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Charles A. Zelle

Commissioner, Minnesota Department of Transportation

Charles A. Zelle was appointed Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Transportation on December 15, 2012, by Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton and began on January 15, 2013.

Zelle came to MnDOT from Jefferson Lines, an intercity bus company with routes in 13 heartland states from Minnesota to Texas. He worked there for more than 20 years, and served as President and Chief Executive Officer. Currently he is the Chair of the Jefferson Lines Board of Directors although he is no longer an employee with any management authority. In 2012, Zelle served on the Governor's Transportation Finance Advisory Committee.

Zelle's current community and civic activities include, Member of the Partnership for Regional Opportunities; Chair of the Board of the Jerome Foundation; Member of the Working Group of the Itasca Project; Member of the Board of Directors of the Guthrie Theater; Member of the Executive Committee of the University of Minnesota Center for Transportation Studies; and Member of the Board of Directors of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. Zelle's past community and civic activities included being the Chair/President of the Boards of the following organizations: Minneapolis Club, Guthrie Theater, Meet Minneapolis, Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce, American Bus Association and Itasca Project Transportation Initiative and St. Paul Academy.

He has been recognized for his work in transportation policy as a recipient of the George Rucker Award by the Community Transportation Association in 2009 and the Ray L. Lappegaard Distinguished Service Award by Center of Transportation Studies in 2012.

Born and raised in St. Paul, Zelle received a B.A. from Bates College and a MBA from the Yale School of Management.