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Doan Receives Prestigious Award for Border Work

GSA # 10481

April 1, 2008
Contact: Lindsey Willis, (202) 501-1231
lindsey.willis@gsa.gov

WASHINGTON – Lurita Doan, Administrator of the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), was awarded the prestigious, tri-national, “Friend of the Americas Award” by the Border Trade Alliance (BTA) for her support of and commitment to border trade, economic development and improved efficiencies at our nation's land border ports of entry.  The award was presented at the BTA International Conference 2008 in Washington, DC.

The Friend of the Americas award is presented every year to an individual who expresses views and establishes policies that improve the quality of life of border communities in North America though the facilitation of trade and commerce. Previous recipients include Tom Ridge, former Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, and then-Texas governor, George W. Bush.

Administrator Doan’s efforts have resulted in increased awareness and understanding among policymakers to the economic importance of trade, travel and commerce along the U.S.-Canada and U.S.-Mexico borders, according to the BTA. In addition, the transformative leadership initiatives Doan has instituted at GSA have resulted in a more streamlined and efficient system of federal infrastructure investment at our nations’ land ports of entry.

“Years of inattention coupled with explosive growth in North American trade have turned many of our nation’s ports of entry into parking lots where legitimate trade and travel is bogged down in mile-long delays that can extend for hours,” Doan said.  “We can do better and we must do better, so GSA is taking the lead in this effort. We are committed to building what we can, where we can, as fast as we can.”

Administrator Doan has made Land Ports of Entry one of GSA's top priorities. During the past 22 months, GSA has retooled its ability to design, build and maintain ports of entry and committed additional funding to push the best projects forward as quickly as possible.  As a result of GSA's efforts, a building boom is now underway along the northern and southern borders of the United States to build more inspection booths, lanes, bridges and other infrastructure to speed the secure flow of legitimate trade and travel.  For the first time in over a decade, GSA is simultaneously constructing four new Ports of Entry at Jackman, Maine; Calais, Maine; San Luis, Arizona; and Donna, Texas.  

Founded in 1986, the BTA is a grassroots, non-profit organization that serves as a forum for participants to address key issues affecting trade and economic development in North America. Working with entities in Canada, Mexico and the United States, the BTA advocates on behalf of policies and initiatives designed to improve border affairs and trade relations among the three nations.


 
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Did you know? Over $2 billion in trade cross our nation’s ports of entry every day.