Pete Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Ind., and former Democratic presidential candidate, was sworn in on Feb. 3 as U.S. transportation secretary.
In an email that was obtained by the Associated Press, Buttigieg urged “imaginative, bold, forward thinking” as the transportation department undertakes a massive revamp of America’s infrastructure and addresses rising climate challenges.
“Today, we face an unprecedented health crisis, we’re navigating an economy in danger and our nation is reckoning with the impacts of systemic racism,” Buttigieg tweeted in a video message to the American public. “But, with new leadership comes a new opportunity, a chance to build our transportation system back better than it ever was before.”
Buttigieg succeeds former transportation secretary Elaine Chao, who announced her resignation on Jan. 11 following the attack on the U.S. capitol.