White House Yanks Former MBTA Head Bev Scott’s NTSB Nomination

President Obama nominated Scott for the position in July.

beverly scott

Photo by Olga Khvan

The White House has withdrawn its nomination of Beverley Scott, the former head of the MBTA, for a spot on the National Transportation Safety Board, citing “personal reasons related to her family.” President Barack Obama nominated Scott for the position on July 30.

Scott presided over the cash-strapped transportation system during its collapse last year amidst the snowiest winter in Boston history, delivering a now-classic, 26-minute press conference defending the agency, described as “passionate,” “full-throated,” and “bizarre.” Scott abruptly announced her resignation the next day, officially stepping down in April.

“During these past two years-plus, it has been an absolute pleasure and honor to serve with and lead this dedicated team of transit professionals and public servants,” Scott wrote in her resignation letter. “In my almost forty years in this industry, I have not worked at a public transportation system with such a personal connection to the people and communities it serves.”

“The Governor and Lt. Governor were surprised to learn of Dr. Scott’s resignation this afternoon,” Tim Buckley, Baker’s spokesman, said at the time. The governor has enacted a number of reforms since then, appointing a five-member MBTA fiscal control board and instituting an $82.7 million “winter resiliency plan.

Prior to joining the MBTA, Scott served as the CEO and general manager of the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority from 2007 to 2012, as well as the the Sacramento Regional Transit District from 2002 to 2007.

If confirmed by the U.S. Senate, Scott’s five-year term would have ran through 2019, carrying a $155,000 salary. The Massachusetts delegation seemed unenthused at the time. “I think that that is the decision of the president and this will be something that the Commerce Committee will weigh in on,” Sen. Elizabeth Warren said.

“Her nomination will come before the Commerce Committee and we will give her a full and fair hearing, and I think that the president has made a decision, and I think respect has to be given to the president, but we have to go through the process,” Sen. Ed Markey said.