Electric bus maker Proterra Inc. said today that Ray LaHood, former U.S. Transportation Secretary, has joined its board of directors.
Garrett Mikita, president and CEO of the Greenville-based company, said Proterra is “incredibly fortunate” to have LaHood join its board.
“He is a true and long-standing supporter of cost effective and sustainable transportation and an advocate of both transit agencies and manufacturers,” Mikita said. “We look forward to having the benefit of his wisdom and counsel as we work to advance the American transportation system and enable better solutions for taxpayers in transit.”
LaHood said: “I believe in the need for dependable, lower cost, more sustainable transit options.”
He said that electric-powered vehicles are “the future of transit, and I am pleased to lend my knowledge and support to building this future with Proterra — the clear industry leader and the only American EV bus manufacturer.”
Before serving as Secretary of Transportation, from 2009-2013, LaHood served 14 years as Congressman for Illinois’ 18th District.
During his time as Transportation Secretary, LaHood was a supporter of EV transit, leading the Federal Transit Administration’s Clean Fuels Program, which was used to help fund the purchase of EV buses by several cities across the country.
He visited Proterra in early 2011, calling the bus company “a model for the rest of the country.”
Proterra designs and builds zero emission buses from its Greenville plant.