Cassandra Caldwell was named as executive director of the Arkansas Waterways Commission on Tuesday (Feb. 11).
Secretary of Commerce Mike Preston announced the appointment of Caldwell, who will replace Diedre Smith, who served as executive director since 2017.
“I am thrilled to have Cassandra here at the Arkansas Department of Commerce as our executive director of the Waterways Commission,” said Preston. “With 1,800 miles of navigable waterways, it is critical that our waterway transportation meets the needs of businesses and provides easy access to U.S. markets around the world. Her skills and experience are top notch and exactly what we need in this role.”
Caldwell, who comes to Arkansas from the Oklahoma Department of Transportation as their Administrative Programs Officer, will assume her new position Feb. 24.
She graduated from Rogers State University in Medical and Molecular Biology and also has an Associate of Science in Biology and Legal Studies. She has served in the U.S. Navy and is a certified Inland Maritime Port Manager.
“I am pleased the Arkansas Waterways Commission selected Cassandra Caldwell to serve our state under my administration,” said Gov. Asa Hutchinson. “She brings a great deal of expertise in inland waterway freight transportation, and I am confident she will be an asset to our state as she works to promote and protect our navigable rivers.”
The Arkansas Waterways Commission is the state agency responsible for developing, promoting and protecting waterborne transportation in Arkansas.
The commission also promotes economic development for ports on the five commercially navigable rivers of the state: The Arkansas, Mississippi, Ouachita, Red and White Rivers.