Metro Magazine

SEP-OCT 2014

Magazine serving the bus and rail transit & motorcoach operations since 1904

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Page 45 of 143

42 < m ETRO m AGAZINE SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2014 "Te path to infuence is the ability to balance both strength and warmth to gain the respect and trust of others." This quote from a recent Fast Company article is a succinct way of describing what makes people infuential. Te public trans- portation industry is loaded with infuential people — they have to be to get things done in such a challenging arena. In 2014, METRO Magazine is celebrating its 110th an- niversary. To commemorate that milestone, we wanted to highlight some of the influential people from the public side of the transportation industry from the past decade (2004 – 2014). We'd like to thank those who submitted nominations for this article. While we were unable to include everyone that was nominated, this brief list gives you an idea of the talent- ed, bold people who have made a lasting impact on public transportation and been an inspiration to others. BARACK OBAMA President Not since Dwight D. Eisenhower has an American President put such a focus on transportation issues. Immediately upon taking office, President Barack Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2008 (ARRA), which provided $48.1 billion for transportation initia- tives, including $8 billion for intercity passen- ger rail projects and rail congestion grants, with priority for high-speed rail; $6.9 billion for new equipment for public transportation projects; $1.5 billion for national surface transportation discretionary grants; and $1.3 billion for Amtrak. ARRA also created the TIGER grant program, which fund- ed approximately $3.1 billion in national surface transporta- tion projects between 2009 to 2012, and most recently awarded $600 million to 72 transportation projects in 46 states and the District of Columbia. In 2011, Obama became the frst U.S. President to mention public transportation during his State of the Union address, in- cluding the federal High Speed Intercity Passenger Rail Pro- gram. "Within 25 years, our goal is to give 80 percent of Amer- icans access to high-speed rail, which could allow you [to] go places in half the time it takes to travel by car," he said. "For some trips, it will be faster than flying — without the pat-down." In July 2012, President Obama signed the 27-month surface transportation bill, dubbed MAP-21. The bill funded public transportation at current levels for the fnal three months of Fis- cal Year (FY) 2012, $10.578 billion in FY 2013 and $10.695 bil- lion in FY 2014. Funding authorized from the Mass Transit Ac- count of the Highway Trust Fund amounted to $8.478 billion in FY 2013 and $8.595 billion in FY 2014, with $2.1 billion autho- rized from the General Fund in each fscal year. As MAP-21 approaches expiration, the Administration un- veiled the $302 billion "Grow America Act" in February, which refects Obama's vision for a four-year surface transportation bill that would create millions of jobs and lay the foundation for long-term competitiveness, rebuilding crumbling roads and bridges while providing much-needed certainty for local and state governments and addressing the country's future needs. MICHAEL MELANIPHY President/CEO American Public Transportation Association (APTA) Melaniphy began his 26-year public transportation career at In- diana University where he worked as a bus driver for the uni- versity basketball team coached by the legendary Bobby Knight. Now, Melaniphy holds perhaps the most high- level position in the industry as president/CEO of APTA. Remaining extremely active in the industry, Melaniphy proudly serves on the Executive Com- mittee of the Transportation Research Board (TRB), as well as on the boards of both RailVolution and the Transportation Learning Resource Center. In addition to his post at APTA, he is a commissioner on the Alliance to Save Ener- gy's Commission on National Energy Efciency Policy. He also serves on the boards of the Mineta Transportation Institute at San Jose State University and the National Center for Transit Research at CUTR - University South Florida. Melaniphy has testifed on Capitol Hill regarding several pub- lic transportation issues and met the president and First Lady af- ter only months on the job. "Just knowing that we have reached the table to such a point that, within months of being on the job, I was invited to the METRO's Whether it's providing billions for transportation initiatives to shaping legislation, or launching an innovative bus rapid transit project, the "Infuential" leaders on this list have worked to make public transportation better. Most Infuential

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