CLEVELAND – Valarie J. McCall, Mayor Frank G. Jackson’s Chief of Government and International Affairs and a Board member of the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) since 2006, was today elected to a one-year term as Chair of the American Public Transportation Association (APTA).
“I am honored to have been elected as Chair," Ms. McCall said. "Public transit is so critical to maintaining a good quality of life, both here and around the country. I look forward to working with APTA, RTA and the City of Cleveland to ensure that public transportation stays on the forefront of discussion in Cleveland, Columbus, and Washington, DC.” Text of full speech. Video.
As Chair, Ms. McCall leads the APTA Board of Directors and its membership of more than 1,500 organizations. APTA, a trade association located in Washington D.C., is the leading force in advancing and improving public transportation in North America.
“Ms. McCall has been a tireless advocate for public transportation and the people of the City of Cleveland,” said Mayor Jackson. “Public transit is not only essential to the economy of Cleveland, but for the nation as a whole. I know she will succeed with this appointment and bring about positive action for the nation’s public transit systems.”
“Valarie McCall is now in a significant position of leadership to be able to bring Cleveland’s needs to the forefront of the funding discussions in Washington, D.C. She will have direct access to the major decision-makers and will be uniquely positioned to best express the need for infrastructure improvements critical to RTA. She is eminently qualified for the task,” said RTA CEO and General Manager Joe Calabrese.
Ms. McCall joined the RTA Board of Trustees in July 2006, and was recently re-appointed to another term ending in 2017. She chairs two important RTA Board committees: Planning and Development and Safety and Security.
She also served on the Cleveland Committee that convinced the Republican National Committee to select Cleveland as the site of the 2016 Convention.
Ms. McCall has compiled a lifetime of achievement in government and public service. In recognition of her career in public service, she was awarded an honorary doctorate from Cleveland State University in 2012. She previously served the City of Cleveland as Director of the Empowerment Zone, and in 2002, became the youngest Clerk of Council in the history of the City.
She now serves on a number of key Boards in Cleveland. Her work and studies have taken her to Japan, and to several European countries, including Greece before the 2004 Olympic Games. A lifetime Cleveland resident, she grew up in the Glenville neighborhood.