Senate Confirms Secretary of Transportation Justin Powell

The South Carolina Senate confirmed Justin P. Powell to serve as the next Secretary of Transportation. Powell was appointed by the South Carolina Department of Transportation Commission to serve as the next Secretary of Transportation on January 18, 2024. Read the press release.

Powell is the seventeenth Agency Head of the South Carolina Department of Transportation.

Remarks from Secretary of Transportation Justin Powell

Following his confirmation by the Senate, Secretary Powell offers remarks to SCDOT employees in the following video.

Click here to watch the video.

Secretary Powell announces Leadership Team

Secretary Justin P. Powell has announced several new members of the leadership team at the South Carolina Department of Transportation.

Secretary Powell said, “We are at an important juncture as we work to bring the agency’s Strategic 10-Year Plan to a successful close and continue positioning South Carolina for the future. We remain committed to building a better road and bridge network and ensuring prosperity for all. Each of these leaders brings their own strengths to help us build a better South Carolina. They each have my full confidence and I know they will do great things on behalf of the people we serve.”

Rob Perry, P.E. has been named as the Deputy Secretary for Engineering. In this role, Deputy Secretary Perry will provide oversight to the Engineering division, approximately 4,000 employees across the state that are responsible for engineering, building and maintaining the road and bridge network in South Carolina. Perry began his career with SCDOT in 1999 in Charleston as a bridge inspector and most recently served as the Chief Engineer for Bridges and Interim Deputy Secretary for Engineering. 

Karl McCottry has been named as the Deputy Secretary for Finance and Administration. In this role, Deputy Secretary McCottry will oversee the administrative functions of the agency including finance, information technology, procurement, minority and small business affairs, human resources, and local government services. Mr. McCottry has more than 30 years of service to the State of South Carolina, including 12 at the South Carolina Department of Transportation, most recently serving as the Director of Human Resources.

Jennifer Necker, P.E. has been named as the Deputy Secretary for Intermodal and Freight. Deputy Secretary Necker will be responsible for the strategic planning and coordination of transit and rail efforts on behalf of the department, working closely with transit providers and railroads. Necker previously served as the project manager for the Lowcountry Rapid Transit Program, the first of its kind in the state. Necker most recently served as the Acting Director of Mass Transit and Freight Programs.

Brent Rewis, P.E. will continue to serve SCDOT as the Deputy Secretary for Planning, a position he has held since 2020. In this capacity, Deputy Secretary Rewis oversees the strategic transportation planning efforts on behalf of the state – including Momentum 2050, the long range transportation plan currently being developed. Rewis has served at SCDOT for more than 24 years in a variety of roles including construction, maintenance, preconstruction and planning.

Swearing In Ceremony

The South Carolina Department of Transportation will hold a swearing in ceremony for newly confirmed Secretary of Transportation Justin P. Powell and the deputy secretaries. The ceremony will take place at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, April 9, on the front steps of SCDOT Headquarters located at 955 Park Street in Columbia.

Day in the Life: Electronics Technician Supervisor

It’s time to meet Electronics Technician Supervisor Michael Goodwin. For this Day in the Life installment, we spoke with Goodwin about what his job entails, how he ended up joining the SCDOT team, and what he enjoys doing in his off time. Let’s get an up close, behind the scenes look, at how SCDOT manages and maintains the thousands of traffic signals across the state.

Click here to watch the video.

2024 South Carolina Transportation Forum

The 2024 Transportation Forum is over now, but we’ll be back next year! This short video was played at the opening session to welcome attendees to the event. Held at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center March 26-27, forum attendees spent two days learning and collaborating with transportation industry partners.

2024 South Carolina Transportation Forum

Click here to watch the video.

Watch Secretary Powell's S.C. Transportation Forum Remarks

Secretary of Transportation Justin Powell gave opening remarks at the 2024 South Carolina Transportation Forum on March 26, 2024.

Click here to watch the video.

SCDOT Bids Farewell to Retiring Secretary Christy Hall

The month of March 2024 was filled with bittersweet goodbyes as SCDOT employees said farewell to longtime Secretary of Transportation, Christy A. Hall, whose retirement was announced in January.

For many years, Secretary Hall was the face of SCDOT, representing the Department and leading its employees during times of challenge and of celebration. Throughout her career, Secretary Hall has represented the best and brightest of us through her unwavering dedication and commitment to public service.

As we wish her well on her retirement, we look toward a future made better and stronger by her contributions. We will always remain grateful for her leadership as we strive daily to improve our state’s transportation network for the people of South Carolina.

To learn more about her career and service with SCDOT, read the resolution issued by the SCDOT Commission on March 21, commending and recognizing the outstanding career and service of Secretary Hall to the people of the State of South Carolina and wishing her well on her retirement.

SCDOT employees to pick up litter statewide on Thursday, April 4

SCDOT held the annual statewide highway litter clean-up event for Thursday, April 4. Called the "Spring Spruce Up," this initiative is an annual employee tradition. On this day, SCDOT employee volunteers work in groups to collect litter along South Carolina's highways in counties across the state. SCDOT asked the public to drive cautiously and watch out for SCDOT employees working on this day.

Click here to watch the video.

Recent Views of the Ravenel Bridge in Charleston County

The Arthur Ravenel Jr. bridge over the Cooper River in Charleston County is one of the most iconic bridges in North America. Also referred to as the Cooper River Bridge, it opened to vehicle traffic in July 2005 and at the time was the longest cable-stayed bridge in North America. Here are some recent views of the bridge.

Cooper River Bridge in Charleston

Click here to watch the video.

SCDOT District 5 Mechanical Engineer also serves with American Legion Auxiliary 

Many are familiar with the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. It is one of the most important memorials in the United States. 

The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier sits on top of a hill in Arlington National Cemetery overlooking Washington, D.C. For many people, it’s a bucket list destination where they can pay respect to America’s unidentified soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice. For one SCDOT employee, it was an honor she didn’t want to miss out on. 

District Five Mechanical Engineer Lorena Pate grew up in a family full of veterans. Her father served two tours in Vietnam, both of her grandfathers served in World War 2, her husband was in the National Guard and her father-in-law is a Korean War veteran. 

As a girl, Lorena grew up under the influence of her paternal grandfather, Paul Boger Sr., a man who loved the Braves, was down to earth and served in World War 2 in Europe. Using her connection to her grandfather, Lorena joined the American Legion Auxiliary back in 2014. She is now the state president for South Carolina and prides herself on her service to those who served our nation. 

As state president, Lorena was asked to join the state commander of the American Legion in placing a wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. She was accompanied by her father and sister on what she described as a huge honor. 

“I feel like it’s my way of paying them back for all they’ve done,” Lorena said. 

Being the state president, Lorena gets to choose a theme and project. She says her theme this year is called “One is Too Many” and it focuses on preventing veteran, soldier and military personnel suicide. To Lorena, her work with the auxiliary is a labor of love. 

“Some of these veterans just need someone to listen to them,” Lorena said. “If you have time to do something like that, it puts a smile on your face. Veteran and military personnel suicide has become an epidemic and we, as the largest military organization, are trying to bring awareness to this issue.”

As part of her project, Lorena works with Palmetto Animal Assisted Life Services (PAALS) to provide veterans with trained service dogs to help with PTSD and other challenges they may face. She and her team also visit veterans graves, collect school supplies for schools in need, help veterans move and welcomed soldiers home and see them off to their deployments. 

Lorena says she got inspired by her mother. 

“Back when the gulf war started, my mother who was a teacher would take collections of things to send to soldiers overseas. The feeling you get from helping someone and being there for someone is great.”

Lorena says that it’s important for people to help where they can. She said that volunteering for things can make a big difference to those who served. 

Pictured above: Lorena's president's pin showing her chosen theme is in the center. Clockwise from top right: 1) Lorena representing the American Legion Auxiliary while placing a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery; 2) Lorena and her husband, who served in the National Guard, when she was installed as the State President of the American Legion Auxiliary; 3) Lorena’s father, Paul Boger Jr. (left) and her paternal grandfather, Paul Boger Sr. (right); 4) Photo of the wreath Lorena placed at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier; 5) Lorena with her father and sister at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C.; 6) Lorena with her two grandfathers, who both served in World War II. 

Passing of former SCDOT Commissioner Ronnie Crow

Former SCDOT Commissioner Wade R. “Ronnie” Crow of Bennettsville passed away on Jan. 19, 2024.

Crow was first elected to the Marlboro County Council and then as a member House of Representatives in the South Carolina General Assembly. He served on his first term on the Judiciary Committee and second term on the Ways and Means Committee. He also served on the South Carolina State Reorganization Commission, and in 1980, as Mayor of Bennettsville. He served on many committees for economic development during his years in Marlboro County.

Crow began serving on the South Carolina Highway Commission in 1988. He served the citizens of Marlboro, Dillon, Darlington, and Chesterfield counties. After leaving the SCDOT Commission, he was chosen to chair the Marlboro County Transportation Committee, where he served for many years.

On Nov. 12, 2008, the South Carolina General assembly named the Marlboro County SCDOT Maintenance Building on S.C. 38 in his honor. The facility is now known as the “Wade R. Crow Maintenance and Engineering Office Building.”

Crow was a graduate of McColl High School and Clemson University. He attended graduate school at Duke University before entering Walter F. George School of Law, Mercer University, in Macon, Georgia. He practiced law in both North and South Carolina.

Employee Updates:

February 2024

New Employees



Recipe of the Month: Chili for a Big Crowd

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We want your recipes! Please send us an email.

This month's historic photo shows the bridge on Limestone Street over the Pacolet River in Spartanburg County in November 1953.


SCDOT employees received a Notable State Document Award from the State Library for the Come Back to the Land publication on March 13.

SCDOT to hold public involvement meeting in Greenville County

Upcoming Temporary Lane Closure on I-26 eastbound between Laurens and Newberry

SCDOT Requests Comments on Proposed Projects

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