We are pleased to introduce the Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority’s newest team member, Rob Padgette. Coming to us from Silver Spring, MD, Rob is the Capitol Corridor’s Deputy Managing Director, a role that will support the work of our Managing Director, David Kutrosky. Rob was previously the Deputy Executive Director of the Northeast Corridor Commission in Washington, DC, where he managed all administrative aspects of the organization and supported the execution of the commission’s work plan, including cost allocation for passenger rail in the Northeast Corridor, the development of a five-year capital program, and performance reporting.
Along with his wife and two sons, Rob made the jump from East Coast to West Coast at the start of the year and has already made himself at home here at the Capitol Corridor and in Northern California. We’re excited to have Rob on board (pun intended!) and invite you to learn a little more about him through this brief interview with the Capitol Corridor’s Karen Bakar.
KB: Where did you grow up?
RP: I grew up in Raleigh, North Carolina, but have also spent time in Chicago, and for the past 16 years lived in the Washington, D.C. Metro area.
KB: What about this job inspired you to move across the country?
RP: Right now California is leading the country in its commitment to transit and passenger rail. The state recognizes the role that rail can play in supporting the economy, providing a good alternative to driving, and reducing greenhouse gases. Although moving my family across the country was certainly a big change for all of us, I feel fortunate to be a part of the team managing this high-quality service.
KB: What do you see as your biggest opportunity in your new role here?
RP: CCJPA is well positioned to set an example in the country for what high quality rail service can be. We are fortunate to have transportation funding available to make improvements to technology, expand service, and seek other innovations. Many other railroads in the country are struggling just to maintain the service they have today. I bring to the group a lot of experience managing projects and I look forward to helping the CCJPA deliver.
KB: And what do you see as the biggest challenge?
RP: I suspect one of our challenges in the coming years will be keeping up with the demand for service, particularly as people continue to discover this alternative. Agencies that see big increases in ridership often struggle with growing pains and my hope is that I can help the organization respond and maintain the high quality service our customers expect.
KB: What do you love most about living in the San Francisco Bay Area?
RP: There is a lot to love, but mostly being able to be outside year round. I love to bike, ski, hike, and be on the water. California is the perfect place to do all of that. My wife is originally from Florida, so she was happy to say goodbye to the snow. I would add that I love seeing all of the bikers around the area and on our trains.