Monday, September 13, 2010

Aadnesen new Alaska Railroad chief executive

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Christopher Aadnesen, a veteran railroad executive with extensive experience in international as well as domestic operations, has joined the Alaska Railroad Corp. as president and CEO. He is scheduled to start later this month.

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Currently a resident of Georgetown, Tex., and a Vice President at HNTB Corp., Aadnesen’s most recent railroad chief executive experience was three years as CEO of Estonian Railways, where he successfully focused on profitability, safety performance, real estate assets, and increased freight and passenger service operations. He has held senior corporate positions with a wide array of railroads including Union Pacific, Transportacion Ferroviaria Mexicana (now Kansas City Southern de Mexico), The Texas Mexican Railway Co., Houston Port Terminal Railroad Association, and Estonian Railways. Aadnesen led the team of U.S. railroaders that established TFM operations in Mexico following privatization of the country’s national system in the late 1990s, and was TFM’s first chief operating officer.

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“Chris Aadnesen has the railroad experience we are looking for in our next chief executive,” said Alaska Railroad Board Chairman John Binkley. “He has proven leadership within the railroad industry, with nearly four decades of strategic management performance that demonstrate insightful business planning, as well as excellent labor relations, government, and public communications skills. We are impressed with his knowledge of the industry issues that we face today and in the foreseeable future. With leadership, we are ready to focus on the basics of railroading.”

“I have spent all of my post-graduate life working in the railroad industry and am excited about the opportunity to work for the Alaska Railroad,” said Aadnesen, noting his experience has included nearly every work discipline or department involved with railroad management.

In 2009, the Alaska Railroad earned $170 million in total revenue and employed 660.