Gov. Terry Branstad on Wednesday named former Iowa Congressman Leonard Boswell to serve immediately as a member of the state Transportation Commission.
Branstad named Boswell to replace ex-state Sen. Tom Rielly, an Oskaloosa Democrat who resigned from the DOT Commission due to a business-related conflict of interest. Boswell, whose appointment is subject to confirmation by the Iowa Senate, will fulfill the remainder of Rielly’s term -- which concludes April 30, 2017.
“I’m pleased today to appoint Leonard to the Iowa Transportation Commission,” Branstad said in a statement. “As a veteran, former state legislator and United States Congressman, Leonard’s life has been one of service to our state and country. I’m confident he’ll be a tremendous asset to the commission.”
Boswell, 80, who was active on transportation issues during his tenure in the U.S. House, joins a seven-member commission that develops comprehensive transportation policies and plans for the state, identifies transportation needs, and develops programs to meet these needs.
Boswell served three terms in the Iowa Senate from 1984 to 1996 -- including being Senate president from 1993 to 1996. He also was the Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor in 1994 with gubernatorial candidate Bonnie Campbell in Iowa.
Boswell was elected to the U.S. Congress in 1997, where he served until 2013. He was drafted into U.S. Army as a private, where he earned two Distinguished Flying Crosses, Soldier’s Medal, two Bronze Stars, Air Medal with the “V” Device and rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel.
Boswell -- who also is serving as a co-leader of Branstad’s Home Base Iowa initiative to recruit military veterans to return to Iowa for job opportunities – resides with his wife, Dody, on a farm near Lamoni.