Ted Nguyen, MPA


VACOC Advisory Board Member

Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA)

Ted Nguyen is a nationally recognized public relations and communications professional with more than 30 years of developing and executing cost-effective programs. He is the senior manager for Diversity Outreach & Inclusion at the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA).

Nguyen began at OCTA as the organization’s spokesman and media relations manager, then became the department manager for public outreach and media relations. Nguyen’s ongoing work with diverse business leaders for the past decade have provided meaningful opportunities to help enhance transportation improvement projects and travel options that have also netted national recognition.

His most-recent accomplishment includes being named by the Asian Business Association of Orange County as its Corporate Partner of the Year in 2023. Nguyen was honored as the National Diversity Professional of the Year in 2022 by the premier marketing and communications organization worldwide, Ragan, in Chicago for his diversity work at OCTA and for leading efforts to combat anti-Asian hate. Under his leadership, OCTA also won national awards from Ragan for its effective diversity program and special events.

Nguyen won the industry’s most prestigious award, the Silver Anvil, in New York City from the Public Relations Society of America, the world’s largest professional organization of communications professionals. PR News also named Nguyen as its PR Professional of the Year. He also has garnered local, statewide and national awards for his social media, marketing communications and media relations programs.

As a communications strategist, Ted’s work has generated numerous news coverage from regional news media along with national and international media outlets such as CNN, FOX, CBS, NBC, ABC, USA Today, the Washington Post, the New York Times, the BBC, the Guardian, South China Morning Post, France 24 and many others.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Nguyen, along with four other Vietnamese American business and community leaders, cofounded Nailing It For America that collected and delivered approximately $30 million of personal protective equipment and more than 80,000 restaurant meals to healthcare professionals, front-line workers and vulnerable people. He also led the work to help fight against anti-Asian hate.

Before coming to OCTA, Nguyen worked as a strategic communications consultant for several award-winning public relations agencies in Salt Lake City and Laguna Hills, a communications director for a U.S. Congressman in Washington, D.C., a spokesman for the Salt Lake City Mayor and a director of community and government relations for a Utah’s second-largest city.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in strategic communications with a double major in journalism and public relations from Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. Nguyen also earned a master’s degree from BYU’s Marriott School of Management with an emphasis in strategic planning and international relations.

Nguyen lives in Laguna Niguel, Calif. with his family and two rescue dogs.