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Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) President and Executive Director Gary Thomas has been named outstanding public transit manager of the year by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA).
The award honors individuals who actively advance the public transportation industry, demonstrate long-range planning ability, and illustrate a disciplined approach toward sustainable growth and expansion, DART officials said in a press release. Award recipients also must embrace technology, other resources and collaboration to make public transit accessible.Under Thomas' 20-year tenure at DART, the agency's rail system has grown to 90 miles. Last year, DART also introduced a new electric streetcar service in downtown Dallas.In addition, the agency in 2014 opened the last segment of its Orange Line to the new Dallas/Forth Worth International Airport Station.Thomas' contributions "have helped North Texas become a national model for regional transportation collaboration," said U.S. Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Texas).Thomas will be honored Sept. 13 at APTA's annual meeting in Los Angeles. The event also will feature a product showcase with more than 120 exhibitors on Sept. 12.The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority is hosting APTA's annual conference, which runs Sept. 12 through Sept. 14.