The South Carolina Department of Transportation Commission has appointed Justin P. Powell as secretary of transportation following the retirement of Christy A. Hall, P.E. in March 2024.
Powell is currently the SCDOT’s chief operating officer and has managed the day-to-day operations of SCDOT including its $5 billion construction program and maintenance of the nation’s fourth-largest state highway system. He joined SCDOT in 2019 as the deputy secretary for finance and administration, a role that made him responsible for the agency’s $2.7 billion budget.
Powell oversaw the growth of the construction program from $3 billion to $5 billion. He was promoted to chief of staff in 2022. Before working for SCDOT, Powell worked as an assistant county administrator for Horry County and has worked at other government agencies including Dorchester County, the city of Greenville and in Fairfax County, Va.
“Our most important asset at SCDOT is our people and I am committed to supporting our employees as they continue to diligently serve our great state,” Powell said. “To me, there is no higher calling to serve the people of South Carolina and I look forward to the bright future ahead.”
Christy Hall, secretary of the South Carolina Department of Transportation, plans to retire from her position effective March 31. Appointed by former Governor Nikki Haley (R), Hall has spent roughly a decade as SCDOT secretary out of a nearly 30 year career in state government.
“It has been an honor and a privilege to work alongside the men and women of SCDOT to serve the people of South Carolina,” she said in a statement. “I am thankful … for the opportunity to serve as the agency head during the past decade when South Carolina has experienced unprecedented levels of road and bridge work in every county of the state. I also want to thank the South Carolina General Assembly for recognizing the need to boost funding for infrastructure and to continuously evaluate those funding levels in order to keep pace with rapidly evolving business, residential and economic development needs.”
The SCDOT recruited Hall during her final year in the civil engineering program at Clemson University. She has served the state continuously since graduating college in a variety of roles, including front line experience in design, project management, construction management, and road and bridge maintenance before moving into district and headquarters leadership roles including deputy secretary for finance and administration, deputy secretary for engineering, and eventually SCDOT secretary. Learn more about the SCDOT here