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Amtrak names FRA’s Joseph Boardman President & CEO

(Amtrak issued the following on November 25.)

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The National Railroad Passenger Corporation Board of Directors announced today that it has chosen Joseph Boardman, a nationally recognized transportation industry professional, to become president and chief executive officer of the company, effective November 26.

Boardman offers nearly 34 years of experience in the surface transportation industry at city, county, state, and federal government levels; most recently as the administrator at the Federal Railroad Administration.

“In an attempt to maintain the momentum at Amtrak, while finding a permanent CEO candidate, the board has appointed Mr. Boardman for one year, but will conduct a search in the coming months for a permanent CEO,” said Board Chairman Donna McLean. She added that “Amtrak is at a critical juncture and needs a vigorous management vision and ability to take advantage of this unique time. The board has unanimously chosen Mr. Boardman in this capacity because we have complete confidence that his depth of experience and leadership skills will allow Amtrak to maintain growth and implement the requirements of the recently enacted authorization legislation.”

“Joe Boardman knows the industry extremely well, but what makes him exceptionally qualified for the position is that he has the unique perspective of having known Amtrak as a customer and state partner, administrator, and has been involved with Amtrak, in one role or another, over the course of many years,” said board Vice Chair Hunter Biden. “Joe is the right person to help Amtrak during this important period,” he added.

Having served as administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration since April 2005, Boardman was the Department of Transportation designee on the Amtrak board of directors. Prior to his tenure at FRA, he served as commissioner of the New York State Department of Transportation beginning in July of 1997. There, Boardman led a transformation effort that better enabled the agency to respond to the challenges associated with an expanding global marketplace. In this capacity, Boardman was deeply involved in the operation of the large complement of Amtrak service in the state. In addition, he was chief operating officer of Progressive Transportation Service, Inc., a transportation management company. He was chairman of the Executive Committee of the Transportation Research Board in 2005 and chair of the American Association of the State Highway and Transportation Officials’ Standing Committee on Rail Transportation from 2000-2005.

“I am humbled that the board selected me to lead the company, on an interim basis, at this very exciting time. Over the past decade — in one capacity or another — I have been an active participant in the affairs of Amtrak. I have come to know the company, the culture, a number of employees, and I am keenly aware of the challenges facing us right now,” said Boardman. “In my view, a national intercity, interconnected passenger rail service is critically important for the mobility and energy independence of the United States.”

Joe Boardman fills the position following the departure of Alex Kummant earlier this month. Chief Operating Officer William Crosbie served as acting CEO in the interim. “The board is grateful to Bill Crosbie for his dedication to Amtrak and for managing the company during the transition,” McLean added.

Boardman is a lifelong resident of New York, and is the second of eight children born and raised on a dairy farm in Oneida County, which two of his siblings currently operate. In 1966, he volunteered for service in the United States Air Force, serving in Vietnam from 1968 to 1969. Upon receiving an honorable discharge from the Air Force, he earned a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture Economics from Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., and a Master of Science in Management Science from the State University of New York at Binghamton. He presently resides with his wife Joanne in Washington, D.C., and has three grown children.

About Amtrak

Amtrak has posted six consecutive years of growth in ridership and revenue, carrying more than 28.7 million passengers in the last fiscal year. Amtrak provides intercity passenger rail service to more than 500 destinations in 46 states on a 21,000-mile route system. For schedules, fares and information, passengers may call 800-USA-RAIL or visit Amtrak.com.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008
bentley@ble-t.org

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