Every year the award committee selects a well-known person as the Outstanding 50 event featured speaker. Please scroll down for information about our previous featured speakers.
Secretary Norman Y. Mineta is Global Vice Chairman of Hill & Knowlton based in its Washington, DC office. Secretary Mineta provides counsel and strategic advice to Hill & Knowlton clients on a wide range of business and political issues. He is well known for his work in the areas of transportation – including aviation, surface transportation, and infrastructure – and national security. He is recognized for his accomplishments in economic development, science and technology policy, foreign and domestic trade, budgetary issues and civil rights.
Secretary Mineta’s career in public service has been both distinguished and unique. For almost thirty years, he represented San Jose, California first on the City Council, then as Mayor, and then from 1975 to 1995 as a Member of Congress. Throughout that time, he was an advocate of the burgeoning technology industry.
Secretary Mineta served as the Chairman of the House Transportation and Public Works Committee from 1992 to 1994, after having chaired the Subcommittee on Aviation and the Subcommittee on Surface Transportation. He was the primary author of the groundbreaking ISTEA legislation – the Inter modal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991. In 2000, he was appointed by President Bill Clinton as the United States Secretary of Commerce.
Secretary Mineta was appointed Secretary of Transportation by President George W. Bush in 2001, where he served until 2006. Following the horrific terrorist acts of September 11, 2001, he guided the creation of the Transportation Security Administration – an agency with more than 65,000 employees – the largest mobilization of a new federal agency since World War II.
Recognized for his leadership, Secretary Mineta has received numerous awards, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom – our nation’s highest civilian honor – and the Wright Brothers Memorial Trophy, which is awarded for significant public service of enduring value to aviation in the United States. While in Congress, he was the co-founder of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus and Chair of the National Civil Aviation Review Commission in 1997