U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, introduced Mr. Rick A. Dearborn, of Oklahoma, ahead of his nomination hearing. Dearborn was nominated by President Trump to serve as a Director of the Amtrak Board of Directors.
Remarks as prepared for delivery:
Mr. Chairman, I am pleased to introduce Mr. Rick Dearborn, a lifelong train enthusiast and fellow Oklahoman, who has been nominated to serve as a Director of the Amtrak Board of Directors.
As a kid in Oklahoma, he would go down to the railroad every summer evening and he would place a penny to be flattened on the tracks and when he was lucky, catch a cold carton that they would send him because all of the railroad people all liked him.
While attending the University of Oklahoma, Rick found a job working in a train yard in Oklahoma City, loading cars, Celebrities and Citations mostly, three levels high into rail cars with 100 degree heat. We get pretty hot out there.
Throughout his 20-year-career working on Capitol Hill and in Washington D.C., trains were never far from his mind, or his home.
He is an avid collector of model trains. In fact, I thought, when I was talking to him some time ago that my kids, when they were little, had the biggest model train thing. I remember we lowered it from the ceiling down in the garage, but it wasn't sixteen by thirty feet like yours was.
Working on Capitol Hill, he took a keen interest in passenger rail. In addition to being an avid personal rider of the Amtrak, I chaired the Environmental Public Works committee when we went through Tea 21, SAFETEA-LU, MAP-21, the FAST Act and Rick was always there talking about trains even though that wasn't our jurisdiction.
He has always known trains—personally and professionally, he knows how they operate and the infrastructure necessary to keep them operating.
I believe that Rick Dearborn's personal passion for trains and his professional experience working rail issues make him the ideal candidate to serve on the Amtrak Board of Directors, and I look forward to his testimony today. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.