President taps Macquarie banker Gribbin as infrastructure adviser

  • Gribbin to focus on infrastructure policy at White House
  • Resigned from consulting job in January
  • Infrastructure a major pillar of Trump’s plans

David James “DJ” Gribbin, a former Macquarie banker and transportation infrastructure specialist, has joined Donald Trump’s administration as a special assistant to the president for infrastructure policy.

The White House announced the appointments of Gribbin and other senior staff on Feb. 28. The statement confirms an earlier PE HUB report that Gribbin was joining the Trump administration to work on infrastructure. No details about the role were provided.

“We have assembled a best-in-class team of policy advisers to drive President Trump’s bold plan for job creation and economic growth,” Gary Cohn, director of the U.S. National Economic Council, said in a statement. “With their diverse backgrounds and deep knowledge of key policy issues, they will make significant contributions to the nation.”

Trump also named Jeremy Katz deputy assistant to the president and deputy director of the National Economic Council. Katz, whose role with the administration has been known since January, was a managing director and member of the office of the chairman at GCM Grosvenor.

He previously served in the White House chief of staff’s office as special assistant for policy to President George W. Bush and senior policy adviser to Commerce Secretary Donald Evans.

Earlier on Katz was an analyst at William Blair & Co.

Gribbin has extensive government experience in infrastructure, but he also worked in the private sector, at Macquarie and Koch Industries. Most recently he worked at HDR Inc, an engineering, architecture and consulting firm.

Gribbin, 53, did not respond to a LinkedIn request for comment. Jackie Fox, a spokeswoman for HDR, said Gribbin resigned from HDR and left Jan. 6. The White House communications team did not respond to several requests for comment.

Gribbin has extensive experience in transportation infrastructure. He spent more than six years at Macquarie, prior to which he for two years was general counsel at the U.S. Department of Transportation. He also was chief counsel at the Federal Highway Administration from 2003 to 2005, and spent six years at Koch.

Gribbin was nominated by the George W. Bush administration for the role of general counsel of DoT. During his Senate nomination hearing, in 2007, he laid out his thinking on privatization of U.S. infrastructure.

Donald Trump hugs a U.S. flag as he takes the stage for a campaign town hall meeting in Derry, New Hampshire, on Aug. 19, 2015. Photo courtesy Reuters/Brian Snyder