|FHWA > Preservation > Memos > Field Technical Expertise Construction and System Preservation|
With the reorganization now nearing completion, the Resource Centers staffing identified, and the Headquarters shift in full swing, we must take a close look at our traditional roles and responsibilities and how we serve our customers, partners and stakeholders. The FHWA has and will continue to be a transportation leader here in the United States and throughout the world. We have served on key management and support positions with AASHTO Subcommittees, task forces, and working groups. The FHWA staff also serves on NCHRP panels as both liaison and technical specialists and there are numerous industry/agency working groups and task forces on which we participate.
These activities provide opportunities for the FHWA staff to contribute to and participate in national and regional initiatives that impact the transportation infrastructure. These opportunities allow us to offer a diverse perspective, lend technical support, and exercise leadership. Most importantly these activities and assignments allow qualified FHWA specialists to grow both technically and professionally while contributing to national goals and objectives established by FHWA, AASHTO, or other industry stakeholders and partners.
In the past, most of these important opportunities and assignments for construction and maintenance programs have been drawn from Headquarters and Region Office technical and management staff. This was where the senior technical staff and program expertise generally resided. With the development of the Resource Centers and the re-assignment of program and technical responsibilities to the Resource Centers and the Division Offices, we find it necessary to identify field interest and expertise to continue many of these current and future activities. At present we are looking for individuals to serve as FHWA Liaisons to the various task forces for the AASHTO Subcommittee on Maintenance. We also have several NHI courses in the construction and system preservation area which we will need panelists and lead technical support managers. Many of these assignments are 1 to 3 years in length. Most involve 1 or 2 meetings or field trips per year and 1 to 3 weeks time commitment per year.
At this time, we ask you to identify your staff members you wish to have considered for assignments now and in the near future in the construction and system preservation technical program areas. We are looking for qualified, experienced, and interested individuals willing to work with our stakeholders and partners on national technical and program initiatives. This should be considered a unique career development opportunity. Based on your feedback, we will identify potential individuals for consideration for future assignments. A list of Technical Speciality Program Areas is attached for your consideration. Your feedback will also help us to network with those field engineers interested in these programs to keep them informed of current and future program initiatives. We will, of course, coordinate all potential assignments with the field management.
In the past, special funds have not been set aside to carry out these "routine" assignments. The Program Offices, Regions, and Divisions have been expected to annually budget for their level of commitment and involvement. On special assignments or short-term task efforts, often the Headquarter or Region Program Office would provide assistance with some necessary per diem and travel funds. With our shift in resources, personnel, and budget, much of this has not changed. We would expect the field office manager to commit to the time required and to budget for at least 1-week of travel per year. The Resource Center or the Headquarters Program Office should support for special assignments requiring travel commitments or resources beyond 1-week per year.
Please provide your responses by e-mail, using the attached format, to Jim Sorenson in the Office of Asset Management by June 15, 1999. (This request is being sent by e-mail to your office to facilitate your electronic response by return mail.) If you have questions or wish to discuss the request, please do not hesitate to contact me at 202-366-0371 or Jim Sorenson at 202-366-1333. We look forward to working with the field to fully utilize the Agency's talents and technical resources.