Obama taps Charlotte mayor for Transportation chief

"I know Anthony's experience will make him an outstanding Transportation secretary,” Obama said. “He's got the respect of his peers across the country. And as a consequence, I think that he’s going to be extraordinarily effective."

Obama cited Foxx's support for transportation investment in Charlotte during his tenure as mayor, particularly public transit projects like light rail and streetcars.

"When Anthony became mayor in 2009, Charlotte, like the rest of the country, was going through a bruising economic crisis," Obama said. "But the city has managed to turn things around. The economy is growing. There are more jobs, more opportunity. And if you ask Anthony how that happened, he’ll tell you that one of the reasons is that Charlotte made one of the largest investments in transportation in the city’s history." "

Prior to the announcement of Foxx as his DOT pick, Obama had come under criticism from normally supportive groups like the Congressional Black Caucus for not appointing more African-Americans to positions in his Cabinet.

Foxx, who is black, will become the second African-American member of Obama’s Cabinet if he is confirmed, joining Attorney General Eric Holder.

For more on Obama's nomination, click here.