Senate Confirms Earl F. Gohl as ARC Federal Co-Chair
WASHINGTON, March 11, 2010—The U.S. Senate yesterday unanimously confirmed Earl F. Gohl as federal co-chair of the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC). He is the 11th federal co-chair to be appointed since ARC was established by Congress in 1965.
Gohl has 20 years of experience in Pennsylvania state and local government, having served in positions including executive assistant to the mayor of Harrisburg; elected member of the Harrisburg City Council; and deputy secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Community Affairs. As deputy secretary, Gohl awarded and administered $100 million annually in housing and community development programs benefiting communities within the Appalachian Region. He also managed several initiatives to strengthen the capacity of rural local governments to meet economic challenges. In 1996, Gohl was appointed to serve as special assistant, and then associate assistant secretary, of the U.S. Department of Labor.
In his confirmation hearing, Gohl said that he was honored by the trust President Obama had placed in him and that his objective as federal co-chair would be to ensure that each federal dollar expended by ARC was "an investment in the economic futures of Appalachian families that will generate a return for American taxpayers."
ARC is a regional economic development agency that represents a partnership of federal, state, and local government. It is composed of the governors of the 13 Appalachian states and the federal co-chair, who is appointed by the president. Local participation is provided through multi-county local development districts.
Each year ARC provides funding for several hundred projects in the Appalachian Region, in areas such as business development, education and job training, telecommunications, infrastructure, community development, housing, and transportation.