Amy Scarton will be the new chief of the Washington state ferry system, the Washington State Department of Transportation announced Tuesday.
Scarton will replace Lynne Griffith, who is retiring on Jan. 31.
Ferry officials staid Scarton will begin in her new post in February. Currently, she serves as the transportation agency’s assistant secretary for Community and Economic Development.
“I am very pleased Amy will be leading our strong team at Washington State Ferries,” said Secretary of Transportation Roger Millar.
“Amy’s national experience managing programs and projects across all transportation modes, combined with the top-notch crews, will help ensure the ferry division remains on course,” he added.
Scarton will be responsible for guiding the ferries management team and all ferries employees to meet safety, operational and budgetary goals. She is also expected to collaborate with community and labor partners as well as other Department of Transportation divisions.
“I’m excited to join the crew of Washington State Ferries,” Scarton said.
“First, I want to acknowledge Lynne Griffith and all WSF crewmembers,” Scarton added. “They have done remarkable work, from reducing missed sailings to saving the lives of dozens of people every year. I know there will be challenges ahead, and we will keep our focus on maintaining our strong safety record and improving service reliability.”
Officials said Scarton has worked in the transportation industry both in Washington state and in Washington, D.C. She had senior roles in both the Obama and Bush administrations at U.S. Department of Transportation, and was legal counsel to former Chairman James Oberstar of the U.S. House of Representatives Highway and Transit Subcommittee.
In Washington state, she managed the DOT offices that support the agencies’ rail, freight, aviation, local programs, planning and public transportation activities.
Governor Jay Inslee thanked Griffith for her leadership of the state ferry system, the largest in the U.S., and said Scarton would be an able hand at the helm.
“As a lifelong user of our iconic ferry system, I know how critical it is to keep the vessels running on time and the challenges of maintaining the fleet,” Inslee said. “I thank Lynne for her capable leadership and helping lead important improvements at WSF, and I am pleased someone with Amy Scarton’s experience can take the helm at ferries and build on the team’s recent successes.”