April 9, 2019 1:30 PM, EDT

TSA Advisory Committee Includes Trucking Voices

TSA officer checks bagA TSA officer inspects a can that was packed in a suitcase at Dulles International Airport in Virginia last month. TSA has added a Surface Transportation Security Advisory Committee. (Cliff Owen/AP)

Trucking executives have been included as members of the Transportation Security Administration’s new Surface Transportation Security Advisory Committee.

The committee comprises 35 voting members and 14 nonvoting members , TSA announced April 8.

David Pekoske


David Pekoske, the agency’s administrator who will lead the committee, said members will offer recommendations on various surface transportation security issues, such as the development of policies, programs, rulemakings and security directives.

“I look forward to collaborating closely with the newly appointed members of the Surface Transportation Security Advisory Committee,” said Pekoske.

Committee members will meet twice a year — one meeting is open to the public — and report to Pekoske.

The 35 voting members are from various sectors of transportation, including motor carriers, freight rail, pipeline, passenger rail and bus. Voting members serve two-year terms and may continue to serve until the administrator names a successor.

“The knowledge and expertise these leaders bring to the table will play a vital role in TSA’s continued efforts to safeguard the nation’s surface transportation systems,” Pekoske said.

Staff members of American Trucking Associations on the committee are Jacob Pierce, executive director of the Safety Management Council and Transportation Security Council , and Alexandra Rosen, manager of customs, immigration and cross-border operations.

Pierce has worked on ATA’s Safety Management Council and Transportation Security Council for six years. Rosen was hired in January.

“We are very proud that Jacob and Alex have been appointed to this panel and we’re confident they will represent the best interests of our industry and our nation well during these increasingly perilous times,” said ATA President Chris Spear. “Having two key staff experts on security issues named as voting members of this advisory committee shows just how respected ATA is for our expertise and leadership on transportation issues, including on security issues.”

Another trucking representative is Douglas Morris, director of safety and security operations at the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association.

Regarding infrastructure, two leaders from the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials were appointed: Natalie Jones-Best, emergency preparedness and risk manager, and Eileen Phifer, safety and security administrator.

The voting members also include groups that represent surface transportation users, including the National Association of Chemical Distributors, the Chlorine Institute and the Benesch Transportation and Logistics Group.

The 14 nonvoting members serve in an advisory capacity. They represent federal agencies: Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Transportation, Federal Bureau of Investigation and National Transportation Safety Board.

The Surface Transportation Security Advisory Committee was established under the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018, which included reauthorization of TSA. The committee provides periodic reports on issues the group deems important and annual reports with findings and recommendations.