Alan S. Boyd, first Secretary of Transportation and railroad president, dies

Written by David C. Lester, Editor-in-Chief
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Alan S. Boyd was the nation’s first Secretary of Transportation.

Although no longer a familiar name to most of today’s railroaders, Alan S. Boyd was a transportation industry icon during the 1960s and ’70s. He died at the age of 98 yesterday in Seattle.

Alan Boyd was nominated as the first U.S. secretary of transportation by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1966, and was easily confirmed by the Senate. He spent two years getting the U.S. Department of Transportation off the ground.

Boyd then became president of the Illinois Central Railroad (now Canadian National) and served in that post from 1969-1976. Next, he was president of Amtrak from 1978 to 1982. He served in several other government positions, and in 1982, he joined Airbus and worked there from 1982 to 1992.

Boyd retired in 1993.

For more information, check Boyd’s obituary in today’s New York Times.

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