MDOT State Highway Administration - Office of Communications

The Office of Communications communicates MDOT SHA's mission and activities to all audiences. The team's mission is to provide timely and accurate information to the public about highway projects, traffic and roadway conditions, special programs, and agency policies and achievements. The Office of Communications, also known as OC, acts as a liaison between MDOT SHA and the Maryland Department of Transportation Secretary's Office/Public Affairs Office as well as the Governor's Press Office.

The Office of Communications is responsible for media relations, crisis communications, public affairs strategic planning and counsel, publications, community outreach, customer service, special events and employee communications for MDOT SHA offices statewide. The team works closely with print, broadcast and online media to keep the public informed. OC handles approximately 3,000 media inquiries each year. Office members coordinate press conferences and educational campaigns. The staff also writes speeches, press releases and a safety focused newsletter for the public.

Team members also manage the writing and production of MDOT SHA's employee newsletter, The Interchange. It informs employees of SHA's goals and activities, motivates them, and reinforces their role in customer service.

The Office of Communications also handles customer inquiries over the phone, through e-mail and through social media.

One of the main functions of the Office of Communications is to inform motorists about highway construction. The team generates press releases and letters to elected officials for every project that affects motorists. For a major project, the office produces informational brochures and attends community meetings. In addition, the team creates and maintains MDOT SHA’s social media presence where a variety of informational materials are shared.

Members of the Office of Communications are on-call 24 hours a day and serve as public information officers during emergency operations.

OC also promotes the Coordinated Highway Action Response Team (CHART) Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) program and Statewide Operations Center (SOC) activities.