NHTSA prepares to reorganize its senior ranks

Ryan Beene   

Automotive News

June 1, 2015 

WASHINGTON — The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will soon have some fresh faces in key recall positions as part of an agency reorganization intended to streamline its management structure.

According to sources here and job openings posted on the U.S Department of Transportation’s website, the agency is preparing the reorganization to follow the retirement or departure of three key officials who have overseen recalls at the agency.

Kevin Vincent, NHTSA’s chief counsel, has been transferred to the DOT’s office of general counsel.

Daniel Smith, senior associate administrator for vehicle safety, plans to retire in June.

Nancy Lewis, associate administrator for enforcement, retired this spring.

Selecting their replacements gives NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind an opportunity to continue to put his stamp on the agency in a way that could outlast his tenure as administrator. The three departing officials have played major roles in recent high-profile enforcement cases, including the defective General Motors ignition switch and defective Takata airbag recalls.

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