Scott Shenk writes about transportation issues affecting Fredericksburg-area residents.
VRE picks interim CEO
With CEO Dale Zehner on his way out and no replacement chosen, the Virginia Railway Express has picked an acting head from the inside.
The VRE operations board on Tuesday announced that Richard Dalton, the director of rail equipment and services, will serve as the acting CEO beginning July 1 as the board continues its search for a new CEO.
“Given Mr. Dalton’s background and his performance since his arrival at VRE, the Board felt very comfortable that he was the right fit to continue moving VRE forward while the Board continues the selection process for the chief executive position,” VRE Operations Board Chairman Wally Covington said in a release.
Dalton, a U.S. Navy veteran, joined VRE in 2009.
VRE spokesman Mark Roeber said Dalton “is a seasoned veteran of rail operations, and particularly the technical and mechanical aspects of the industry with 20 years of experience in the private sector before joining VRE.”
Dalton is appreciative of the board’s decision.
“I am very thankful to the operations board for having the confidence in me to lead VRE in the coming weeks,” said Dalton.
Zehner, also a Navy veteran, started his tenure as head of VRE as interim CEO before being selected to fill the position in 2004. He originally joined VRE in 1995 as a finance manager.
Zehner took over VRE when it was at a critical juncture. VRE trains had reached capacity and growth was expected. And the commuter train service, which started in 1992, has grown.
In recent years the commuter rail service has taken off. Last year VRE set all-time ridership records and so far this year ridership, which regularly tops 20,000 each weekday, is up.
Zehner’s last day will be June 30.
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