Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 25

BY LOLO ROBISON
Director of Marketing &
Customer Service
Capital Area Transportation
Authority
Lansing, MI

N

obody would ever describe
Brad Funkhouser as
obscure, but little did the
newly appointed CEO of the Capital Area Transportation Authority
(CATA) know that he was about to
CATA CEO Brad Funkhouser (seated) befriends Michigan
become a local household name.
State University Spartans Kate Prisby (seated), Casey
"I want to give customers and
Halas (back row left) and Nolan Tollefson during a recent
the public opportunities to help
"Brad On The Bus" outreach event.
guide the future of public transit in
the greater Lansing region," Funkhouser said. "My goal, following a chalof a video (bit.ly/BradOnTheBus) that
lenging 2017, is to re-establish customer
honestly portrays Funkhouser as the guy
trust and raise our stock. We're a new
next door who regularly uses the serCATA. I'm listening. I want to hear from
vices he oversees.
our customers, who know better than
"He's genuinely humorous and
me, how we're doing and what more we
approachable," Siler said. "He makes
can do to improve our operations and
customers laugh and encourages them
service delivery."
to share the good, the bad and the ugly
Enter "Brad On The Bus"-an outabout their experiences with us."
reach campaign that has Funkhouser
According to Siler, the campaign was
regularly riding fixed-route and paraintentionally designed to take advantage
transit buses, listening to customers and
of Funkhouser's naturally fun-loving
sharing his vision to enhance customer
personality. His interactions with cusexperience, employee and customer
tomers make it clear that he is commitsafety, business proficiencies and comted to stewarding the funds entrusted
munity partnerships.
to CATA by the public, and raising
"We started with all the right ingrethe bar in terms of service quality and
dients for a successful outreach camtransparency.
paign," Funkhouser explained. "First, we
Iconic imagery, social and digital
consciously handed the conceptual and
media and coordinated popup events at
creative reins over to Frederick Siler, our
local coffee houses and diners help set
marketing specialist."
the stage. The rest is up to Funkhouser
Siler is a twenty-something Michigan
to do what he does best: making friends.
State University graduate student. He's
Together, the team monitors cusone of a handful of smart, up-and-comtomer comments and feedback, event
ing transit professionals entering CATA's
attendance, social media engagement
workforce. Tech-savvy and unobtrusively
and other performance measurements.
laid back, he championed "Brad On The
"We're currently trending between
Bus" by engaging co-workers in brain70 and 100 face-to-face customer interstorming sessions, before meeting with
actions per event. The buzz on social
his department director for feedback and
media is exploding, and the dialog is
guidance.
much more positive and collaborative,"
Siler orchestrated the production
Siler said.

Trolley Service Returns to Memphis

After an absence of almost four years, the Memphis (TN) Area Transit Authority (MATA) resumed
customer service April 30 on its Main Street Trolley Line. MATA Chief Executive Officer Gary
Rosenfeld said of the resumption of service, "Tens of thousands of pages of new rules, regulations,
engineering documents and standard operating procedures have been generated with one
thing in mind: to provide the public with a safe, reliable mode of transportation." The trolley
line connects the William Hudson Transit Center and the Butler Station, a distance of almost
two miles. The restored service, which operates with refurbished vintage cars, will operate at
first with two trolley cars Sunday through Thursday and three cars on Friday and Saturday; an
additional three cars will enter service after completing refurbishments and additional testing.

People On The Move
GRAND RAPIDS, MI-American
Seating announced
the appointment of
Anthony Tomasello as
its regional sales manager for the northeast
marketplace. He has
more than 10 years
of sales management
Tomasello
experience, including
five years in the transportation industry,
and previously worked for companies
including Chestnut Ridge Foam Inc. and
Pitney Bowes.
STEVENSVILLE, MD-Stertil-Koni
has named Radu Pop business development manager and Devin Leahey a warehouse associate.
Pop has a decade of industry experience, working with fleets including public transit, trucking and public works.
Leahey has related construction industry
experience as a carpenter and an insulation installer.

Pop

Leahey

PHILADELPHIA-Jeffrey D.
Knueppel, general
manager of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation
Authority, received
the Roosevelt Leadership Award at the
25th Annual March of
Knueppel
Dimes Transportation,
Building and Construction Awards Luncheon in Philadelphia.
The award, named for March of
Dimes founder President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, is given to an individual
who exemplifies commitment to the
community through volunteer service
and excellence in his or her field.
Knueppel has worked on the fundraising luncheon event for more than
a decade, serving as a board member,
chairman and honorary chair. He is
wearing a second necktie, in Eagles
green, in honor of the team's victory in
the Super Bowl.

BOSTON-STV has promoted Paul J.
Tyrell, chief civil engineer in the company's
Boston office for the
past two years, to
vice president. He has
more than 30 years of
experience and will
now serve as deputy
Tyrell
project manager for
the $1 billion Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority's Green Line light
rail extension.
SAVANNAH, GA-Chatham Area
Transit announced the hiring of Patricia
Harris-Morehead as chief strategy officer.
She has 14 years of public transit experience, serving most recently as communications and marketing director for
the Nashville (TN) Metropolitan Transit

Authority/Regional Transportation
Authority, and earlier worked in Tennessee state government and in television
news and public relations.

SAN BERNARDINO, CA-Omnitrans announced
the appointment of
Connie Raya as director
of maintenance. She
worked at the Orange
County Transportation Authority since
1993, rising to the
Raya
post of maintenance
resource manager and more recently
taking on special assignments.

Photos by Wendi Bates, courtesy of the Alaska Railroad

'Brad On The Bus' Outreach
Engages Customers, Public

ANCHORAGE, ALASKA-Alaska
Railroad is honoring two employees,
each of whom is celebrating his 50th
year with the system in 2018: Charles
R. Dillard Jr., a carman writer/inspector,
and Harry Ross, a conductor/brakeman.
Dillard joined the railroad in 1965 as
an apprentice carman and, after taking
a break in 1967-69, returned as a freight
car carman in 1970.
He chose a mechanical
career, maintaining
railcars. Soon he was
promoted to car
inspector, followed by
promotions to carman
leader in 1990 and carDillard
man writer/inspector
in 2007. Dillard is a second-generation
railroader whose father was an Illinois
Central Railroad conductor for 39 years.
The railroad hired Ross as a student
brakeman in 1968. He
became a full-fledged
brakeman in 1970 and
added conductor to
his skills the following
year. From 1979-84,
he oversaw train operations in the AnchorRoss
age Yard, first as a
yardmaster trainee and later as a yardmaster. In 1985, he resumed conductor/
brakeman duties and has remained in
this job ever since.
SEATTLE-Vix Technology has
named Gary Googins
its general manager
for the Americas.
Before joining the
company, Googins
was a public transit
technology consultant whose activities
Googins
included steering the
program delivery of the Connect Transit
Card, connecting nine transit agencies
in the Sacramento, CA, market. He also
worked for the Regional Transportation
District in Denver as an ITS program
manager and led the implementation of
an electronic fare system.

DES PLAINES, IL-Ethan Sprengeler
has joined Motor
Coach Industries as
regional sales vice
president. He joins the
firm after serving as a
sales account executive for another bus
sales firm.
Sprengeler

May 7, 2018 | 25


http://www.bit.ly/BradOnTheBus

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9

Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 1
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 2
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 3
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 4
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 5
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 6
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 7
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 8
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 9
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 10
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 11
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 12
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 13
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 14
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 15
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 16
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 17
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 18
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 19
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 20
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 21
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 22
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 23
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 24
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 25
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 26
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 27
Passenger Transport May 2018 Vol 76 No 9 - 28
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