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Public Transit: On a Roll


CLEVELAND: Joseph A. Calabrese, CEO & general manager/secretary-treasurer of the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA), will speak on the many challenges facing the public transit industry during this climate of increased ridership at noon on Friday, August 29, 2008, at The City Club of Cleveland.


Calabrese has made many changes to RTA since his arrival in 2000. With a motto of “back to the basics,” he has led an aggressive bus replacement program, rail system renovation program, and increased emphasis on image, financial management and enhanced customer service.

The focus on customer service has resulted in a quarterly report card relating to RTA’s performance in key areas, a TEAM employee incentive program and an unconditional customer guarantee, Ride Happy or Ride Free. The result has been a turn-around of RTA’s ridership. For the first time since the 1970s, RTA has now experienced five consecutive years of ridership growth. In 2007, RTA was named the “Best Public Transit System” in North America.

Calabrese has nearly 30 years of experience in both the public and private transit sectors, and in an industry study, he was named as one of the most innovative and creative general managers in the nation.

Calabrese received his undergraduate degree from Syracuse University, his MBA from the University of Buffalo, and completed post-graduate fellowships at Northeastern, University of Chicago, and the Wharton School.

A past president of state transit associations in both New York and Ohio, Calabrese is active in the American Public Transportation Association and chairs a national task force on Bus Rapid Transit (BRT). He also plays a key role in a statewide task force looking at the future of transportation in Ohio.


Tickets are $18 for members and $30 for non-members. Lunch is included. They can be purchased by calling The City Club at 216.621.0082 or visiting the website at www.cityclub.org.






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