Ms Chikage Ogi, head of Japan’s Conservative Party, has been appointed Minister Land, Infrastructure & Transport in the new coalition government which took office on December 5.

Sergey N Gapeev has been named acting Vice-Minister at Russia’s Ministry of Railways responsible for passenger traffic, repair and maintenance of carriage stock, following the retirement of Nikolai A Kondratenko. Vladimir N Pustovoi has been appointed head of RZD’s locomotive department, succeeding V Chorny. Nikolai M Ogarkov has been appointed Vice-President of the Sakhalin Railway, V I Ossin Vice-President of the Far Eastern Railway and K M Simonov Vice-President of the South Eastern Railway.

Jolene Molitoris announced on December 11 that she was stepping down as Federal Railroad Administrator after eight years, with effect from December 31; she joins GIS and GPS technology provider GeoFocus Inc and consultancy SuccessAdvocates Inc as President &CEO on January 2 2001. At the FRA, Deputy Administrator Jack Wells has been named Acting Administrator.

Mafika Mkwanazi becomes Managing Director of South Africa’s state owned transport holding company Transnet on January 15, replacing Saki Macozoma. Louise Tager has been reappointed to chair the Transnet board for two years. Tshidi Mokgabudi, Colin Hall, Yvonne Muthien, and Mashudu Ramano have been appointed as non-executive directors.

David Franks is stepping down as Managing Director of British franchisee First North Western, to head Govia’s New Southern Railway selected for the replacement Network South Central franchise (p16).

Lyndon ’Tuck’ Wilson Jr has been named interim replacement for Sound Transit’s light rail programme director Paul Bay, responsible for the Seattle light rail project.

Kurt Bodewig has been appointed Federal Transport Minister in Germany, replacing Reinhard Klimmt with effect from November 20.

Craig Wallace has been appointed Chief Executive of the Australian division of rail and bus operator National Express.

Raymond John Turnell has been appointed as Senior Vice-President of Singapore MRT, taking charge of the Engineering Division and the Business Development department.

Karl-Friedrich Rausch has joined the German Railway Board as member for research and technology, succeeding Roland Heinisch, who moved to DB Netz in July.

Under a restructuring to create separate Product and Industrial Business Units at Alstom Transport, Martyn Vaughan moves to Paris as Vice President, Industrial, for the Passenger business. He was Managing Director of the British assembly plant in Birmingham, where Operations Director Simon Roberts will head the Industrial Business Unit. The former Vice President, Product Marketing, of the Passenger business, Bernard Lepinay, has been appointed to head Alstom’s EMU Product Business Unit in Birmingham.

Bob Kiley takes up his post as Commissioner of Transport for London on January 1 2001.

San Fransico Bay Area’s Metropolitan Transportation Commission has appointed Steve Heminger as Executive Director.

Dieter Klump has taken over from Peter Witt as President of the German Railway Industry Association, VDB.

Richard A Johnson is has been named Chief Operating Officer for fare collection supplier Cubic Transportation Systems.

Assistant General Manager Pete Gentle has resigned from Philadelphia urban rail operator PATCO, the seventh manager to quit since July.