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Rail News: High-Speed Rail

California high-speed authority tabs Alstom exec as next leader


Today, the California High Speed Rail Authority (CHSRA) named Roelof van Ark chief executive officer to succeed Mehdi Morshed, who recently retired after serving as the authority’s director since 1998.

For the past five years, Van Ark, 58, has served as president of Alstom Transportation Inc., the North American subsidiary of France’s Alstom SA. He will assume his CHSRA post on June 1.

“California is leading the nation in high-speed rail,” van Ark said in a prepared statement. “I have seen how high-speed rail projects transform the places where they’re built, creating incredible new opportunities. As someone who has devoted his career to the industry, there’s no doubt in my mind that California is the place to be.”

Van Ark previously served as president of aviation security for Invision Technologies Inc. He also spent more than 20 years as an executive, managing director, general manager, senior technical manager and senior project engineer for Siemens.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 5/6/2010