Howard R. "Skip" Elliott
Acting Inspector General
U.S. Department of Transportation
Howard R. "Skip" Elliott was designated as the Acting Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Transportation Office of Inspector General by President Donald J. Trump on May 15, 2020.
Mr. Elliott was sworn in as the fifth Administrator of the Federal Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) following his unanimous confirmation by the U.S. Senate on October 5, 2017.
Prior to entering public service, Skip had a distinguished 40-year career in America’s freight railroad industry. For ten years, he served as Vice President of Public Safety, Health, and Environment for CSX Transportation (CSX). At CSX, his portfolio included hazardous materials transportation safety, homeland security, environmental compliance, crisis management, occupational health and safety, continuity of operations, and CSX’s Railroad Police Department. He also served on the board of directors for CSX IP LLC, a CSX subsidiary specializing in information storage.
Skip’s expertise is widely acknowledged in the field of transportation safety. Several of his notable accomplishments include the development of a severity risk index for releases of hazardous materials in rail transportation that has been utilized by the freight railroad industry for more than 20 years, and his role as a leading advocate and innovator in technology for emergency first responders that provides real-time information about the hazardous materials carried in trains. In recognition of his many professional contributions, he was awarded the Association of American Railroads prestigious Holden Profrock Award for lifetime achievement in hazardous materials transportation. In 2017, CSX dedicated the Howard R. "Skip" Elliott – Public Safety, Health and Environment Training Center in Atlanta, in his honor.
Skip is a graduate of Indiana University (IU) where he received undergraduate degrees in English and Forensic Studies. He received the College of Arts and Sciences Distinguished Alumni Award in 2020, and was awarded the University’s Bicentennial Medal in 2019. He also received the Department of Criminal Justice’s first ever Distinguished Alumni Award in 2009. Skip and his wife Jacqueline endow the Elliott Criminal Justice Careers Fund at IU to support undergraduate research for those looking to enter the criminal justice field. He holds a master’s degree in Criminal Justice Administration from Columbia Southern University where he was recognized as a University Famous Alumni in 2018.
A native of Elkhart, Indiana, Skip and his wife currently reside in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, where he is an avid cyclist.