Updated Aug 28, 2023 - Transit

Massachusetts transportation head Gina Fiandaca to depart after seven months

A photo of Gina Fiandaca's head as she's in a press conference in January after being named Healey's next transportation secretary

Massachusetts Transportation Secretary Gina Fiandaca. Photo: Craig F. Walker/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Massachusetts Transportation Secretary Gina Fiandaca is stepping down.

Why it matters: Fiandaca will become the first official to leave Gov. Maura Healey's cabinet, just over seven months into the job.

Driving the news: Fiandaca's last day is Sept. 11, though she will stay on in an advisory role through the end of the year, according to Healey's office.

  • Monica Tibbits-Nutt, the transportation undersecretary and a former MBTA Fiscal and Management Control Board member, will fill in as acting transportation secretary.
  • In an internal email provided to Axios, Fiandaca told employees yesterday morning that she had decided to step down, though she did not say why.

Catch up fast: Fiandaca faced scrutiny earlier this year after the Boston Globe reported a $900,000 no-bid contract went to a consulting firm led by her ex-brother-in-law.

  • Like many before her, she also faced criticism over safety and delays at the MBTA, in this case because the short-staffed agency had implemented slow zones to repair problems flagged in a federal review.
  • Fiandaca also oversaw implementation of a new law that lets undocumented immigrants obtain a license, as well as this summer's closure of the Sumner Tunnel to accelerate repairs.

What they're saying: "I know I am leaving the department in capable hands," Fiandaca said in a statement, adding that the administration is "dedicated to addressing our transportation challenges by putting people first."

Flashback: Fiandaca was Boston's director of the Office of the Parking Clerk before becoming the city's transportation commissioner under former Mayor Marty Walsh.

  • She moved to Austin to work as assistant city manager overseeing mobility before being tapped to lead MassDOT under Healey.

Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect additional details from Fiandaca's email to department staff.


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