Tara has a set of moxie skills and traits that she packs up and takes with her in whatever professional or volunteer position she finds herself in. She uses her moxie for public benefit and to raise awareness of the history of the Hudson Valley and that we all have a role to play in making our society better.
She grew up on Byrdcliff in Woodstock, the first art colony in America, where she experienced a unique childhood surrounded by painters, sculptors, musicians, great craft artisans, and composers. Her first job was selling marzipan at the Turnau Opera House.
Much of Tara’s professional life has centered on working for New York State, translating its unique history to be relevant to those who live here.
In 2021, Tara retired as the Chief Operating and Executive Officer of the New York State Bridge Authority, the Hudson Valley-based public benefit transportation authority. She was the first woman to serve in that capacity.
Tara launched the Authority into the new era of all-electronic tolling. She initiated the largest capital project and financing plan in the Authority's 88-year history and significantly increased the use of minority and women-owned enterprises. She created a workplace safety culture change, which drastically reduced workplace injuries.
Her additional project initiatives include Skywalk at the Rip Van Winkle Bridge--now a prominent New York tourism destination linking and interpreting the connection of the founders of the Hudson River School.
In 2009, she became the executive director of the New York State Quadricentennial, responsible for developing and implementing the statewide strategic plan for the historical commemoration of New York’s 400th anniversary. She coordinated all New York State Legacy Projects for the Quadricentennial, such as the Walkway Over the Hudson. As part of the Quadricentennial’s signature events, she oversaw River Day, the largest nautical event in Hudson Valley history.
Ms. Sullivan currently serves as chair of the Dutchess County Ethics Board, the board of trustees for Historic Bridges of the Hudson Valley, and the Thomas Cole National Historic Site board of directors.
This episode of Main Street Moxie is sponsored by Elyse Harney Real Estate and North East Ford. For more information about Tara and our sponsors, visit the Moxie website.