Capital Metro’s board of directors named four finalists in the agency’s search to replace the retiring Linda Watson as president/CEO. The candidates are:
Randy Clarke — Vice President, Operations and Member Services, American Public Transportation Association (APTA). Clarke has worked for the trade association APTA since April 2016 and spent seven years in various positions with the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority in Boston, including as deputy chief operating officer and assistant general manager of Engineering, Maintenance and Preparedness and senior director of security.
Erika Mazza — Deputy General Manager, Northern Arizona Intergovernmental Public Transportation Authority. She has spent the past five years with the Northern Arizona Intergovernmental Public Transportation Authority in Flagstaff and has been its deputy general manager since 2016. Mazza is responsible for the Planning, Capital, Facilities, Public Affairs and Mobility divisions. She also served the cities of Flagstaff and Boulder, Colo., with responsibility for overseeing Human Services and Housing.
Darrell Mobley — Director, Department of Public Works & Transportation, Prince George’s County. This role gives Mobley responsibility for the county’s portion of the Maryland Transit Administration’s Purple Line construction project and bus, paratransit and roadway operations. He’s been in that position since 2013. His previous service included time as deputy transportation secretary and acting transportation secretary for the state of Maryland.
Raymond Suarez — Chief Operating Officer, Denton County Transportation Authority (DCTA). Suarez became COO of the DCTA in 2014. Prior to that, he was the chief administrative officer of the Trinity Railway Express, a commuter rail service operated as a joint venture of Dallas Area Rapid Transit and the Fort Worth Transportation Authority. He also has held executive positions with technology firms in Silicon Valley and in Michigan.
Executive search firm Krauthamer & Associates has aided Capital Metro during the process, which began at the end of July after Watson announced her pending retirement following more than seven years in the position. The transit agency has taken public feedback regarding the search at multiple board meetings since the announcement, including at a special meeting called explicitly for the purpose on Sept. 14. In addition, the search firm and Capital Metro posted a survey online and solicited feedback from agency staff.
Board members met with a small number of candidates earlier this month and discussed the finalists at today’s board meeting.
The Central Texas community will have an opportunity to hear directly from the finalists at a public meeting scheduled for Jan. 8, 2018 at the Austin Independent School District’s Performing Arts Center. The facility is located at 1500 Barbara Jordan Blvd. in the Mueller neighborhood and is accessible by Routes 37 and 320, as well as by MetroRail via the Pickup pilot service. Members of the board will deliberate on their decision at a special meeting scheduled for Jan. 9 and are expected to make a decision at that time. The regularly scheduled January board meeting is set for Jan. 29, and members plan to vote on approval of a contract with the new CEO at that time.
The board also approved the appointment of Elaine Timbes as interim president/CEO, effective Dec. 31. Timbes is currently deputy CEO and chief operating officer and has been with Capital Metro for 31 years. She will serve in that role until Watson’s replacement comes on board.