Senate Confirms Kentucky Native as Head of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Senator McConnell welcomes R.D. James to his office in the U.S. Capitol in December 2017

 U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced today the U.S. Senate overwhelmingly confirmed R.D. James as Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works (Head of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers). James is a native of Fulton County, Kentucky and currently resides in New Madrid, Missouri.

 “Kentucky is home to more than 1,900 miles of navigable waterways, which are an integral part of our nation’s transportation system and a crucial source of thousands of Kentucky jobs. The inland waterways system is so important to our economy, in fact, that nearly one billion tons of commodities are shipped yearly via America’s waterways systems, many traveling through Kentucky,” Senator McConnell said. “As a native Kentuckian, R.D. James understands the importance of our inland waterways system, especially in the Commonwealth. He has an impressive background and is the right person to address our nation’s water infrastructure needs. I was proud to support his confirmation, and I look forward to working with him on a number of Kentucky priorities.”

Last month, Senator McConnell met with James to discuss his nomination. During the meeting, they discussed a number of important projects vital to Kentucky, including construction of Olmsted Lock and Dam and Kentucky Lock. Senator McConnell also raised constituent concerns regarding the Army Corps recent surveying activities at Rough River Lake.

James graduated from the University of Kentucky in 1971 with a degree in civil engineering. He was appointed by President Reagan to serve on the Mississippi River Commission – a position he held for 36 years. James’ full bio is HERE.  As part of the nomination process, James testified before the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works in December 2017. His testimony can be found HERE.

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