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Metrolink Chief Executive Officer Michael DePallo has announced he will step down from his post Jan. 2 to "pursue other opportunities."DePallo was hired in October 2012 to lead the agency through a "critical period of revitalization and growth," Metrolink officials said in a press release.Under DePallo's leadership, Metrolink is on the verge of becoming the first passenger railroad to implement positive train control, they said. The agency also will be the nation's first to employ Tier 4-compliant locomotives, which will reduce emissions more than 80 percent compared with current units.During his tenure, DePallo led the agency amid financial challenges brought to light in 2013 and formed a new finance team that stabilized the organization's financial position, Metrolink officials said."Metrolink has a talented staff and a dedicated, forward-looking board that are committed to safety and innovation and will continue to do great things to enhance mobility for the Southern California region," said DePallo in a prepared statement.DePallo's resignation comes weeks after the railroad's chief auditor, Barbara Manning, was placed on leave by Metrolink's board. Manning had been examining "financial and management irregularities" at the railroad, according to a Los Angeles Times report. She was terminated on Dec. 12, the newspaper reported. Three chief financial officers have also left Metrolink in the past year.DePallo previously served as director and general manager of the Port Authority Trans Hudson Corp., and held various leadership posts at Bay Area Rapid Transit, the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority and Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority.