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Dixon Selected to Lead North Carolina Ferry Division

John E. "Jed" Dixon has been selected as the new Ferry Division director.
MANNS HARBOR – John E. “Jed” Dixon, a 21-year veteran of the North Carolina Ferry Division, will become the division’s new director effective today. 

“I’m honored to be offered this opportunity,” Dixon said. “I’ve been with the division a long time, so I know just how important the Ferry Division is to the people in this area. I’m happy to be stepping into this role so I can put my experience to use, providing the best service we can for all our customers.”

Dixon has served as the division’s deputy director since 2012 and its interim director since August. 

He will oversee an organization that operates seven year-round ferry routes across the Currituck Sound, Pamlico Sound, Cape Fear River, Neuse River, Pamlico River and Hatteras Inlet, as well as a seasonal passenger ferry route between Hatteras and Ocracoke. The division operates 23 ferries and employs about 400 full-time and 100 seasonal workers. It is the second largest ferry system in the nation. 

The 48-year-old Manteo native said his top priorities will be to improve the system’s efficiency, maintain ferry routes, and provide dependable service for the commuters, tourists and others who rely upon the ferries. He said he’s also a strong believer in advocating for his staff.

“Our employees can expect to get a supportive leader who will make sure we are a professional organization and that everyone will have the tools to do their jobs successfully,” he said. 

Julie White, NCDOT’s deputy secretary for Multimodal Transportation, selected Dixon for the role and said his institutional knowledge and experience made him a great candidate to lead the division. 

“Jed has a keen understanding of the challenges facing the system including recruiting, developing and retaining a strong workforce, maintaining our vessels, facilities, and shore side assets, and keeping our routes safe and operable amidst many environmental challenges,” White said. “He has great vision for the future of the division and the investments needed to fulfill our mission of robust, reliable service.”

White also praised Dixon’s leadership during hurricane evacuations and post storm response, particularly his partnership with Hyde County when Hurricane Dorian struck the coast in September 2019 and the months long rebuild of Ocracoke Island as labor, materials and debris were moved by ferries. 

Dixon replaces Harold Thomas​, who retired last July. 

Dixon has a Bachelor of Science in Marine Transportation from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, N.Y. Aside from his time with the Ferry Division, Dixon has worked as a general contractor and was the captain of an offshore supply boat supporting oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico. He lives with his family in Manteo.


5/3/2024 12:56 PM