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Sign o' the Times: What the White House Honors, Metro Atlanta Voters Reject

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In the search for an example of the word bittersweet playing out in real life, one could do worse than talk to Dr. Beverly Scott today. As metro Atlanta voters turned out to soundly reject the T-SPLOST referendum, the veteran transit executive (and current MARTA General Manager/CEO) was in Washington, D.C. being honored by President Obama and others as a "transit champion." To hear Dr. Scott speak of her work at MARTA often involves getting a mini history lesson in transit systems around the country, particularly the 'generation' that brought BART to the San Francisco Bay Area, the Metro to Washington, D.C. and MARTA to Atlanta. And she is well-qualified to offer such lessons, having held executive positions at some of the country's largest transit systems (including Washington, D.C. and New York). Sadly, Dr. Scott's 5-year tenure at MARTA ends with voters declining to help the system grasp its unrealized potential, and in doing so, ignoring myriad benefits and long-term strategic positioning advocated by many experts. These include Dr. Scott, whose post-MARTA career will include the Vice-Chairmanship of the National Infrastructure Advisory Council (NIAC). Perhaps this role will give Atlanta the chance to once again avail itself of her expertise and experience.

· The White House honors MARTA’s Beverly Scott as transit champion [Saporta Report]