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Rail Division Administrator becomes more than just "interim," and Lane County gets a new area manager

In a sign that ODOT’s Geo-Environmental Section may be attempting to take over the agency, two people who until recently led the section have been placed in important positions in other areas of ODOT. 

  Hal Gard, who has served as Interim Rail Division Administrator since the beginning of the year, has had the “interim” dropped from his title and has been appointed by ODOT Director Matt Garrett to serve in this position in a permanent capacity.  In announcing the appointment, Garrett noted that “Hal has demonstrated the leadership and administrative skills we need in this position.”
Hal has been with ODOT since 1994, serving as the agency's first archeologist, as environmental program coordinator and as manager of the Geo-Environmental Section.
Michael Ward, ODOT’s Public Transit Division​ Administrator, has also announced his retirement at the end of May after many years of service in transit and at the DMV.  Director Garrett has asked Gard to take on the administration of the Public Transit Division on an interim basis after Ward retires.  
  Frannie Brindle, who served as Gard’s deputy at Geo-Environmental until last year, has been named Area Manager for Region 2’s Area 5, which covers Lane County.  Frannie had been serving as Interim Area Manager for Area 4, which covers Linn, Benton and Lincoln counties. Amy Ramsdell, a project leader in Area 4, will take over as Interim Area Manager there. 
The Area 5 Manager position came open when Sonny Chickering was promoted to Region 2 Manager.