Secretary of Transportation
Omer Osman was appointed Transportation Secretary by Gov. JB Pritzker in 2019. His role as secretary reflects three decades of experience at the Illinois Department of Transportation in engineering and management, most recently serving as deputy secretary.
Osman began his career at IDOT as a civil engineer in 1989. As he acquired experience at the department, he progressively took on more challenging leadership roles, starting at the district level and then moving into executive management. Moving through the IDOT ranks gives him unique insight into department operations and scope, funding challenges and opportunities, as well as the need for strategic maintenance and infrastructure growth to support economic development and travel for Illinois residents.
Under his leadership, IDOT continues to champion diversity. Osman played an integral part on past statewide recruitment efforts to diversify personnel in all state job classifications. He remains an advocate for eliminating barriers and increasing access to IDOT partnerships with Disadvantaged Business Enterprises and minority- and female-owned businesses.
His vast experience in transportation includes the management and advancement of complex projects and the assessment of current resources to inform funding and programmatic needs to create a multimodal system for the 21st century. He fosters a culture of innovation and stresses the importance of IDOT leading the nation in best practices, including programs and initiatives that position the agency as one of the most innovative departments of transportation in the country.
Some notable projects during his leadership include the new Mississippi River bridge and relocation of Illinois 3 in East St. Louis, the Interstate 74/155 interchange reconstruction in Morton, the Illinois 13 expansion between Carbondale and Interstate 57 in Marion, the rehabilitation of the U.S. 150 Illinois River bridge in Peoria, and the I-74 Mississippi River bridge in the Quad Cities.
A native of the Sudan, Osman came to the United States to study civil engineering at Southern University and A & M College in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He also earned a master’s in civil engineering with an emphasis in construction management at Bradley University in Peoria.
In addition to holding licensure as a professional engineer, Osman is a graduate of the Professional Advancement of Career Engineers program and is a member of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials policy and highways committees.