Arthur T. Leahy, the newly arrived of CEO of the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transporation Authority is a former bus driver himself, and has transit in his genes.
The sixty-year-old began his transit career in 1971 driving for the Southern California Rapid Transit District, the MTA's predecessor, while going to college. He worked his way up to head operations and oversaw bus ops before taking a lead position at Minnepolis' transit agency in 1997, then jumped ship to be CEO of Orange County's MTA in 2001.
Leahy really does have transportation in his blood: both of his parents and his wife and brother worked for LA public transit agencies.
Local news from across Southern California
His folks met while driving street cars, according to the Daily News.
The announcement of his post was made Thursday morning at a special meeting of the MTA board of directors.
Leahy begins his new job -- with an annual salary of $310,000 -- April 6.
The current CEO, 63-year-old Roger Snoble, announced his retirement in December after heading the transit agency for seven years.
Snoble was one of the driving forces behind Measure R, the recently approved half-cent sales tax to fund transportation projects. He has said that he wants Metro to have an executive who will commit to stay with the agency for the next four or five years as new projects are started with the tax funds.
Collection of Measure R funds will begin in July.