Transportation: RANDY CLARKE
GENERAL MANAGER AND CEO, WASHINGTON METROPOLITAN AREA TRANSIT AUTHORITY, WASHINGTON, D.C.
Clarke took over Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority in July, succeeding Paul. J. Wiedefeld, who retired in May amid news that 250 train operators had not been recertified as required.
Before leading WMATA, which manages Metrorail and Metrobus, Clarke was president and CEO of Austin, Texas’ Capital Metropolitan Transportation Authority, where he oversaw a multibillion-dollar transit expansion. A graduate of the University of Southern Maine and Acadia University, Clarke also held executive roles at the American Public Transportation Association and the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority.
Clarke joins WMATA during a challenging time. More than half of its rail cars were removed from service for several months following the discovery of a wheel defect, and ridership remains decreased following the pandemic. Also, Metro is expanding in Northern Virginia.
Clarke told The Washington Post he sees more opportunities to gain riders. With gas prices at record highs combined with the environmental impact of driving, people want to take Metro, but they also want assurance that it is “safe, reliable and frequent,” Clarke said.
“We’ve got to get people back on the transit system, because when the system’s performing well, the whole region’s performing well.”