Gov. Hickenlooper Announces Michael Lewis as CDOT Executive Director

Nov. 20, 2017 -

DENVER—Gov. John Hickenlooper announced today Michael Lewis will be the next executive director for the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT).

Lewis most recently served as deputy executive director and chief operating officer for CDOT, where he provided policy, technical, organizational and operational direction for the $1.4 billion organization. He also served as director of the Rhode Island Department of Transportation, is a former president of the American Association of State Highways and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), and is a member of the National Academy of Construction (NAC).

"Mike has a reputation as a problem solver and brings an incredible transportation background to CDOT at a time when our state is faced with significant transportation challenges," Hickenlooper said. "His experience with some of the biggest projects in our state is critical as we build upon the successes of the last few years. I look forward to seeing his leadership as we embark on significant future projects."

Lewis is most known for serving as the project director of the Central Artery/Tunnel Project, more commonly known as the Big Dig. He managed all aspects of design, construction and administration of the $14.8 billion project, one of the world's largest and most complex infrastructure projects.

"I'm honored to have the chance to work for Gov. Hickenlooper in this capacity and be part of this cabinet," Lewis said. "CDOT has an incredible opportunity in the next few years to address many of our safety and congestion problems, whether moving forward with very needed projects, continuing to improve the customer experience with a focus on the operations of our system, or advancing transportation technology through our RoadX Program."

Under the leadership of outgoing director Shailen Bhatt, CDOT successfully achieved a series of transportation upgrades that have enhanced travel throughout the state. Examples include:

  • the opening of the US 36, I-70 Mountain and I-25 North to 120th Express Lanes, which improved travel from 20 percent to 50 percent along those corridors;
  • launching Bustang, CDOT's interregional bus service; and
  • creating the RoadX program.

CDOT is making Colorado a national innovation leader with efforts like the world's first self-driving commercial delivery truck, the Autonomous Impact Protection Vehicle to protect work zones from distracted drivers, and partnering with private-sector partners to harness big data to improve traveler safety.

Lewis will assume this role in December.