TCAT’S 2010 Board Reorganization

Tompkins County Legislator Frank Proto took over as chairman of the TCAT Board of Directors at the board’s 2010 reorganizational meeting Jan. 28.Proto replaces 2009 Chairman Dan Cogan, member of Ithaca Common Council. “We are very thankful to Dan Cogan for his hard work, talent and ingenuity at the helm of TCAT’s board in 2009,” said TCAT General Manager Joe Turcotte. “It was a busy year in whichTCAT opened its new Green Street Station, part of TCAT’s City Center Project of which Dan was very instrumental from day one. Dan and the board also guided TCAT in 2009 as staff prepared to launch our new route system and state-of-the-art fare collection system that went into effect Jan. 17.” Cogan will continue on the board, serving on both its budget and planning committees. Turcotte said TCAT staff now looks forward to working under the board leadership of Proto, who has served on the Tompkins County Legislature since 1985 and has served on numerouscommunity organizations and TCAT’s board (pre- and post- incorporation) for 15 years. Proto’s first order of business on Jan. 28 was to establish a board Planning Committee, made up of three board members. The board’s additional committees are: Audit; Human Resources; Budget; and Transit Services. Proto said the Planning Committee will work closely with TCAT’s Citizen Advisory Committee, a diverse panel of riders and local residents established three years ago to advise TCAT management and staff. In addition, Proto said he also wants the new Planning Committee towork with the Ithaca-Tompkins County Transportation Council, the county’s MetropolitanPlanning Organization, whose aim is to facilitate county-wide transportation planning. Tompkins Consolidated Area Transit, Inc. 737 Willow AveIthaca NY 14850. Tel: (607) 277-7433Fax: (607) 277-9551. Proto said that the new Planning Committee will be tasked with looking toward the public transit implications of such issues as future regionalization, economic development and projects that could result from the county’s Route 96 Corridor Study. “There are so many issues we have been dealing with that require a long-range look,” Proto said. “I want to have a team assembled so that if we have to tackle another project – such as the CityCenter Project – we can sit back and do forecasting. I have been on the board long enough to know that we can get wrapped up with the day-to-day issues and we need more time to think ahead. This is what I am hoping for with this new committee.” In addition, TCAT on Jan. 28 welcomed new board member Kyu-Jung Whang, Cornell University’s vice president of facilities. Among his myriad duties, Whang oversees Cornell’scommuter, fleet and parking services as well as campus mail services, and he is a senior memberof the staff for Cornell’s Vice President for Finance and Administration. Whang replaces longtime board member Rich McDaniel, who retired in December from Cornell University in his capacity as Vice President for Risk Management and Public Safety. Turcotte thanked McDaniel for his service to TCAT and for shepherding the Center City Project, which also included the construction of the Seneca Street shelter. Turcotte said he the TCAT staff look forward to working with Whang. “He will bring many gifts to the table in our mission to continuously improve service,” Turcottesaid. Bill Wendt, another longtime TCAT board member, announced Jan. 28 he will be retiring fromthe board effective February 2010. Wendt, announced he is retiring from Cornell University, where he serves as Director of Transportation and Mail Services. Wendt’s service to TCAT and its predecessors spans more than three decades. Said Turcotte: “We are extremely grateful for Bill’s dedication, his get-it-done attitude, and his hard work in helping TCAT reach record ridership and to continuously improve our service.” Cornell University is expected to name a replacement for Wendt. TCAT was officially established in 1998 and reorganized as a not-for-profit corporation in 2005. TCAT’s history stretches back nearly half a century, originating from three transit systems:Ithaca Transit, City of Ithaca; CU Transit, Cornell University; and TOMTRAN, TompkinsCounty. TCAT’s other board members include: Kathy Luz Herrera, Tompkins County Legislature; Pam Mackesey, Tompkins County Legislature; Dr. Henrik Dullea, Cornell University Vice President for University Relations Emeritus, Nancy Schuler, Ithaca City, (former Common Council member); and Jennifer Dotson, Ithaca City Common Council member.TCAT, Inc (Tompkins Consolidated Area Transit, Inc.) is a not-for-profit corporation that provides public transportation for Tompkins County and portions of Tioga and Schuyler counties. TCAT transports more than 3.35 million passengers every year covering a distance of more than 1.6 million miles. The fleet of approximately 50 buses currently includes 6 hybrid electric-diesel buses. TCAT also offers complementary ADA Paratransit services called Gadabout. For more information about TCAT, please visit www.tcatbus.com or call (607) 277-RIDE.

Also on FingerLakes1.com