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The Source for Public Transportation News and Analysis July 15, 2011
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Howard Chapman, Christine Wilkinson
CHARLESTON, SC—Howard Chapman, founding executive director of the Charleston Area Regional Transportation Authority (CARTA), retired June 29. Chapman served as interim executive director of CARTA from its founding in 1997 until 1999, when he was named to the position on a permanent basis.

He helped with the transition of Charleston’s transit system from its operation by South Carolina Electric & Gas to the formation of CARTA, and earlier was director of traffic and transportation with the City of Charleston and County of Charleston.

Chapman chaired the Charleston County Transportation Committee from 1999 to 2006 and continues to serve on the committee.

CARTA named Christine Wilkinson interim executive director. She has served as CARTA’s transit administrator since its founding, and from 1995 to 1997 she served the city of Charleston in the same capacity.

Fernando Ferrer, Jonathan A. Ballan
NEW YORK, NY—Fernando Ferrer and Jonathan A. Ballan have joined the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority Board of Directors.

Ferrer was a member of the New York City Council from 1982 to 1987 before being elected Bronx borough president, a position he held until 2001. In 2005, he became the first Latino to win the Democratic nomination for New York City mayor. Ferrer is co-chairman and a partner at Mercury, a public strategy firm. In addition, he serves as a director of Sterling Bancorp, Sterling National Bank, and the Regional Plan Association.

Ballan is a member of the law firm of Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C., where he heads the firm’s New York Public Finance practice group. He has also served in a variety of government positions.

Michael Lam
NEW YORK, NY—Michael Lam, P.E., has joined HDR's Manhattan office as Transit Systems section manager.

Lam joins HDR after 14 years with STV, where he was an associate and traction power manager. Before STV, he led a staff of 40 engineers as division engineer with MTA New York City Transit.

Jim Robinson, Stuart Strickland, Beth Kuntz
PITTSBURGH, PA—The Allegheny County Transit Council, an independent, rider-based advisory council, recently elected a new slate of officers: Jim Robinson, president; Stuart Strickland, vice president; and Beth Kuntz, treasurer.

The council works closely with the Port Authority of Allegheny County on transit issues and advocates for public transportation in the region.

Lynne Griffith
LAKEWOOD, WA—The Evans School of Public Affairs at the University of Washington honored Lynne Griffith, chief executive officer of Pierce Transit, with its first Executive Master of Public Administration Outstanding Alumnus Award. Griffith is a 2009 graduate of the school.

The award recognizes the achievements and exceptional leadership of an alumnus, with particular attention to how the Evans School and the Executive MPA curriculum made a notable difference in the recipient’s work.

Steven Lorek, Michael Meroney
OMAHA, NE—HDR has promoted Steven Lorek, P.E., to Eastern Region rail manager, based in Cincinnati, and Michael Meroney to Texas Gulf Coast Transportation Business Group manager, based in Houston.

Lorek has been with HDR for 13 years. As the firm’s local railroad lead in Cincinnati, he was primarily focused on management and delivery of railroad projects for Class I railroads, short line railroads, public agencies, and private industry.

Meroney joined HDR in 2008 and has more than 22 years of experience with transportation design and planning projects. He served as deputy project manager for HDR's Houston Metro North Corridor transit design-build contract for Houston’s Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County.

Kristin Jacobs, Steven Abrams
POMPANO BEACH, FL—Broward County Commissioner Kristin Jacobs was elected chair of the South Florida Regional Transportation Authority Governing Board and Palm Beach County Commissioner Steven Abrams was elected vice chair. Both terms begin July 1 and run for one year.

Jacobs has represented District 2 on the Broward County Commission since 1998. Abrams has served on the Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners representing District 4 since 2009 and was elected in 2010 to a full four-year term.

Dick Riddell, Alan Wapner
SAN BERNARDINO, CA—The Omnitrans Board of Directors has elected Yucaipa Mayor Dick Riddell as its chair, effective July 1. He succeeds Penny Lilburn, mayor pro tem of Highland.

Riddell is a 16-year member of the board who took over as vice chair in March 2011 following the resignation of Upland Mayor John Pomierski.

Ontario City Council Member Alan Wapner, an Omnitrans board member or alternate since 2000, was elected vice chair.

Carolyn Flowers
CHARLOTTE, NC—Carolyn Flowers, chief executive officer of the Charlotte Area Transit System, has been named one of the Charlotte Business Journal’s 25 Outstanding Business Women for 2011.

Flowers has almost 20 years experience working for transit agencies, including Los Angeles Metro, and joined CATS about 16 months ago.

Larry King
WASHINGTON, DC—Larry King has joined Delon Hampton & Associates, Chartered, as senior vice president, business development.

King has 30 years experience in consulting engineering, management, and client relations, serving in a number of leadership positions with local governments and engineering consulting firms.

Rick Pilgrim
DENVER, CO—Rick Pilgrim, P.E., has joined HDR as a vice president and senior project manager in the transportation business group. Located in the Denver office, he will have project and business development responsibilities for all transportation market sectors in the west and central regions.

Pilgrim comes to HDR from URS, where he served most recently as vice president and state and local market sector manager for the mountain region.

With URS since 1983, Pilgrim also served as Colorado transportation department manager, national transit and rail business line manager, central region manager, west region manager, and office manager.

For APTA, he is a member of the Light Rail Transit Technical Forum, Major Capital Investment Planning Subcommittee, and Policy and Planning Committee.

Debra A. Johnson
SAN FRANCISCO, CA—The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) has named Debra A. Johnson as its acting executive director/chief executive officer. She succeeds Nathaniel P. Ford Sr., who stepped down from the post.

Johnson currently serves SFMTA as director of administration, taxis and accessible services. She began her transportation career working in the private sector for an engineering-based consulting firm, later working for the San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District, Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority, and Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority.

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