MARS elects 2018 officers

Written by William C. Vantuono, Editor-in-Chief
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New MARS President Harry Zander of Trinity Rail (left) is congratulated by outgoing President Michael Barth, who was honored for his leadership at the 2018 Winter Meeting in January.

The Midwest Association of Rail Shippers (MARS) elected its 2018 slate of officers at its annual Winter Meeting earlier in January.

The 2018 MARS officers are Harry Zander, Trinity Rail, Chicago (President); Tom Surma, Ingredion, Westchester, Ill. (First Vice President); and Stefan Loeb, Watco Companies, Downers Grove, Ill. (Second Vice President).

Newly elected to the MARS Executive Committee are Luke Jones, GATX, Chicago; Katie Tamisiea, Union Pacific, Chicago; Kevin Zimski, Cargill, Wayzata, Minn.; Robert Babcock, Indiana Rail Road, Indianapolis; Chad Hartwig, Fairmount Sanitrol, Wedron, Ill.; Michael Kelly, FreightCar America, Chicago, Ill.; Matt O’Kray, Canadian Pacific Railroad, Chicago; and Dave Murawski, Union Tank Car, Chicago.

“An outstanding attendance of 850 marked the two-day 2018 Winter Meeting in Lombard, Ill., where the officers were elected,” said MARS spokesperson Bill Fahrenwald of James Street Associates. “The MARS 2018 Annual Summer Meeting will be held July 16–17 at the Grand Geneva Resort, Lake Geneva, Wisc. Information will be available at in the coming months.”

The Midwest Association of Rail Shippers is one of five regional North American associations under the North American Rail Shippers (NARS) national organization. Headquartered in the Chicago area, MARS “provides an open forum for discussion and resolution of rail transportation issues by bringing railroads, shippers, receivers, and rail supply companies together twice annually for formal meetings in the Chicago area.”

To review the most recent meeting presentations, and to inquire about MARS membership, visit the MARS website at

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