Assistant Deputy Secretary

Joel Nilsestuen, assistant deputy secretary

Joel Nilsestuen serves as the Assistant Deputy Secretary at the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT). In this role, he leads government relations, communication, and stakeholder engagement for the department. WisDOT is one of the largest state agencies, wi​th more than 3,200 employees and a biennial budget of more than $6 billion. The department supports all modes of transportation, including state highways, local roads, railroads, public transit systems, airports, and harbors. In addition, the department includes the Division of Motor Vehicles, which serves approximately 50,000 customers each week, and the Division of State Patrol that enforces laws and assists motorist throughout the state.

Before joining WisDOT, Joel led government relations and co​mmunity outreach for the University Wisconsin-Whitewater. He previously served as the executive director of the Wisconsin Workforce Development Association and worked in the legislature as a legislative and policy director.

Joel graduated from St. Olaf College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science. He and his wife live in Madison and have two young children.​​

You can​ reach the Office of the Secretary at (608) 266-1114 or DOTExec@dot.wi.gov​.​​