Biography


SENIOR EXECUTIVE HIGHLIGHTS

As Chairman of the Illinois Senate Transportation Committee, demonstrate excellent communication skills, relationship management capabilities, strong management and leadership skills by leading, developing, negotiating and passing a bipartisan, multi-year, multi-billion dollar state capital program for transportation.

Developed extensive executive level management and leadership experience while serving as Commissioner of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago – with an annual budget of approximately $1.3 billion for operating and maintaining the most extensive, complex flood control and wastewater treatment operation in the world.

As a Federal Administrator at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Department of Defense, and the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs – exercised strong financial management and strategic planning skills with impeccable professional ethics. Successfully implemented national programs, policies and regulations and had direct responsibility for managing the transparency, accountability and integrity of multi-million dollar federal procurement processes in the context of complex and politically sensitive environment.

CAREER CHRONOLOGY ILLINOIS STATE SENATOR

(2003-Present) Chairman, Transportation Committee (2009-Present)
• Provided leadership for the improvement of Illinois’ multi-faceted transportation system in coordination with Congressman Dan Lipinski, member of the US House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, and former Republican Congressman and current Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood. These efforts resulted in continual accurate projections and effective planning of the state’s annual multi-year programs that establish far-reaching goals for transportation in Illinois.

• Authored one of the nation's first traffic safety laws that banned texting while driving

• Provided legislative oversight and management of the Illinois Department of Transportation's responsibilities for building and maintaining the state's highways, air, rail and public transportation projects; promoted traffic safety to facilitate open and accessible commerce and travel for all of Illinois; led efforts to focus the Department on programming, engineering, administrative efficiencies, and improved process management, that resulted in more miles of improved pavement, bridge improvements and greater safety improvements than had been projected, despite Department staff reductions.

• Fostered ongoing strategic planning and communications strategies for legislative advocacy with federal, county and municipal leaders, the Regional Transportation Authority, Chicago Transit Authority, Metra and PACE leadership, in conjunction with the Transportation for Illinois Coalition.

• Authored and passed in 2010 an Illinois and Midwest High Speed Rail Commission to advance planning for a bullet train network in the Midwest; worked with allies in the General Assembly to secure the Quinn Administration's commitment for bullet trains.

• Led the effort in 2009 to pass the first capital infrastructure program in over a decade in Illinois that authorized $31 billion to create nearly 500,000 jobs over a six-year period with a major emphasis on transportation, including road, transit, rail and air investments.

• Served as a key leader in crafting the transportation program of the capital program that included $14.3 billion for work on roads and bridges, $7 billion for other transportation projects such as high- speed rail, $3.6 billion for building schools in primary education and $1.5 billion for higher education

• Secured $300 million for CREATE, $150 million for Amtrak improvements and $400 million for high-speed rail in the capital bond program in direct negotiations with President Cullerton and Speaker Madigan.

• Recognized as the most prominent advocate for public transportation in the Illinois General Assembly; formally recognized by the Regional Transportation Authority in 2009 for leadership on the capital plan that provided $2.7 billion for mass transit in Northeastern Illinois.

Under the direct legislative jurisdiction and leadership of Chairman Sandoval the Illinois Department of Transportation has accomplished the following:

• Delivery of its nearly $1.8 billion annual highway program even with the lowest staff headcount in IDOT history.

• Expanded passenger rail service for Illinois travelers and a record number of train passengers as nearly 1.5 million utilized intercity passenger service.

• Expanded public transit service especially in historically underserved areas.

• Significant improvements to the regional airport system.

• Improved coordination and oversight of public transportation service.

Illinois vast and complex transportation system includes the following systems:

• More than 140,000 miles of roads and streets and more than 26,400 bridges carrying nearly 300 million vehicle-miles of travel daily throughout Illinois.

• 52 public transit systems with 5,700 transit vehicles serving nearly 600 million passengers a year.

• 52 privately owned freight railroad companies operating on 7,380 miles of rail lines.

• 12 privately owned intercity bus companies.

• 83 public airports (11 with commercial air service) and 54 private airports.

• 140 intermodal freight transfer facilities and 35 major passenger intermodal transfer points for intercity rail, bus and air transportation.

Chairman, Commerce and Economic Development Committee

(2003-2008) Member, Appropriations Committee
• Provided annual oversight of the state’s $57 billion budget as a member of the Appropriations Committee.

Vice Chair, Local Government Committee

• Acquired extensive experience with local government policies and statutes as they relate to state and regional legislation, while serving with then-colleague President Barack Obama.

METROPOLITAN WATER RECLAMATION DISTRICT OF GREATER CHICAGO (1999-2002) COMMISSIONER CHAIRMAN, ENGINEERING COMMITTEE

• Bipartisan appointment between then-Republican Governor George Ryan and Mayor Richard M. Daley as a Commissioner of the District, which serves 5.1 million people, 124 suburban municipalities in addition to Chicago and the commercial/industrial equivalent of 4.5 million more by processing more than 1 billion gallons of waste water every day for an area of 872 square miles; the District owns and maintains seven treatment plants, including the largest waste water treatment plant in the world in Stickney; controls more than 76 miles of navigable waterways; and owns 547 miles of intercepting sewers and 94 miles of underground tunnels as part of the Tunnel and Reservoir Plan, the nation's largest public works program for flood control.

• Oversaw all aspects of the District's operations and engaged in financial management and strategic planning.

• Chaired the District’s Committee on Engineering and the Committee on Public Health and Welfare, which provided policy and budget direction in the planning and design of the District’s complex, multi-million dollar infrastructure projects as well as security of all plant facilities.

• Approved the District's annual budget of $1.3 billion and provided ultimate managerial oversight of more than 2,300 employees.

• Assisted in planning and approving the final completion of the Tunnel and Reservoir Plan (Deep Tunnel).

• Participated in the strategic planning process to secure storm water management authority from the Illinois General Assembly for Cook County, the second largest county in the country.

• Ensured the District maintained its excellent financial condition, reflected in its AAA bond rating and continuing awards from the Government Finance Officers Association.

UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT (1984-1999) ENVIRONMENTAL PRTOECTION AGENCY DEPATMENT OF DEFENSE DEPATMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS

• Served for 15 years in a federal public service career at three of the nation’s largest federal agencies.

• Demonstrated exceptional executive and financial management skills.

• Carried out agency responsibilities that included management of critical aspects of the Superfund program for a six-state region, worldwide logistics and strategic planning.

• Procured and contracted for an independent health care delivery system.

• Provided strategic planning and oversight as Senior Program Official of the Superfund Division of the Environmental Protection Agency – Region 5 for human resources, equal employment, policy analysis and audit coordination of the Division’s program by the EPA Inspector General, the Office of Management and budged and the General Accounting Office. The Superfund in 1999 was a $1.5 billion national program.

• Served as an enforcement official for the Waste Management Division of the EPA (1993-1997) with responsibilities that

included the management of enforcement actions on responsible parties of hazardous waste sites.

• Served as a member of the Regional Reinvention Government Task Force, which was spearheaded by the Vice President Al Gore, serving under President Bill Clinton.

• Served as a Procurement Official in the Planning and Management Division of the EPA (1990-1993); responsibilities included planning, negotiations and management of complex, multi-million dollar reimbursement contracts in support of the Superfund program; exercised authority to make technical and administrative decisions, determinations and conclusions, including the applicability of procurement laws and Comptroller General Decisions.

• Served as a Contract Specialist at the Department of Veterans Affairs, Hines, Illinois (1989-1990) with financial managerial responsibilities for conducting pre and post award audits and awarding contracts for hospital equipment, supplies, goods and services.

• Served proudly under the respected voice of the southwest suburbs of Cook County, namely Secretary of Veterans Affairs Edward Derwinsky, appointed by the then-President George H.W. Bush.

• Served as a Contract Administrator at the Department of Defense, Defense Logistics Agency in Chicago (1984-1989) during the height of President Ronald Reagan’s defense build-up; financial managerial responsibilities included production planning oversight and the management and negotiation of contracts for military hardware and equipment for the armed services.

FEDERAL COLLATERAL DUTY APPOINTMENTS

• Appointed U.S. EPA Regional Hispanic Employment Program Manager (1991 to 1995). Advocated and implemented management programs promoting the employment, development, and advancement of minorities.

• Chicago Federal Executive Board, Chair of Equal Employment Program (1992 to 1993) for all federal agencies, which represents over 53,000 federal employees in Chicago.

• Elected President of the American Federation of Government Employees Union (1988), the Local representative of over 700 federal employees.

EDUCATION AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND AWARDS

• B.S., Loyola University of Chicago, Chicago, IL

• H.S. Diploma, Quigley Preparatory Seminary, Chicago, IL