OCTA taps Caltrans chief for CEO spot

Posted on June 23, 2009

The Orange County (Calif.) Transportation Authority tapped Will Kempton as its new CEO, effective August 3.

Kempton has served as the head of the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) for the past five years, where he oversaw 50,000 lane miles of state highways, an annual budget of nearly $14 billion and $10 billion worth of transportation improvements under construction.

"This is a very challenging time for every public agency in California. Finding a new CEO for OCTA with Will Kempton's transportation knowledge and experience at a time like this is a grand-slam home run for us and for everyone in Orange County," said OCTA Chairman Peter Buffa. "Will is one of the most respected leaders in transportation in the country, with a rock-solid reputation that will serve us well. We are very excited about having him join the OCTA team."

Kempton, who began his career at Caltrans in 1973, has also served as assistant city manager for the city of Folsom, Calif.; executive director of the Santa Clara County Traffic Authority; and partner at Smith, Kempton & Watts.

Kempton is replacing Art Leahy, who left in March to head the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. He will stay on board at Caltrans until July 31.  


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