ROBERT E. FARRIS
1988 — 1989
Federal Highway Administrator
Businessman — State Transportation Commissioner — Administrator
Robert E. Harris was appointed Federal Highway Administrator in June 1988, after serving as the FHWA's Deputy Federal Highway Administrator from August 1986.
Before joining the FHWA, Mr. Farris was affiliated with the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, serving as Chairman of its Standing Committee on Aviation, and on the Executive Committee and Policy Board. Mr. Farris also was on the Executive Committee of the Transportation Research Board.
In Tennessee, Mr. Farris served as Commissioner of the Department of Transportation from 1981 to 1985. He also was president of his own business, specializing in the marketing of competition swimwear.
As administrator, Mr. Farris strengthened motor carrier regulations concerning the licensing and testing of truck and bus drivers. In addition, Mr. Farris initiated a series of studies to prepare the FHWA to meet the challenges of the future.
In highway research and development, he established the design for an expanded program to address highway needs through the year 2020. Under the design, the FHWA would conduct research projects to solve problems in areas such as traffic congestion, highway safety, and environmental concerns.