JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A former Unalaska mayor has been appointed to the new position of executive director of the Alaska ferry system.

Shirley Marquardt is scheduled to start work next month. She will be based in Ketchikan.

The state transportation department says the position will provide direction to the system and oversee operations, engineering, marketing and program development.

Gov. Bill Walker, in a release, says Marquardt will help move the ferry system to a stronger business model.

Marquardt currently serves as Walker's director of boards and commissions.