Jaunt names new transit leadership

Dec. 28, 2021
Ted Rieck has been named CEO and Karen Davis has been promoted to deputy CEO.

Jaunt, Inc., has new leadership that was installed in December 2021 with Ted Rieck taking the role of CEO as of Dec. 6 and Karen Davis becoming deputy CEO as of Dec. 15.

Jaunt offers Link demand response, circulator services, paratransit and four fixed routes within the counties of Amherst, Nelson, Buckingham, Fluvanna, Louisa and Albermarle, which includes Charlottesville, W.V.

Rieck comes to Jaunt from the Metropolitan Tulsa Transit Authority where he also served as CEO. He carries more than 30 years of transit leadership experience. In Tulsa, Rieck was responsible for more than 250 direct and indirect employees and oversaw a $23-million annual budget on a system that serves five communities and reported to a seven-member board. Jaunt notes Rieck has demonstrated talent in business development, collaborating and consensus building with diverse stakeholder groups, transportation planning and strategic financial management.

“I am very excited to be a part of this successful regional transit enterprise,” said Rieck. “With 45 years of growth and service evolution, Jaunt brings tremendous resources and experience to Central Virginia. I’m looking forward to working with all of Jaunt’s stakeholders to continue to address the tremendous need for affordable, accessible transportation in central Virginia.”

Rieck takes over from Interim CEO Karen Davis, who had been serving as chief operating officer since 2015 before stepping into the interim CEO position in December 2020. Davis now becomes deputy CEO.

“The board is pleased to welcome Ted Rieck to Jaunt. He is a highly experienced transit leader with the right blend of operations, planning, finance, and program development skills,” said Jaunt Board of Directors President Randy Parker. “Is it with immeasurable gratitude that we thank Karen Davis for her leadership over the [p]ast year. Under her direction, Jaunt has continued to provide exemplary service to this community, fulfilling the organization’s mission and vision. We are excited about what Ted and Karen will do together.”

Davis has more than 30 years of executive leadership, the past 10 being with Jaunt. Jaunt credits Davis with being instrumental in the development and management of Jaunt’s annual budget, along with organizational policies and procedures.

Davis is called “a change-agent within the organization” promoting and implementing the use of technology to realize efficiencies and operational improvements, as well as overseeing massive projects such as the renovation of Jaunt headquarters, the launch of the CONNECT commuter service and the transition of Green County Transit operations to Jaunt.

“I am delighted to have this opportunity to continue to serve Jaunt and the community in this capacity,” said Davis. “I am committed to Jaunt’s staff and our customers and I look forward to advancing our mission and vision in lockstep with Ted.”

Rieck echoed the sentiment saying he too was excited about what the duo can accomplish together for Jaunt.

“Her passion for Jaunt and public transportation as a critical community service, and for contributing to the betterment of the communities we serve will ensure that our mission remains at the forefront of all our organizational decisions,” said Rieck.

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