The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) began in 1913 when the Oregon Legislature created the Oregon Highway Commission to “get Oregon out of the mud.” Today, ODOT develops and operates a diverse portfolio of programs related to Oregon’s system of:
Highways, roads, and bridges (including bikeways and walkways)
Public Transportation Services
Transportation safety programs
Driver licensing and vehicle titling/registration
Motor carrier/trucking regulation
ODOT manages a $3.9 billion budget that impacts the daily lives of every individual, business and community in the state as well as the millions who visit and do business in Oregon every year. The agency operates under the direction of the Oregon Transportation Commission (OTC), which sets strategy and policy for the state transportation system. Together, the OTC and ODOT work closely with the governor and state legislature to ensure efforts to maintain and enhance the system are aligned with the broader needs, priorities and resources of the state.
ABOUT THE RAIL AND PUBLIC TRANSIT DIVISION
In 2012, Rail and Public Transit Divisions merged under a single Administrator. The intent of this merger was to integrate these divisions within the larger organization. A charge from the governor's office, and subsequently the Oregon Transportation Commission directed ODOT to consider all modes of transportation when developing transportation solutions. While the core work of Rail and Public Transit is different, availability of this unique expertise to the entire department is key to achieving intermodal goals.
The Rail portion of Rail and Public Transit Division (RPTD) is the focal point for ODOT's freight and passenger rail programs that address the safety of railroads operating in the state, the safety of public road-railroad crossings and rail transit operations, the conditions of the railroad industry and the development of passenger and freight rail transportation opportunities. The division represents and advocates for passenger and freight customers of railroads, to ensure a safe, efficient and reliable rail transportation system. The division includes the Rail Safety Section, the Crossing Safety Section, Oregon's Passenger Rail program - with the Cascades which operates up to Vancouver BC, Rail Planning and Projects.
The Public Transit portion of RPTD is responsible for implementing public transportation programs through policy, guidance, technical assistance, oversight and grant administration to over 200 public transportation providers and communities. Grant assistance is provided to cover planning, operating costs and investments in vans, buses, facilities and other equipment to offer people mobility alternatives.
ABOUT THE POSITION
The Administrator oversees activities and programs of the Rail and Public Transit Division. This position sets goals and objectives for the Division and determines statewide policy, priorities and resource allocation to support those goals. The RPTD Administrator represents the Agency on State and National Committees, works with Commissions and Legislators and negotiates with other state or country DOTs as well as private rail companies. This position has responsibility for contracts, purchases and projects ranging from $1 million to $40M and has principal decision authority for these projects and programs and is ultimately responsible for their success.
This position is a member of ODOT's Executive Management Team and leads a team of 60 with a budget of $380 million. In addition, this position oversees the Public Transportation Advisory Committee and the Rail Advisory Committee who are directly responsible to the Oregon Transportation Commission. This position is the legislative contact and liaison for rail and public transportation issues and information.
In addition, the Rail and Public Transit Division Administrator:
Represents the state in on-going relations with federal agencies, including the Federal Railroad Administration, Federal Transit Administration, the Surface Transportation Board, Federal Highway Administration, Amtrak and the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials.
Manages real property of 155 miles of railroad right of way and the Salem railroad station, including negotiating leases and issuing permits and private crossing agreements in cooperation with the operating railroad that has an exclusive easement over the
Oversees and manage relationships with over 200 transit agencies, districts, cities, counties, Metropolitan Planning Organizations, private railroads, shippers, port authorities, tribes, transit providers and other stakeholders. Provides oversight of federally funded asset inventory, including 1400 vehicles, transit facilities, passenger shelters and other capital assets.
Oversees the implementation of the Statewide Transportation Improvement Fund (STIF), authorized by the 2017 Oregon State legislature. STIF provides a new stable source of state transit funding, estimated at $100 million per year. The 2019 legislative assembly included a budget note requiring the merger of the STIF and the state’s Special Transportation Fund. Legislative action in 2020 could require oversight of the implementation of the merger of the two programs.
Formulates Oregon's strategic vision and direction for freight and passenger rail systems and public transportation systems in support of the department's mission. Manage ODOT's strategy and policy for engaging the private and public sector entities in significant rail and public transportation projects to implement the strategic vision and direction. Direct and oversee development of statewide modal and topic plans, including the Rail Mode Plan, the Oregon Public Transportation Plan, and the Rail Corridor Operations Plan.
Defines the division's structure, goals and objectives; ensure the integration of rail operations and safety and public transportation into the long-range planning efforts; oversee consistency with department goals and statutory requirements and advance department rail and public transportation goals throughout the department and the state.
Provide leadership and direction on the ODOT Executive Management Team to ensure that the vision and policies of the Oregon Transportation Plan, the Oregon Public Transportation Plan, the Oregon Rail Plan, Rail Corridor Operations Plan and the Transportation Options Topic Plan are realized.
The Ideal Candidate
ODOT is seeking a talented, transparent and unifying leader to bring creativity and strong leadership skills to the Division. Candidates should bring strengths in high-level internal management. The ideal candidate must have the ability to promote collaboration on a statewide basis and serve as a key facilitator with local transit agencies, federal partners, elected leaders, business, tribes and non-profits.
The overarching core competencies of this position are:
Inspiring and Courageous Leadership: Ability to inspire, persuade, engage, speak straight-forwardly about complex transit issues, make tough decisions and take difficult actions. Display balanced thinking that combines analysis, wisdom, experience and perspective. Produce data-driven decisions that withstand the “test of time.”
Creativity and Innovation: Ability to generate new, innovative and visionary approaches that are effective and responsive. Brings a perspective on emerging and leading rail and public transit trends and best practices.
Build a Talented, Effective Staff Team: Hire, mentor, develop, retain, and manage a diverse staff. Assemble and reinforce a cohesive, dedicated, highly effective inter-disciplinary team. Ability to lead a team through change processes.
Business and Management Acumen: Ability to manage human, financial and information resources strategically. Brings innovative approaches and solutions, including grant sources and public/private partnerships to rail and public transit funding challenges. Measure success based on results. Set high standards of performance using metrics and benchmarks to track progress.
Cultural Competency: Focus on equity and social justice in ways that enable effective working relationships in diverse communities and cross-cultural situations. Create transportation solutions for traditionally underserved communities.
Bachelor’s degree plus seven years of progressively responsible experience in a senior rail, public transit or other transportation management role including working in an executive level position at an organization with substantial staff management and budgetary responsibility. Knowledge of the principles and practices of federal and state public transportation and rail program management is preferred. An advanced degree is a plus.
Rail and Public Transit Division is committed to diversity. As RPTD Administrator, this employee must perform duties in a manner that promotes customer service and harmonious working relationships, including treating all persons courteously and respectfully. Demonstrate openness of constructive feedback/criticism and suggestions in an effort to strengthen work performance. Contribute to a positive, respectful and productive work place. Foster and promote the importance and value of a diverse, discrimination- and harassment-free workplace. Respect diversity of opinion, ideas and cultural differences. Support outreach and diversity-related efforts in order to diversity the workforce. The new Administrator will be expected to continue to support and build upon a diverse and inclusive workplace culture.
Persons interested in this job must submit a cover letter and current resume by visiting www.karrasconsulting.net and clicking on “view open positions.”
If you have questions regarding this announcement, please call Marissa Karras at 360-956-1336. The position will remain open until filled; however it is in the best interest of candidates to apply early in that the screening process will move quickly. In order to be considered for the first round of interviews, please submit your application materials by December 4th, 2019
The salary range for this position is $91,032-$134,052. Benefits include comprehensive medical, dental, vision, retirement plan; holiday, vacation, and sick leave. For more information please visit: https://www.oregon.gov/oha/pebb/pages/index.aspx
LIVING IN OREGON
ODOT offers a total work/life package of pay, benefits, flexibility, and workplace opportunities to help you get the most out of your career and your life.
Oregon is a great place to work, play, and be a part of a community. Oregon offers a quality of life that is unsurpassed. From the high-energy urban center of Portland, one of the nation’s top-ranked cities, to the more relaxed pace of rural communities, Oregon’s distinctive Northwest lifestyle blends a progressive, creative culture with a casual nature.
The position is headquartered in Salem, the capital city of Oregon, and home of Willamette University, the oldest university west of the Mississippi. Salem is a sizable community with a small-town feel. Located in the Willamette Valley, it features abundant outdoor recreation, and more than 50 local wineries.
Bisected by the Willamette River, Salem lies just one hour south of Portland, Oregon’s largest city. Portland offers multiple cultural and entertainment opportunities, including major-league sports teams. Pacific Ocean beaches are an hour and a half to the west of Salem; the mountains, ski slopes, and lakes of the Cascade Range are just an hour and a half to the east.
About Oregon Department of Transportation
ABOUT SOUND TRANSIT
Sound Transit plans, builds and operates express bus, light rail and commuter rail services in the Puget Sound region. The Sound Transit District is home to 52 cities and more than 40% of Washington State’s population. In 2016, Sound Transit will provide nearly 34 million rides on its trains and buses.
The initial phase of the regional mass transit system, called Sound Move, was approved by voters in 1996. The second phase, Sound Transit 2 (ST2), was approved in 2008. Under these plans, the regional light rail system will more than double in length from just over 20 miles today to over 50 miles by 2023. Service is also increasing on the 83-mile Sounder commuter rail line from Everett to Lakewood, and ST Express buses continue to serve major highways in the region.
Even with these improvements, transportation continues to be one of the area’s biggest challenges with approximately 800,000 more people expected to call this region home by 2040. Also by 2040 the region will support 800,000 new jobs. In the past year alone, the region’s population grew by 52,000 people – making daily commutes longer and more congested.
In response, Sound Transit 3 (ST3) provides t...he next phase of high-capacity transit improvements for central Puget Sound. With the recent passage of this $54 billion ballot measure the light rail system will more than double again to 116 miles with over 80 stations.
Sound Transit is growing. Today there are 788 employees and it is estimated that by the year 2020 there will be approximately 1200 employees.