2020 40 Under 40: Matthew Dutkevicz

Aug. 18, 2020
Matthew Dutkevicz, Executive Director, Butler County Regional Transit Authority
  • One word to describe yourself: Determined
  • Alma Mater: University of Toledo, Miami University
  • Favorite hobby(s):  Camping, traveling, making music, dog dad
  • Fun fact about yourself:  I performed on stage at Carnegie Hall in 2013.  (I was part of a complement of accompanying musicians, but still …)

For Matthew Dutkevicz, a coach operator job at the University of Toledo during his undergrad career has turned into an 18-year journey that has left significant impacts on the landscape of Ohio transit.

Dutkevicz has been serving as executive director for Butler County Regional Transit Authority (BCRTA) since 2016. Under his leadership, BCRTA has evolved from on-demand service to incorporate county-wide service and lower fares. BCRTA has also replaced its aging fleet, negotiated a long-term operations contract with Miami University, implemented countywide curb-to-curb service, grown ridership in the county from 77,000 rides in 2012 to 621,000 in 2018 and grown employment at BCRTA from 22 to 100 people under Dutkevicz’s leadership.

Throughout his tenure, Dutkevicz has aimed to be creative, entrepreneurial and collaborative as exemplified through his work on a multimodal transportation facility in Oxford, Ohio, which will allow BCRTA to continue its operations with Miami University long-term, as well as bring together multiple providers into one transportation hub.

Another achievement Dutkevicz has been able to provide to citizens of Butler County is access to Southwest Ohio’s first mobility management program which helps to connect people to transportation options. Under his direction, the mobility manager has become certified as a travel trainer by Easter Seals and is assisting in leading the county to solve transportation bottlenecks to school, employment centers and medical appointments.

He has been instrumental in leading recent projects to drive the agency forward, including mobile app payment and scheduling for county-wide Dial-A-Ride service and the implementation of collaborative regional mobile ticketing with Cincinnati Metro and Transit Authority of Northern Kentucky.

Dutkevicz is also president of the Ohio Transit Risk Pool, member of NEORide Board of Directors, member of the Ohio-Kentucky-Indiana Regional Council of Governments Board of Directors and an alumnus of the West Chester Leadership 21 class.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

Working in public transit is an opportunity to do something different every day.  Especially when working at a small agency, there is an opportunity to be involved in many facets of the business.  I enjoy being able to “change lanes” and collaborate with colleagues on many different projects and parts of our organization and industry.  Work is never boring!

What’s the most challenging part of your job?

Anybody who works in public service understands why there are so many rules and regulations in place, but it doesn’t make them less frustrating.  It is often a challenge to navigate through rules and regulations for projects and processes my colleagues and I have never encountered.  We always find a way to succeed, but it does seem challenging and can really put a damper on your excitement and momentum to get something done.

Accomplishment you’re most proud of and why?

When I started at BCRTA in 2010, I was one of 26 employees.  Today, we employ over 100 people. Along that journey, we have added fixed-route service, ADA Paratransit, a university transit system, a general public demand/response service with mobile reservations and payment and significantly reduced public fares.  I am glad we have been able to expand these offerings, but I am especially proud that we have been able to build the team to make it all happen. Good transit doesn’t happen without great people.  I’m proud of our great people!

Best advice/tip/best practice to share from your area of expertise?

I’m going to recommend two pretty common-sense tips that I think are often forgotten:

1) Always demo/pilot your new technology solutions in your own environment if you can!  You can never learn everything from a proposal or slideshow and there are so many unknowns with new technology.  Sometimes it’s difficult, but we have learned so many frustration and time-saving lessons when this is done.

2) Great workplaces and organizations cannot exist without TRUST.  Trust is the first building block of success, productivity, and collaboration.  The best leaders and teams establish trust and nurture it in their organizations.

Why do you like being a part of the public transit industry?

Collaboration – It’s great to work in an industry where you have peers who are not your competition (usually!).  Transit systems and professionals are great at sharing resources and helping each other solve problems together.  It is wonderful to be able to pick up the phone or shoot off a message to a peer or friend, locally or across the state or country, to get advice and share experiences.  Transit is so collegial!  I am especially proud of the things we accomplish at the Ohio Transit Risk Pool, NEORide, the Ohio Public Transit Association and locally with the many transit agencies in our own metropolitan planning organization at OKI.