The Austin Chronicle

CAMPO Committee Nominates Three for Cap Met Board

By Lee Nichols, October 30, 2009, 2:04pm, Newsdesk

The CAMPO nominations committee today recommended that community activist Frank Fernandez, transportation and land use consultant John H. Langmore, and Austin Mayor Pro Tem Mike Martinez fill the three slots that organization gets on the Capital Metro Board of Directors.

CAMPO – the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization, the group of elected officials that drives transportation planning in Central Texas – had three slots to fill on Cap Met's board, thanks to legislation passed this spring by the board chair, Austin state Sen. Kirk Watson, that restructured the board. The three slots are one more than CAMPO currently has. The recommendations ultimately must be approved by the CAMPO board, an action that must take place before the end of the year.

CAMPO's current representatives on the board are John Treviño and Mike Manor. Treviño, who has suffered health problems of late, did not reapply for the position. Manor, competing against in a field of eight, was soundly rejected for reappointment, finishing seventh on a scored rating by the nominations committee.

The new board structure requires that one of the slots be an elected official; one be someone with at least 10 years of executive management experience; and the third have 10 years as an accounting or financial professional.

Fernandez, who got the financial slot, had the advantage of being a known quantity to CAMPO – he currently sits on its Transit Working Group, an advisory body. In addition to working on Wall Street for Salomon Smith Barney back in the 1990s, he has a lengthy activist résumé in Austin with HousingWorks, PeopleFund, and currently as executive director of Green Doors, an affordable housing nonprofit.

Langmore, taking the executive experience slot, also has served time in local activist trenches. The former Caterpillar Inc. executive and former policy director for the Texas House of Representatives Transportation Committee currently sits on the boards of Envision Central Texas, the Alliance for Public Transportation, and the Congress for the New Urbanism.

Both Fernandez and Langmore assured the committee they would cut back on their other community activities to focus their attention on Cap Met.

The choice of Martinez for the elected official slot opens up another slot for a city of Austin appointment. Martinez and Council Member Chris Riley currently represent Austin on the board. Riley’s appointment does not expire until July. With Martinez moving over to the CAMPO slot, the Council must make another pick that, according to the legislation, may or may not be an elected official. Committee member and Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell, before leaving the meeting early, indicated that the council’s pick likely will not be a council member.

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