Gov. Asa Hutchinson on Thursday appointed Marie Holder of Little Rock to the Arkansas State Highway Commission, filling a vacancy left by Tom Schueck, who died March 3.
Holder will serve the remainder of Schueck's appointment, which will expire Jan. 14, 2021. Her reappointment will begin January 15, 2021 and will expire on Jan. 14, 2031.
"Throughout her career, Marie has demonstrated that she is a sharp businesswoman with a diversity of skills and talents," Hutchinson said in a news release. "She has a passion for her community, public service, and leadership. I have known Marie for many years, and I have seen firsthand how much she values the development of Arkansas’s economy and the improvement of Arkansas’s infrastructure. Each of these things has thoroughly equipped her to be the next state highway commissioner, and I am confident that she will be an excellent fit in this critical role."
Holder is president of Holder Consulting, a position that she has held since 2015. She is the governor's top political fundraiser and head of his political action committee, ASA PAC. In comments at the press conference, she thanked Governor Hutchinson for his "trust and confidence."
"I am honored to serve the people of Arkansas and Governor Asa Hutchinson," Holder said. "As the mother of two children — one of whom is a newly licensed sixteen-year-old — I will put safety first in every decision I make. As a businesswoman, I will work to promote our transportation system's fiscal responsibility and transparency.
"It is a great honor to fulfill the term of Tom Schueck. Chairman Schueck was an excellent advocate for the people of Arkansas and the second district."
Schueck was chairman of the commission at the time of his death. Earlier this week, the commission elected Robert S. Moore Jr. as its new chairman and Dalton A. "Alec" Farmer Jr. as vice chairman.
Holder comes to the board as the governor campaigns for Issue 1, a proposed constitutional amendment that goes before voters on Nov. 3. The amendment would make a half-cent sales tax permanent to fund improvements to Arkansas roads.
Holder has served as a board member and consumer representative on the Arkansas State Medical Board and a fellow of the Federation of State Medical Boards since 2016. She also worked as the executive director and communications director of the Republican Party of Arkansas and as the deputy press secretary for former U.S. Sen. Trent Lott, R-Miss.
Holder is the chairwoman of the board at Second Presbyterian Preschool and a volunteer with Arkansas Children's Hospital Auxiliary and Girl Scouts of America.