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Joel Szabat

Deputy Assistant Secretary for Transportation Policy

Joel Szabat is a Deputy Assistant Secretary for Transportation Policy. This is his second tour of duty at DOT. Before returning to DOT, Szabat was Chief of Staff of the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Previously at DOT, Szabat led department and government-wide initiatives such as the President's Management Agenda, accelerating transportation projects of national significance, reducing freight congestion, and research prioritization. In 2005 Szabat directed the U.S. government's transportation reconstruction program in Iraq and served as the Transportation Counselor to the American Ambassador in Baghdad.


Szabat has worked in the public sector for over 20 years. Before joining DOT, Szabat served as a principal consultant on transportation issues in the California State Assembly, served as a management and budget aide to the Administrator for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and worked in a management consulting firm.

Szabat received his B.A. in economics and government from Georgetown University, and his MBA from Harvard Business School. During the Cold War, he was in the United States Army commanding tank units patrolling the East-West German border.

A former resident of Sacramento, California, he and his wife founded the non-profit International Leadership Foundation, providing public service scholarships for Asian American college students.

Updated: Wednesday, January 28, 2015
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