Former mayor Brown tapped to lead MDOT

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 11, 2001

Former Natchez Mayor Larry L. ”Butch” Brown has been named the new executive director of the Mississippi Department of Transportation.

Brown was selected Tuesday by the three-member Transportation Commission to replace Hugh Long, who is retiring this spring.

His nomination must be approved by the Mississippi Senate.

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Brown said he is well aware of ongoing budget problems, but is confident increased cooperation within the state combined with lobbying at the federal level can only mean progress.

&uot;Certainly we’ll move forward,&uot; he said.

&uot;We’ll solicit federal funds and make the funds that we do have go further and do more.&uot;

Brown said he also hopes to increase involvement from smaller, private contractors in MDOT projects who may have been prevented from participating in the past due to the scale of the projects and bonding limitations.

As for any intentions to focus state attention on transportation needs in southwest Mississippi, &uot;we’re going to do everything we can for southwest Mississippi, while at the same time not neglecting the rest of the state,&uot; Brown said.

Janet Sullivan, administrative assistant to MDOT commissioner Wayne Brown, said she is &uot;delighted&uot; to have Brown as the new director.

&uot;Working with him as mayor was just a pleasure,&uot; Sullivan said. &uot;Butch got things done. He has the contacts to get things done; he has the perseverance to get things done. And he is going to get things done for MDOT.&uot;

Sen. Bob M.&160;Dearing, D-Natchez and chairman of the Senate Highways and Transportation Committee, said he is &uot;excited&uot; about working with Brown.

&uot;They were looking for somebody to take the bull by the horns, so to speak,&uot; Dearing said of the transportation commission.

&uot;They picked a good guy, in my opinion. He has demonstrated to us in Natchez he has a good business head on him.&uot;

Brown said he will likely take an apartment in Jackson, but will keep his Natchez-based real estate business, The Brown Company.