March 6, 2019

Erin Henson
MDOT Public Affairs

Tracie Watkins Rhodes part of 52-member Class of 2019

HANOVER, MD - Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) Secretary Pete K. Rahn today congratulated Tracie Watkins Rhodes, director of the agency's Office of Small & Minority Business Policy, on her selection for Leadership Maryland -- a professional development program dedicated to harnessing the strength of Maryland's local business and community leaders and building a better state.

“MDOT is dedicated to delivering the best transportation network in the nation and having the best leaders helps guarantee that mission," Secretary Rahn said.

Director Rhodes is a member of Leadership Maryland's 27th class, which was assembled in a highly competitive selection process. Participants complete an eight-month, hands-on learning program that launches in April, focused on the state's most vital issues.

“I look forward to connecting with other leaders with different lenses and viewpoints as I work to create policies impacting diversity and inclusion in our state," Director Rhodes said.

Leadership Maryland begins with a two-day opening retreat, followed by five two-day sessions crossing the state and focusing on Maryland's economic development, education, health and human services, criminal justice, the environment and multi-culturalism/diversity. A one-day closing retreat is held in November, with graduation in December. More than 100 experts from business, government, education and the nonprofit community serve as panelists and guest speakers.

Director Rhodes leads MDOT's Office of Small & Minority Business Policy, overseeing outreach activities of the Office of Minority Business Enterprise and managing the state's disparity studies. She and her staff develop activities and accompanying written materials that expand the visibility of MDOT's implementation of the state's small and minority business programs. She also advises on the development of policies intended to improve the success rate of small, minority- and women-owned companies as they seek to participate in projects like MDOT's Public Private Partnerships (P3).

Director Rhodes has a bachelor's degree from Towson University in business administration, with concentrations in management and economics, and a law degree from the University of Maryland School of Law. For the past 20 years, she's been dedicated to advocating, interpreting, and implementing civil rights and equal justice policies related to public contracting programs benefitting small-, women-, and minority-owned firms.

To learn more about Leadership Maryland, call 410-841-2101 or visit

The Maryland Department of Transportation is a customer-driven leader that delivers safe, sustainable, intelligent, and exceptional transportation solutions in order to connect its customers to life's opportunities. To learn more, visit​​