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2012 Most Influential Women Honoree: Becky Baltz

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On staff in varied leadership positions at the Missouri Department of Transportation for 28 years, Becky Baltz has served as a district engineer since 2006.

Baltz, who received a 2010 Most Influential Women Award from Joplin Tri-State Business Journal, Springfield Business Journal’s sister publication, was serving in the Joplin District in May 2011 when the city of Joplin was ravaged by a tornado.

“In the immediate aftermath, we worked long and hard to make sure all state roads were open and passable and assisted the city of Joplin with the same,” Baltz says.

“We rebuilt the signing and signal installations throughout Joplin, returning traffic to a normal condition as quickly as possible.”

Since June 2011, Baltz has served as district engineer for MoDOT’s 21-county Southwest District, a change brought about by MoDOT’s major restructuring dubbed The Bolder Plan.

In that role, her duties include managing an internal annual budget of $78 million.

“I led the district through the process of creating a new management team, with current employees reapplying for positions,” she says.

“As part of the restructuring, because of declining revenues, I have had to make a significant reduction in facilities and equipment while still operating a transportation system that includes 6,500 miles and hundreds of bridges,” she adds.

Among her community roles, Baltz serves on the boards of the Springfield Area Transportation Study Organization and the Joplin Metropolitan Organization Board and is a member of the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce’s Transportation Committee.

Baltz takes professional pride in providing solid customer service and responding quickly and fairly to questions and concerns.

“We may not be able to build every project requested, but we can often make a small improvement that helps alleviate a problem or concern and serves the taxpayers well,” Baltz says. “Missourians entrust us to use their fuel tax and other revenues wisely to provide the best transportation system possible. I take that assignment very seriously (and) constantly emphasize safety for the traveling public.”

Baltz encourages Southwest District employees to do their best on all work-related tasks, setting high expectations and rewarding innovation while preserving MoDOT’s culture of treating others with respect, dignity and kindness.

“This holds true in tough times, like our recent downsizing, and in the good times when we get to build many needed transportation projects,” she says. “I want us to be professionals and do the job but keep the personal touch.”

Click here for full coverage of the 2012 Most Influential Women.

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