015.[25][26]

Private sector career[edit]

Foxx joined Lyft in October 2018 as the company's chief policy officer.[27] In that role, he advocated for California's Proposition 22, which excluded gig workers from receiving benefits like minimum wage, health care and the right to organize, which are normally afforded to employees.[28] He stepped down from the chief policy officer role in October 2021, but he remained with Lyft as a senior advisor.[29]

In 2022, it was reported that Foxx was under consideration to lead the White House Office of Public Engagement.[30] However, former Mayor of Atlanta Keisha Lance Bottoms was ultimately chosen for the role instead.[31]

Foxx joined the faculty of the Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard University's school of public policy and government, in September 2023 as Emma Bloomberg Professor of the Practice of Public Leadership.[32] In January 2024, it was announced that Foxx would succeed former Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick as co-director of the Kennedy School's Center for Public Leadership. He is set to take over the role in July 2024.[33]

Personal life[edit]

Foxx is married to Samara Ryder,[13] who is also an attorney. They have a daughter and a son.[34]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Morrill, Jim; Lyttle, Steve (November 3, 2009). "Foxx elected Charlotte's mayor". The Charlotte Observer. Retrieved November 3, 2009. [dead link]
  2. ^ Frey, Jennifer. "Born to Run, Raised to Lead | NYU Law Magazine". NYU Law Magazine. Retrieved May 9, 2023.
  3. ^ Baker, Peter (April 29, 2013). "Charlotte Mayor Is Chosen as Transportation Chief". The New York Times. Archived from the original on November 20, 2018. Retrieved February 26, 2017.
  4. ^ "Nomination of Mayor Anthony Foxx to be Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation". Archived (PDF) from the original on March 31, 2022. Retrieved June 25, 2017.
  5. ^ a b "Cabinet post caps Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx's steep ascent". Archived from the original on November 2, 2013. Retrieved June 27, 2013.
  6. ^ "Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx Sworn in as 17th U.S. Secretary of Transportation". July 2, 2013. Archived from the original on April 21, 2015. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
  7. ^ Heil, Emily (April 30, 2013). "Anthony Foxx will be youngest Cabinet secretary". Washington Post. Retrieved May 9, 2023.
  8. ^ McFarland, Matt (October 9, 2018). "Lyft hires Obama administration's top transportation official | CNN Business". CNN. Retrieved May 9, 2023.
  9. ^ Oprysko, Caitlin (October 27, 2021). "Foxx stepping back at Lyft". POLITICO. Retrieved May 9, 2023.
  10. ^ Laurel (October 18, 2009). "Charlotte's Next Mayor". Archived from the original on July 8, 2011. Retrieved November 12, 2009.
  11. ^ "Where Politics is a Family Affair". The Charlotte Observer. February 6, 2007. p. 1B.
  12. ^ a b c d Harrison, Steve (October 18, 2009). "Anthony Foxx, Democrat - Describes Himself as Mediator, Ready to Speak Out on Issues". The Charlotte Observer. p. 1A.
  13. ^ a b c Rubin, Richard (September 29, 2005). "Grandfather's Lessons Pay Off for City Council Contender - Grandson of Stalwart of Democratic Party Leads Primary At-Large Ticket". The Charlotte Observer. p. 1B.
  14. ^ a b "Anthony R. Foxx". Hunton & Williams. Archived from the original on September 23, 2009. Retrieved November 4, 2009.
  15. ^ "Mayor Foxx on Charlotte's "herculean" efforts to promote training". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on August 14, 2018. Retrieved April 25, 2018.
  16. ^ "Charlotte's Once Ambitious Rapid Transit Plan Faces Budget Ax". November 19, 2010. Archived from the original on June 25, 2017. Retrieved April 25, 2018.
  17. ^ "Anthony Foxx resigns as mayor, Patsy Kinsey named new mayor". Archived from the original on December 11, 2013. Retrieved December 9, 2013.
  18. ^ "This Week in Infrastructure: White House offers bill to grow America". May 2, 2014. Archived from the original on April 26, 2018. Retrieved April 25, 2018.
  19. ^ "Foxx Ends Bus Tour by Asking People to Send Congress 'Picture of a Pothole'". February 20, 2015. Archived from the original on April 26, 2018. Retrieved April 25, 2018.
  20. ^ Goad, Ben (December 4, 2015). "Obama signs $305B highway bill". Archived from the original on May 3, 2018. Retrieved April 25, 2018.
  21. ^ "Martin Klepper to lead USDOT Build America Bureau". March 2, 2019. Archived from the original on April 26, 2018. Retrieved April 25, 2018.
  22. ^ Selyukh, Alina (August 29, 2016). "FAA Expects 600,000 Commercial Drones In The Air Within A Year". NPR. Archived from the original on April 26, 2018. Retrieved April 25, 2018.
  23. ^ "US DOT unveils 'world's first autonomous vehicle policy,' ushering in age of driverless cars". September 20, 2016. Archived from the original on April 26, 2018. Retrieved April 25, 2018.
  24. ^ Newcomb, Doug. "Transportation Secretary Foxx On Why Columbus, Ohio Won The DOT's $40 Million Smart City Challenge". Forbes. Archived from the original on April 26, 2018. Retrieved April 25, 2018.
  25. ^ "Obama's 'designated survivor:' Anthony Foxx". USA Today. January 20, 2015. Archived from the original on September 5, 2017. Retrieved November 3, 2017.
  26. ^ Jackson, David (January 20, 2015). "O". NationalJournal. Archived from the original on January 21, 2015. Retrieved January 20, 2015.
  27. ^ "Anthony Foxx, Secretary of Transportation Under President Obama, Joins Lyft". Lyft. July 15, 2013. Archived from the original on February 20, 2019. Retrieved May 13, 2019.
  28. ^ Rodrigo, Chris Mills (November 8, 2020). "Uber, Lyft eager to take California labor win nationwide". The Hill. Retrieved January 8, 2023.
  29. ^ Oprysko, Caitlin. "Foxx stepping back at Lyft". POLITICO. Retrieved January 8, 2023.
  30. ^ Hans, Nichols (May 4, 2022). "Scoop: Biden eyes Anthony Foxx for top White House role". Axios. Retrieved May 9, 2023.
  31. ^ McCammond, Alexi (June 15, 2022). "Scoop: Keisha Lance Bottoms to join White House". Axios. Retrieved May 9, 2023. As Axios previously reported, Biden had at one point been considering former Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx as Richmond's successor.
  32. ^ Hughes, Susan A. (September 19, 2023). "Anthony Foxx: Pushing cities and the technology community to think about how to help solve public problems". www.hks.harvard.edu. Retrieved January 28, 2024.
  33. ^ "New leadership for HKS's Center for Public Leadership". www.hks.harvard.edu. January 23, 2024. Retrieved January 28, 2024.
  34. ^ "Meet the Secretary". United States Department of Transportation. July 15, 2013. Archived from the original on July 15, 2013. Retrieved July 9, 2013.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by Mayor of Charlotte
Succeeded by
Preceded by United States Secretary of Transportation
Succeeded by
U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded byas Former US Cabinet Member Order of precedence of the United States
as Former US Cabinet Member
Succeeded byas Former US Cabinet Member