2023 40 Under 40: Joseph Mirabile

Aug. 22, 2023
Joseph Mirabile, President and CEO, United Safety

One word to describe yourself: Driven

Alma Mater: University of Pennsylvania – BA Philosophy /political science / economics Temple University – JD/MBA / LLM

Fast fact about yourself: At an early age, I was exposed to cars and motorcycles, which sparked a lifelong passion. I used to love helping my dad fix cars. It’s an absolute passion for me. In addition to cars and motorcycles, I am a huge fan of all Philadelphia sports. I do not like the Cowboys or any New York teams!

What’s your best experience on transit and what made it memorable?: Taking SEPTA’s subway to and from the world series games when the Phillies won back in 2008. Every once in a while, life offers us extraordinary experiences that becomes a cherished memory. One moment for me was taking the subway to the World Series in 2008 when the Phillies won! The subway stations were filled with fans supporting the Phillies and living in the moment. The camaraderie among everyone was incredible.

Taking the line to the World Series was more than just a means of transportation; it was an experience that embodied the essence of being a sports fan. The shared excitement, the sense of belonging and the connections formed along the way made the journey as memorable as the event itself.

Joseph Mirabile joined United Safety in 2011 and from the very beginning had a passion for seeking out solutions to problems faced by the transit industry. His impact on the company and its customer base was felt so strongly he was appointed president and CEO of the organization in 2016.

Under Mirabile's leadership, United Safety has grown to over 250 employees and has worked with almost every transit agency across North America. Early in his career at United Safety, he sought to bring the most effective and safe fire suppression system to the industry. He is responsible for growing the Fogmaker Fire Suppression business, which is now a multi-million dollar establishment and provides the most reliable water-based fire safety system to the market.

Mirabile has been responsible for many acquisitions during his time as president and CEO that continue to grow the United Safety portfolio of safety products . During COVID-19, Mirabile made a commitment to helping bring passengers back to public transit. He successfully led the creation of an active air purification unit specifically for rolling stock application that is now being used in public transit systems across North America.

Mirabile has made a career out of solving transit problems as they come. During the pandemic, he made advances to leverage United Safety’s resources to help print 3D face shields for first responders and bus operators across North America to help keep them safe during the pandemic. Recently, Mirabile has been on a mission to revolutionize the bus seating market both for operators, as well as passengers. In the operator space, he saw transit agencies were battling to keep bus operators on the road and that a lifetime of driving a bus could cause physical injury, workers compensation claims or even early retirement. To help protect the driver’s health, Mirabile has led the United Safety team to push for a way to create a safer and more comfortable ride for bus operators.

As an outcome to his efforts, the Infinity Rise Semi-Active Seat Suspension project launched in 2023 and is currently being piloted across the United States at major transit agencies, including Cap Metro, Oahu and Broward County. Mirabile has also committed to improving customer experience on transit buses by enhancing the seating of public transportation.

In 2023, he led the team to launch the Infinity Wave Passenger Seat. With an understanding of the benefits of the recent trend the transit industry has taken with electric buses, Mirabile sees Infinity Wave as a means to help buses drive further by creating additional weight savings. With a sleek modular design more suited to the way the general public uses mass transportation nowadays, Wave will utilize less material, therefore having less negative impact on the environment while also allowing electric vehicles to go further on a charge or diesel vehicles to go further on a tank of gas. Mirabile remains committed to enabling growth through innovation and technology within the transit sector. He is excited to see how United Safety can answer the problems that mass transit faces and will continue to look for and develop the best solutions for an industry that is paramount to the infrastructure of our country.

Is there a specific experience that led you to where you are today? 

I volunteered to teach an mba class while studying for the bar exam. After teaching the class, my friend and mentor, Christian Hammarskjold, the founder of the business, took me aside and invited me to come work for him. I started as a consultant and fell in love with the mission and vision of the organization. That teaching assignment and meeting changed the trajectory of my entire career.

What do you enjoy most about your job? 

Every day when I wake up, I am filled with excitement and motivation to work with my team. The people at United Safety are special. Each employee brings their own unique stories and perspectives. Learning everyday with our team is incredibly fulfilling.

What’s the most challenging part of your job? 

I think like most people, I find balancing the demands of work with personal life and well-being can be quite a challenge. Maintaining a healthy work-life balance ensures I can continue to provide support while also taking care of myself. It's an ongoing challenge but one that I strive to manage effectively to maintain a fulfilling and sustainable work-life balance. 

About the Author

Eman Abu-Khaled | Associate Editor

Eman Abu-Khaled is a recent graduate of Kent State University with a bachelors in journalism. She works through Endeavor Business Media with Mass Transit as an associate editor. Abu-Khaled brings a fresh perspective to the visual side of journalism with an interest in video and photography work.