People in the News

Clifford Eby, former acting administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration, has been named a senior vice president in the Washington, D.C., office of Parsons Brinckerhoff (PB). In his new position, Eby will be responsible for strategic efforts in rail and infrastructure markets, particularly high-speed rail. Eby has more than 36 years of executive and engineering experience within the railroad industry. His areas of expertise include rail safety, finance and economic regulatory practices, transportation policy and rail infrastructure program design. 

Gary Thomas, president/executive director for Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART), has received the Conference of Minority Transportation Officials (COMTO) 2009 Executive of the Year Award. COMTO officials cited his leadership in the hiring and advancement of minorities, and the steady growth of DART contract opportunities for emerging and historically underutilized businesses. Thomas has been president/executive director of DART since August 2001.

Grote Industries announced the appointment of Dominic Grote as president and chief operating officer. Grote, who will have global responsibility for managing the company’s business, was named president of the family-owned, family-managed vehicle safety system manufacturer, following a move by Grote Industries’ past president, Eric Morris. Grote most recently served as the organization’s vice president of sales and marketing. Since starting his career with the firm in 1993, he has held various management positions.

The Indianapolis Public Transportation Corp. (IndyGo) recently announced the hire of Jenny Brown as manager of marketing and communications and the promotion of Mike Moles to director of maintenance. In her new role, Brown will guide IndyGo’s media relations and public outreach efforts. She will also oversee IndyGo’s marketing campaigns, internal communications and Web site management in order to enhance awareness and use of public transit services in Indianapolis. Moles was promoted to this position at IndyGo from director of procurement and will apply his 25 years of experience in maintenance to ensure the fleet is well-serviced and operates with maximum efficiency. His background includes management of planning, delivery and organization of services for both public and private transportation fields.

TranSystems Corp. announced that John Nussrallah has joined the company as vice president for its Ft. Worth office and in support of the firm’s passenger rail and transit, freight railroads and manufacturers/distributors groups. Prior to TranSystems, he spent several years at the Thomas Group, Inc. in Dallas, as both senior vice president and practice leader for the transportation and logistics sector. He served as president of Greenbrier Europe in Swidnica, Poland for two years, with sales offices in the UK and Germany.

Nussrallah also had lengthy tenures with both Trinity Industries in Dallas and Consolidated Rail Corporation (CONRAIL) in Philadelphia, where he was a corporate officer with 27 years in the operating department.

Veolia Transportation announced that Donald Saunders has been named chief operating officer of the company’s rail division. Saunders, who joins Veolia Transportation from Amtrak, will report to executive vice president – rail Ron Hartman and work with the rail management team to advance Veolia Transportation as the largest provider of contracted rail services in the United States. Ralph Power was named the new general manager for the contract that Veolia Transportation operates for Butte Regional Transit in Chico, Calif.

The announcement was made by Regional Vice President for Northern California Ron Bushman. The contract, which Veolia Transportation has operated for the last 18 years, is administered by the Butte County Association of Governments (BCAG) and provides both fixed route and paratransit services. Before moving to the Chico location, Power was Assistant General Manager for Veolia Transportation, managing transit operations in Tucson, Arizona for the company’s Professional Transit Management (PTM) division.   

EAO Switch Corp. announced the promotion of John J. Pannone to vice president sales, HMI Systems. In his new role, Pannone will be responsible for the growth of HMI System business in North America, while maintaining his current responsibilities as key accounts manager. He will expand the company’s extensive partner network for HMI Systems.

MTA Metro-North President Howard Permut has announced the appointment of Raymond Burney as senior vice president of administration, Robert C. MacLagger as vice president of planning and Seth J. Cummins as vice president, general counsel. These additions to the railroad’s management team come at pivotal time as the railroad embarks on a five-year strategic business plan. Burney, who has been Metro-North’s senior director for labor relations, was chosen to head the new administration division, which will include labor relations, human resources, procurement and material management and employee relations and diversity. Burney joined Metro-North in 1985 and has directed the railroad’s labor relations efforts for two decades. MacLagger has had many accomplishments during his 26-year career at this railroad, and most recently during his eight months as acting vice president. Cummins has more than 30 years of experience in the practice of law, much of which was in service to the public. For 15 years Cummins served in New York City’s Department of Transportation, ultimately becoming that agency’s general counsel and from 2002 to 2004, he also served as counsel to the Brooklyn Borough president.

Dewberry announced George Jacobs’ election as president of the Connecticut chapter of the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC/CT) beginning July 1, 2009. Dewberry also has announced that Andy Ko, PhD, PE, has been selected to serve on the American Railway Engineering and Maintenance-of-Way Association’s (AREMA) Technical Committee 8, Concrete Structures and Foundations.

The Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) has honored Alejandro Angel of Psomas with its ITE Western District Young Professional Achievement Award for members under 35 years old. According to ITE, Angel was selected for the award because of his “exceptional dedication to the transportation profession” through his contributions and service.

Angel is the leader of Psomas’ traffic engineering team in Arizona and is a registered professional engineer in Arizona and California, as well as a registered professional traffic operations engineer. Angel has a Master’s of Science degree and a PhD in civil engineering from the University of Arizona.

Cardno TBE is pleased to announce the appointment of Scott Stockburger, PE, as manager of engineering operations, to the Garland, Texas, office. He will be responsible for providing technical expertise and management of civil and subsurface utility engineering projects throughout Texas and in other states as needed. Most recently, Stockburger served as regional utility coordination manager for a Texas-based engineering and land survey firm. He is a registered professional engineer in the state of Texas and holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Texas A&M University. Stockburger spent 18 years with the Texas Department of Transportation before joining the consultant community.

Reconnecting America President and CEO Shelley Poticha has been appointed senior advisor for Sustainable Housing and Communities at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Poticha has been president and CEO of the national nonprofit Reconnecting America since 2004, where she has become a national leader for the reform of land use and transportation planning and policy. Poticha also co-chairs the Transportation for America campaign.

Goodall Mfg. has appointed Greg Kvidera as its new president. Kvidera, who first joined the company in May 2008 as general manager, has more than 20 years of experience in business development and strategic planning. He is a talented and forward-thinking executive with extensive technical and administrative experience.

At the monthly board of trustees meeting for the Utah Transit Authority, Meghan Holbrook was sworn into service as a new board member. Holbrook was appointed by the Utah Transportation Commission and is employed by Zions Bank, Office of the President, in government relations. She was appointed to the Utah State Board of Regents in 2004, where she chairs the Strategic Planning Committee and is a member of the executive committee. As a representative of the board of regents, she also sits on the Utah State Board of Education. Holbrook was appointed to the Transportation Commission in 2007, where she represents Salt Lake and Tooele Counties. She is married to attorney Jim Holbrook.

MV Transportation Inc. is pleased to announce Gary Willms has been named president of MV Sales and Leasing Inc. He joins MVSL from ISE Corp., where he served as vice president of business development. He previously was Neoplan USA’s vice president of sales and marketing, and in January 2005 took over the responsibilities as vice president of program management. He has been a purchasing director for the Gillig Corp., as well as the company’s manager of transportation marketing until joining Neoplan in September 2004. Willms is an active member of APTA and has served on several of the organizations committees, including the Standard Bus Guideline Committee during its development.

ABC Companies is pleased to announce that Ryhan Cornell has joined the family business. As with the other Cornell family members, Cornell grew up around buses and has been working on and off in the family business since she was old enough to push a broom.