For Immediate Release:
August 12, 2019
OTS Marketing and Public Affairs
New Director to Head the California Office of Traffic Safety
Elk Grove, Calif. – Barbara Rooney has been appointed as the new Director for the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) and Governor’s Representative for Highway Safety at the federal level.
“Traveling safely is a critical part of everyday lives; something we cannot take for granted,” OTS Director Rooney said.
“California must continue to lead in our efforts to reduce fatalities and injuries on our roadways through innovation, education and partnerships. I’m excited and honored to lead California’s efforts on this front as Director of the Office of Traffic Safety.”
Rooney most recently served as Deputy Director of Legislation at the California High-Speed Rail Authority (CHSRA), where she represented the CHSRA on all legislative matters before the California Legislature and Congress. As the largest, most-complex, and in some respects, most far-reaching public infrastructure project in the nation, Rooney was instrumental in navigating numerous regulatory, environmental, political, funding and other challenges. She also oversaw the CHSRA’s management of $3.5 billion in federal grants awarded to California’s High-Speed Rail Program.
Rooney previously served in multiple positions at the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) including Training Officer, Principal Legislative Analyst, Chief of the Departmental Training Branch, and Deputy Director of Legislation where she was successful in achieving favorable outcomes for the DMV and the people of California regarding hundreds of legislative measures aimed at improving traffic and public safety. Most notably, Rooney was widely recognized as the DMV’s expert in the body of law designed to discourage drivers from operating vehicles under the influence and played a vital role in the crafting of legislation for numerous other traffic safety areas of law.
As the OTS Director, Rooney manages more than $90 million in federal funding for traffic safety grants across the state. Rooney will set annual goals and priority areas for safety programs in the Highway Safety Plan and Strategic Highway Safety Plan aimed at reducing the number of victims killed and injured on California roads. She is also responsible for preparing an Annual Performance Report that highlights accomplishments in traffic safety efforts, as well as working with other agencies and partner organizations on new and innovative safety measures.
“I am excited to have Barbara take the lead at OTS during this important time for public safety,” said California State Transportation Agency Secretary, David Kim. “Her expertise on the legislative and policy side will help guide OTS in the right direction as we work toward our goal of zero traffic deaths.”
The OTS encourages everyone to make roadway safety a part of their daily routine. To learn more about our “Go Safely, California” campaign, visit gosafelyca.org.
The OTS administers funding for traffic safety programs statewide with the goal of reducing crashes that result in deaths, injuries, and economic losses. The OTS is a department under the California State Transportation Agency (CalSTA).