Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month — Amit Bose, Federal Railroad Administration

On January 12, 2022, Amitabha “Amit” Bose was confirmed by the U.S. Senate as administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA). This Senate confirmation by a vote of 68-29 made Bose the first person of South Asian descent to lead FRA, which is an agency within the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT).

Bose was born in the city of Laheriasarai in eastern India’s state of Bihar. At the age of five, he immigrated to the United States with his family. They ended up living in DeKalb County in north-central Georgia. Bose earned a bachelor of arts degree in both political science and Middle Eastern & Asian languages & cultures from Columbia University in 1994; a master of international affairs degree in political and economic development (with a Southern Asian Institute certificate) from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs in 1995; and a juris doctor degree from the University of Georgia School of Law in 2004.

Bose’s work experience has included serving as an associate at the Atlanta-based law firm Smith, Gambrell & Russell LLP; director of the office of policy & infrastructure development for the New Jersey Department of Transportation; and director of federal government relations for New Jersey Transit Corporation. His first tour of duty at FRA took place from 2009 to 2011, during which he served as that agency’s director of legislative affairs. Bose subsequently worked for USDOT, serving as deputy assistant secretary between 2011 and 2014 and then associate general counsel until 2015. He then returned to FRA, working there from 2015 to 2017 in such roles as senior advisor, chief counsel, and deputy administrator.

Bose then went back to the private sector as an employee at the longtime infrastructure design firm HNTB Corporation. He worked for HNTB as associate vice president & Mid-Atlantic transit and rail director in 2017-18; and associate vice president & program director between 2018 and 2021.

Bose returned to FRA in January 2021, again serving as deputy administrator. He continued in this role until being confirmed as administrator the following year. “From his work with New Jersey Transit to his leadership at FRA during two administrations, Amit has spent his distinguished career supporting America’s railways,” said Pete Buttigieg, U.S. secretary of transportation, at the time of Bose’s confirmation for the top job at FRA.

“America’s railroads are an indispensable part of our transportation system and national economy,” asserted Bose as he began that new role as administrator. “This is an exciting time to lead approximately 900 FRA employees as we seek to advance America’s second great rail revolution.” As FRA administrator, Bose plays a pivotal role in the implementation of national rail policy and planning and also the oversight of various efforts to improve the country’s wide-ranging freight and passenger rail network.

Photo Credit: Public Domain

For more information on Amit Bose, please check out

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