Suarez Stepping Down as DCTA CEOWritten by Marybeth Luczak, Executive Editor
The Board of Directors for Denton County (Tex.) Transportation Authority reported on March 7 that it had accepted the resignation of CEO Raymond Suarez. When Suarez steps down on March 31, DCTA Deputy Paul Cristina will serve as interim CEO.
DCTA runs the 21-mile A-Train commuter railroad (see map below) as well as the Denton and Lewisville Connect Bus, University of North Texas (UNT) Campus Shuttles, and North Texas Xpress commuter bus.
Suarez joined DCTA as Chief Operating Officer in 2014 and became CEO in September 2018. “Immediately after being appointed, he led the agency through the legislative reconstitution of the Board of Directors and led the agency through a transformation initiative during the COVID-19 pandemic to better respond to market changes,” DCTA said. “He was instrumental in unifying relationships with Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) and Trinity Metro, thereby creating joint efforts in many areas that serve the three North Texas agencies. Most recently, he worked with DART to forge an agreement to construct a joint rail facility to support the DCTA A-train and DART Silver Line operations and launched new GoZone on-demand mobility services throughout DCTA’s three member cities.”
Suarez has more than 30 years of experience in the public and private sector. Prior to DCTA, he served as Chief Administrative Officer for Trinity Railway Express (TRE) and held multiple leadership roles at DART, Reactrix Systems, General Dynamics, Superconducting Supercollider and Trans Industries, and Vultron Inc.
The Board is slated to discuss launching a search for Suarez’s replacement at its March 24 meeting. Paul Cristina, who will serve as interim CEO, joined DCTA in December 2021.
“I am very thankful to the Board of Directors and staff for the constant support and I’m proud of the culture we have created based on Servant Leadership principles,” Suarez said in a statement. “It is very rewarding to see ridership growing to pre-pandemic levels so quickly after launching the system-wide GoZone program. Through this transformation journey, the agency is now more accessible, responsive, and resilient and able to respond to the communities we serve and that’s a great feeling of accomplishment.”