John Andoh named administrator of Hele-On

Jan. 4, 2022
Andoh will lead day-to-day operations and be tasked with implementing the county’s Transit and Multimodal Transportation Master Plan

County of Hawai’i Mayor Mitch Roth has named John Andoh to be the mass transit administrator of the county’s agency, Hele-On. Andoh’s appointment is effective Jan. 3 and follows his stint in the role as a temporary assignment.

Andoh will be responsible for leading the day-to-day operations of the agency and be the chief administrative officer, implementing elements of the Master Plan, supporting the Transportation Commission, pursing grant funds, transforming the fleet to zero emissions and purchasing a brand-new bus fleet. Additionally, he will lead policy development for the agency and plan for a balanced, safe and efficient transportation system.

Additional responsibilities include promoting increased use of sustainable forms of transportation, including walking, biking and transit use island-wide, and working to improve equity in transportation policies, programs and services.

“John brings a wealth of transportation experience from a variety of communities,” said Managing Director Lee Lord. “I am confident that he can bring new innovations to the Mass Transit Agency and rejuvenate our public transit system that has been faced with challenges.”

Mayor Roth praised Andoh’s efforts developing the county’s Transit and Multimodal Transportation Master Plan during the past six months.

“We know that he will bring that same passion, expertise and vigor to our island, as we all work to make Hawai’i Island sustainable for generations to come,” said Mayor Roth.

Andoh brings 22 years of experience to Hele-On with past positions with Capital Metropolitan Transportation Authority in Austin, Texas, Yuma County Intergovernmental Public Transportation Authority in Yuma, Ariz., Tahoe Regional Planning Agency in Stateline, Nev., and the city of Elk Grove in Elk Grove, Calif.

Most recently, Andoh was executive directory and CEO of the Central Midlands Regional Transit Authority (The COMET) in Columbia, S.C., where he directed all aspects of a multi-county public transit system’s operations. During his tenure with The COMET, Andoh implemented partnerships for bike sharing, transportation network companies, mobility management and vanpooling. He also established transportation programs to address food deserts, nighttime needs and connected people to vaccination sites, as well as providing fresh produce at a downtown transit center.

Andoh has also performed part-time work with the city of Escalon, Calif., since 2000, city of Burlington, N.C., since 2021 and with the town of Quartzsite, Ariz., since 2013, improving and expanding transit systems.

“I am very grateful for this opportunity to return to Hawai’i County to make Hele-On the best that it can be. Since originally coming to this island in 2014 and falling in love with the people and the environment and the island as a whole, I am looking toward building Hele-On to be economic driver for the island and achieve the goals of Mayor Roth’s administration towards a better sustainable quality of life for island residents,” said Andoh.

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Michael Dantzler/The COMET
COMET bus riders receive free 45-minute passes for Blue Bike.