January 12, 2018
» The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority seeks a chief executive officer. [More]
» The Maryland Transit Administration is looking for a director of transit operations and chief operations officer. [More]
» The Yuma County (AZ) Intergovernmental Public Transportation Authority requests proposals for operations and maintenance of fixed-route and demand-response service. [More]
View more Classified Ads »
TO PLACE AN AD: E-mail the requested date(s) of publication to: ptads@apta.com. Mailing address is: Passenger Transport, 1300 I Street NW, Suite 1200 East, Washington, DC 20005. Ad copy is not accepted by phone. DEADLINE: 3 p.m. EST, Friday, one week prior to publication date. INFORMATION: Phone (202) 496-4877.

Meet Polly Hanson!

Polly Hanson

Director-Security, Risk & Emergency Management
Member Services Department

What are your primary responsibilities at APTA?

My duties include addressing transit security, risk and emergency management issues. I enjoy a close working relationship with TSA and ensure that information from them is disseminated to APTA members. I also work with TSA and the Association of American Railroads (AAR) on intelligence, security and cyber concerns, and I facilitate calls with the TSA, FBI, AAR and international partners to discuss a range of issues, developments and solutions.

Another responsibility is advocating for transit security on Capitol Hill and working with congressional and legislative leaders on potential regulations that could affect public transportation security.

An example of the emergency management element of my job was during the recent hurricanes. APTA helped coordinate and educate both those helping with relief efforts and those who had been impacted, and worked with the federal government following requests for help from people who had been evacuated.

In addition, I regularly brief the media on transportation security issues.

What initiatives or programs have you worked on at APTA of which you are particularly proud?

Along with Brian Alberts, APTA’s director-safety, I am working to reenergize the Bus and Rail Safety & Security Excellence Awards program. We now have online nominations forms, making it much easier to submit for an award and, therefore, ultimately highlight and convey best practices that can be replicated across the industry.

I’m excited about the risk liability study we are getting ready to send out to members.

Not least, I’m proud to be able to advocate effectively on the Hill on behalf of APTA members.

To what extent do you have direct contact with APTA members?

I correspond with APTA members on a regular basis and will often connect them with other members to grow their peer-to-peer relationships and for advice and collaboration: who’s using body cameras, best practices for addressing assaults on bus operators, drug and alcohol testing, training for fare inspectors, etc.

I’m in contact with APTA committee chairs and members by serving as staff advisor to the APTA Committee on Public Safety, Security Affairs Steering Committee, Risk Management Committee and Security Standards Policy and Planning Committee.

I am also involved with a security roundtable where APTA, TSA, the FBI, police chiefs and security directors of APTA member organizations exchange information. We’ll analyze incidents and discuss where improvements can be made from a transportation standpoint. I hosted a webinar on autonomous vehicles in law enforcement and on a broadband network that will be available to states and to transit security networks, and I’ll be facilitating a webinar with TSA and FEMA on the next round of Transit Security Grants Program funding.

How did you come to be at APTA?

I’ve been at APTA since April 2017. I started my career way back as a communications technician with the United States Park Police. I have more than 30 years of transit security experience. I spent 27 years with the Washington ­Metropolitan Area Transit Authority and with Amtrak, and had the pleasure of being the chief of police at both Metro/WMATA and Amtrak. I was also with the Department of the Interior, providing oversight of Interior’s seven law enforcement programs, and I also served as a civilian assistant chief with the Metropolitan Police in the District of Columbia.

Do you have any professional affiliations?

I’m affiliated with three FBI programs: the National Academy Associates (a course for law enforcement managers), the National Executive Institute (a group of senior executives of major law enforcement organizations) and the Law Enforcement Executive Development Seminar. I’m also a member of the Police Executive Research Forum and the International Association of Chiefs of Police.

Could you tell us something about yourself that might surprise us?

I want to work in a flower shop. It’s something I do on my own and for friends, but someday I’ll go to school to formally learn how to be a flower designer. In the summertime, I make bouquets and bring them into my office.
« Previous Article
Return to Top
Next Article »

© Copyright American Public Transportation Association
1300 I Street NW, Suite 1200 East, Washington, DC 20005
Telephone (202) 496-4882 • Fax (202) 496-4321
Print Version | Search Back Issues | Contact Us | Unsubscribe
Twitter Flickr Blog YouTube Facebook