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Progressive Railroading names 2015 'Rising Stars'


Today, Progressive Railroading is announcing 20 individuals selected by the magazine's editorial staff as "Rising Stars" of North America's railroad industry for 2015.

The magazine defines a Rising Star as someone under the age of 40 who has made, or is making, a positive impact on his or her company, organization, department or team, and is viewed by others — peers, colleagues, supervisors, clients or associates — as an up-and-coming leader in the rail industry.

During a nomination process that lasted several months, Progressive Railroading readers submitted nearly 200 nominations of individuals who work for Class Is, regionals, short lines, passenger railroads, transit agencies, government agencies, academic institutions, engineering firms or suppliers.

This year's 20 honorees were chosen based on their contributions to the railroad industry, career achievements, demonstrated leadership, professional association activity or community involvement. Their stories will be profiled on this summer, and published in the magazine's September issue.

Additionally, the 2015 Rising Stars will be recognized at a dinner to be held July 19 in conjunction with the American Association of Railroad Superintendents' 2015 Annual Meeting at the Grand Historic Venue in Baltimore. For more information about the dinner, visit the Rising Stars website.

The Rising Stars for 2015 and the organizations they work for are:

Francois Belanger, CN
Todd Blaylock, HNTB Corp.
Jonathan Chastek, Wheeling & Lake Erie Railway Co.
Oliver Dolder, Railtech Welding & Equipment
John Riley Edwards, RailTEC, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Stefan Loeb, Watco Cos. LLC
Jessica Moore, Union Pacific Railroad
Amanda Nightingale, King County Metro Transit
Celia Ann Pfleckl, Amtrak
Charles Rennick, Providence & Worcester Railroad Co.
Kaleigh Reyes, GE Transportation
Rebecca Reyes-Alicea, Federal Railroad Administration
Bruno Riendeau, VIA Rail Canada Inc.
Curtis Shogren, CSX Transportation
Alanna Strohecker, AECOM
Keith Tarkalson, Stacy & Witbeck
Brett Urquhart, Rocla Concrete Tie Inc.
Tara Vesey, Dakota Gasification Co.
Lexie Walker, Metra
Adam Weiskittel, BNSF Railway Co.