What’s ahead for walking and active transportation in Columbus, across the state, and throughout the US? This plenary will hear from a moderated panel discussion of decision-makers who are at the forefront of shaping our communities and defining our mobility opportunities.
About the Moderator
Update: Toks Omishakin, 43, of Nashville, TN has been appointed as the new director of the California Department of Transportation. He will start this new journey late October 2019. Omishakin has been Deputy Commissioner for Environment and Planning Bureau at the Tennessee Department of Transportation since 2011. He was director of Healthy Living Initiatives in the Nashville Mayor’s Office from 2008 to 2011. Omishakin earned a Master of Arts degree in Urban and Regional Planning from Jackson State University.
In October of 2011, Toks Omishakin was appointed Assistant Commissioner and Chief of Environment and Planning at the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT). In this position, he leads TDOT’s continued success in establishing environmental, multi-modal and transportation planning policies necessary to make it one of the best state DOT’s in the country. He is responsible for the bureau’s administrative and project budget that exceeds $300 million annually. He leads the activities of the divisions of Environmental Services, Long-Range Planning, and Multimodal Transportation Resources. In 2014, he was promoted to Deputy Commissioner at TDOT.
Prior to joining TDOT, he served as the Director of Healthy Living Initiatives in the Office of Mayor – Karl Dean in Nashville, Tennessee. There he led efforts to develop Metro Nashville’s – Complete Streets Policy and helped establish a more balanced approach to transportation planning and design for the city. He also spearheaded the creation of two Bicycle Sharing programs (Nashville BCycle and Nashville Green Bikes) for the city. He was the Mayor’s liaison to several organizations and boards created to improve livability, the built environment, and transportation. Omishakin has been a speaker and presenter at several national and international conferences and his work has been published in The American Journal of Preventative Medicine and profiled in The Wall Street Journal, HBO Documentaries and Newsweek magazine.
He was appointed by Governor Bill Haslam to the Board of the Tennessee Tombigbee Waterway Authority in 2012 and the Governor’s Rural Development Task Force in 2015. He also serves on the Board of Directors at America Walks, the Civil Engineering and Environment Advisory Board at Tennessee Tech University and is Co-Chair of the Tennessee Regions Roundtable Network. He is an active member of the American Planning Association (APA), and the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE). He holds a Master’s Degree in Urban and Regional Planning (MURP) with concentrations in transportation planning and urban design from Jackson State University, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Technology from Mississippi Valley State University.
About the Panel
State Rep. Randi Clites (D-Ravenna) is a proven leader and tireless advocate for her community. She currently represents Ohio’s 75th House District, which includes much of central and southern Portage County.
A grassroots advocate at heart, Rep. Clites began her activism when her son was diagnosed with a rare genetic bleeding disorder—then leukemia—at a young age. She has since dedicated herself to giving back to the community that has given her so much, fighting to increase access to quality, affordable healthcare, improve community services and make Ohio a national leader in advanced energy technology.
Rep. Clites has worked as Associate Director of the Northern Ohio Hemophilia Foundation, Advocacy Coordinator for the Ohio Bleeding Disorders Council and has represented Ohio through the Association of Maternal and Child Health Family Scholar Program.
Clites served on the 2006 Legislative Task Force on the Future Funding of the state’s Title V program, where she fought for Ohio’s most vulnerable children. She has also served as Chair of the Parent Advisory Council. Clites received the Advocate of the Year award from the National Hemophilia Foundation for her continued work to increase awareness at the local, state and national levels.
In addition, she has been an active volunteer in her community, working with Akron Children’s Hospital, Portage County Big Brothers and Sisters and as a long-time softball coach in her community.
Randi, her husband Matt, her son Colton, and their two dogs are lifelong residents of Portage County.
Prior to his appointment as Chief Engineer, he served 7 years as District 11’s Deputy Director, he served the department as a Regional Projects Manager for ODOT’s Northeast Ohio’s Real Estate Office in Akron. He also served as Production Administrator for District 11 for over 5 years.
Prior to his career in ODOT, Lloyd worked for the City of Akron Bureau of Engineering, the Summit County Engineer’s office, 4 different Engineering Design firms and was a full time professor at the Kent State University Tuscarawas Campus in the Engineering Technology Department.
MacAdam graduated from the University of Akron in 1985 with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering. In addition to being a professional engineer, MacAdam also has his professional surveyor’s license and was a 2008 graduate of Ohio’s Certified Public Manager Program.
He and his wife, Carol, reside in New Philadelphia, Ohio and have raised four sons and are the proud grandparents of 4 wonderful grandchildren.
Mertz served as the First Assistant Attorney General under Mike DeWine in the Attorney General’s Office, where she oversaw both the legal and administrative operations of the office.
She has extensive legal experience in both the private and public sectors, having practiced law at a large multi-national firm.
Mertz also served as chief of staff to Mike DeWine while he was Lt. Governor; as the legislative director to Congressman Bob McEwen; in the office of legislative affairs in the White House; and worked with the Department of Natural Resources while working for Ohio Gov. George V. Voinovich.
Mertz is an avid sailor and outdoorsperson.
An Ohio native and long-time Warren County resident, Senator Steve Wilson has built a career of dedicated service to both his community and his profession. From the time he was honorably discharged as a Naval Officer in 1975, Senator Wilson focused his efforts on an entry-level position at Lebanon Citizens National Bank (LCNB) and public service in his community.
Forty-one years later, Mr. Wilson is the recently retired CEO of LCNB Corp. and LCNB National Bank. He continues in his position of chairman of the board. Although he has stepped away from his daily professional responsibilities, he continues to participate in important positions of service in Warren County and southwestern Ohio.
Senator Wilson has always sought to give back to the community, making it a better place to live, work and raise a family. He believes that quality education and schools, as well as responsible community planning and creating good-paying jobs, are the tenets to growing a strong living and working environment for all Ohioans.
Throughout Senator Wilson’s career in both the business and volunteer sectors, one practice has been consistent: he has never assumed that he understood all of the workings of any particular organization. When he made a commitment, he would immerse himself in learning everything he could about that group. A prime example of his willingness to learn was his accepting an entry-level position as a teller at the LCNB.
Senator Wilson and his wife, Jill, live in Maineville. They have four children and five grandchildren and are active members of the Otterbein United Methodist Church.