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11/14/2008



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Amtrak honors rail leaders at Illinois, Wisconsin DOTs


Amtrak recently recognized two state department of transportation leaders with its Distinguished State Partners honor as part of the national intercity passenger railroad's annual Presidential Safety and Service Awards (PSSA).

Amtrak recognized George Weber, the Illinois DOT's acting chief of the Bureau of Railroads, and Ron Adams, director of rail and harbors for the Wisconsin DOT. PSSA award winners are nominated by their peers and their accomplishments are considered by a national committee of Amtrak employees.

A 17-year Illinois state employee, Weber played a role in launching frequent service on three state-sponsored Amtrak corridors. At Weber's request, Amtrak has completed two new route studies and is making progress on a third. He also is helping to address Amtrak's equipment shortage and pushing for funding to install a signal system that would enable 110 mph operation on the Chicago-to-Springfield route.

A 24-year Wisconsin state employee, Adams has helped oversee significant improvements to Amtrak's Chicago-to-Milwaukee Hiawatha service. Amtrak now operates seven daily round trips on the route, which features new stations, automated ticketing machines, accessible platforms, parking lots and waiting areas. Adams continues to work with Amtrak and host railroads to further increase service frequency.



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