The RTA is finally ready to step on the gas, today voting unanimously to offer the position of CEO to Michael Ford.
Mr. Ford has 35 years of transit experience, starting back in college as a bus station janitor in Seattle. He has experience in public and private transit and directed bus and rail operations at TriMet in Portland. For the past five years he has been CEO of the Ann Arbor Area Transit Authority, leading it through a very successful community engagement, planning, and funding process, ultimately persuading 71% of voters to approve a tax hike to expand transit service by 44%! Now he just needs to do the same here, with 10 times the population and in half the time!
While he still needs to negotiate a contract and give 60 days notice to AAATA, this has real potential to be a turning point for the RTA and for transit in the region. He’s got great experience, understands the importance of substantive community engagement, and is driven to make a real difference.
We at TRU look forward to the opportunity to work closely with him to make a transformational change in Detroit area transit!