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December 4, 2018

Talking Transit: Exploring the Economic Backbone Of Our Region – Moderated by Leanne Redden – Dorval Carter, Jim Derwinski, and Rocky Donahue

Leanne Redden

Leanne Redden is Executive Director of the Regional Transportation Authority (RTA). The RTA is the unit of local government charged with regional financial oversight,funding, and transit planning for the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), Metra and Pace Bus and ADA Paratransit. The agency manages an annual regional transit operating budget of nearly $3 billion with assets of approximately $160 billionand a more than $4 billion five-year capital program. Under Redden’s leadership, the RTA created the most recent 5-year regional transit strategic plan, Invest in Transit.

Dorval Carter

Dorval R. Carter, Jr. is President of the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), the nation’s second-largest transit agency, providing approximately 1.5 million rides on an average weekday and serving the City of Chicago and 35 surrounding suburbs. Overseeing more than 10,000 employees, President Carter carries out CTA’s mission of delivering quality, affordable transit services that link people, jobs and communities. Appointed as CTA President in 2015, Mr. Carter has overseen unprecedented investment in CTA.

Under Mayor Emanuel, more than $8 billion of projects have been completed, begun or announced—including the largest construction project in CTA history (the Red and Purple Modernization), the largest railcar order in the agency’s history, and the reconstruction/rehabilitation of more than 40 rail stations.

James M. Derwinski

Jim Derwinski was appointed CEO/Executive Director by the Metra Board of Directors in 2017. He began his railroad career as a locomotive electrician with Chicago & North Western Railway, which later became part of Union Pacific Railroad. He joined Metra as an electrician in 1997 and rose through the ranks in the Mechanical Department, serving in progressively responsible senior leadership positions, including Chief Mechanical Officer. In that role, he oversaw 650 employees responsible for the repair, inspection, cleaning and maintenance of the railroad’s 1,164 pieces of rolling stock used in commuter service.

Rocky Donahue

Rocky Donahue has been named interim Executive Director of Pace, Northeastern Illinois’s suburban bus, regional ADA paratransit, and vanpool service provider, effective December 1, 2018.

In his 35-year career at Pace Rocky has served in many leadership roles, including Deputy Executive Director of External Relations, Deputy Executive Director of Internal Services, and Director of Government Affairs. He has overseen the functions of Community Relations, Customer Service, Government Affairs, Marketing, Media & Public Relations, Signs & Shelters, Finance, Budget, Grants, Capital Infrastructure, Procurement and Information Technology. As interim Executive Director, he will provide leadership and direction to all areas of Pace to ensure that the agency achieves its goals, which all serve to provide safe and reliable public transportation services to the residents of Northeastern Illinois while being good stewards of the environment and the taxpayer dollar. Rocky also serves as the Chairman of the Illinois State University Board of Trustees and is a member of the Illinois Public Transportation Association Board of Directors, Good Shepherd Board of Directors, APTA Legislative Committee, and the ARC of Illinois.