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High Profile: GATX, Keolis, Pacific West, STB, STM

Written by Marybeth Luczak, Executive Editor
(Courtesy of Nortrak)

(Courtesy of Nortrak)

GATX Corp. elevated Paul F. Titterton to President of Rail North America. In addition, Keolis North America (Keolis) promoted Ryan Adams to Executive Vice President; Pacific West, LLC named Peter Touesnard CEO; Surface Transportation Board (STB) Member Michelle Schultz has been designated agency Vice Chair; and Société de transport de Montréal (STM) CEO Luc Tremblay is stepping down.

Paul F. Titterton, incoming President of Rail North America, GATX

At GATX, Paul F. Titterton will become President of Rail North America on April 22, succeeding Robert C. Lyons. Lyons is assuming the CEO role following Brian A. Kenney’s retirement as President and CEO, effective April 22.

Kenney will continue to serve on the GATX Board as Non-Executive Chairman until Oct. 31, 2022 to “ensure a seamless transition,” the Chicago-based railcar lessor said in the Dec. 7 announcement of his retirement.

Titterton, currently Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Rail North America, will also be appointed an Executive Vice President of GATX on his transition date. He joined the company in 1997, and has held a variety of positions of increasing responsibility since, including Senior Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer, Rail North America; Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer; Vice President and Group Executive, Fleet Management, Marketing and Government Affairs; and Vice President and Executive Director, Fleet Management.

“Paul has been an integral part of our North American rail business for 25 years,” Lyons said. “His breadth of experience, including senior roles in our commercial and operation functions, makes him the ideal candidate to assume leadership of Rail North America. Paul has a deep understanding of our industry and the customers we serve, complemented by an unparalleled passion for our business.”

“I am honored to lead this outstanding organization,” Titterton said. “I look forward to working with our dedicated employees to continue growing our business.”

Ryan Adams, Executive Vice President of Market Development and Innovation, Keolis

Ryan Adams is now Executive Vice President of Market Development and Innovation at Keolis, an operator of local, commuter, paratransit, and commuter rail services in North America. He joined the company in 2012, and served most recently as Senior Vice President of Strategic Development.

“Ryan’s focus on innovation and partnerships will help Keolis to further modernize transit systems and develop new solutions that will benefit passengers and their communities,” Keolis President and CEO David Scorey said. “This is a role that requires exactly the level of passion, energy and intellectual curiosity that Ryan has shown.”

Peter Touesnard has joined industrial and mechanical contracting firm Pacific West as CEO, following service as Chief Commercial Officer at short line railroad holding company OmniTRAX.

Peter Touesnard, CEO, Pacific West

“Peter has an exceptional track record fostering business growth,” said Josh Putterman, Founding Partner of Bluejay Capital, which acquired Salt Lake City, Utah-based Pacific West in December 2021. “His extensive career and success in the rail industry afforded him many meaningful relationships that will help drive the expansion of Pacific West’s service offerings. We are thrilled to work alongside Peter, pair him with Chief Operating Officer and Co-owner Dustin Hall and collaborate to help Pacific West grow.”

“I am delighted to join the Pacific West team and lead a company with such a strong history of customers service, attention to detail and workmanship,” Touesnard said.

Pacific West constructs locomotive fueling facilities, rail yard air brake networks, wastewater treatment facilities, above and below ground mechanical facilities, and security fencing; it also provides emergency response, environmental remediation and other services.

STB Board Members Robert Primus and Michelle Schultz

The STB on Feb. 1 announced that Board Member Michelle Schultz has been designated agency Vice Chair. She succeeds Robert Primus, who remains a Board Member. STB’s vice chairmanship rotates among the members on an annual basis. On Nov. 18, 2020, Primus and Schultz were confirmed as the fourth and fifth members of STB. They were sworn in early the following year, giving the STB its full complement of five members, a number set by the 2015 Surface Transportation Board Reauthorization Act.

Luc Tremblay, outgoing CEO, STM

On Jan. 27, STM CEO Luc Tremblay informed the Board of Directors that he would not renew his contract, which expires Dec. 31, 2022. Since STM “plans to spend 2022 preparing the 2030 Strategic Organizational Plan, which will define the next decade of company operations, the parties agreed upon an end date of April 2,” the agency reported.

Tremblay joined STM in 1994 and held a variety of management positions within the Finance department. He was also company Treasurer from 2007-14, after which he became CEO.

“Having spent 28 years at the STM, over seven of which as CEO, Mr. Tremblay can hold his head high knowing all that he has accomplished here,” Board Chair Éric Alan Caldwell said. “He has worked tirelessly to guide the STM through many significant transitions and challenges, not least of which being the pandemic. Under his leadership, the STM has reached an unprecedented operational capacity—including the arrival of 300 new buses and the new Azur trains—improved the state of its infrastructures and achieved significantly higher customer satisfaction levels, which climbed 12 points in five years to 76%.”

“The STM is an exceptional company, and I am proud to have been a part of it,” Tremblay said. “It is one of the top 10 largest companies in Quebec, with roughly 11,000 dedicated, passionate and highly skilled employees. I want to thank each and every one of them for the work they do each day. We are facing not only a health crisis but also the ongoing environmental crisis, for which there is no vaccine. The STM must play a leading role in the fight against greenhouse gases, and it now has many tools at its disposal to spearhead that fight. However, it also needs two key elements to unlock its full potential: an overhaul of public transit funding and more effective metropolitan governance.”

STM reported that the Board will soon begin the process of hiring Tremblay’s successor.

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