Friday, April 13, 2007

Paul Foer-Annapolis-based Transit Guy and Blogger

Dear Dr Transit Friends:

Transit is cool. Transit impacts and involves everything. Transit can lead, follow or get out of the way, but when it work right, it is terrific! I am pleased to be affiliated with this blog and Mr. Layman. I was born in DC, and am the son of a second-generation Washingtonian. I grew up in the Maryland burbs, occasionally taking the old DC Transit "L" buses up and down Connecticut Avenue and riding my old Schwinn Stingray everywhere, including up Rockville Pike, on the C and O, downtown--and without a helmet! My Dad owned a store which was razed to become Metro Center and he attended the groundbreaking ceremony in 1970 and gathered the first shovel-fulls of earth. They were made into goblets and models of the early Metro. I went to the White House one rainy morning to present them to President Ford, but that's another story.

I have a professional background in both land and marine transportation. From 1998 through 2005, I served as the transportation marketing specialist for the City of Annapolis and oversaw major changes and improvements in customer outreach, signage and communications during which time ridership more than doubled.

I applied for and received grants and awards and was a presenter at three National CTAA (Community Transportation Association of America)Expos. After being selected as a National Transit Institute Fellow, I developed and taught a highly acclaimed class on creating transit marketing plans to small systems all over the country. Through this and other private work, I have been a speaker or trainer at transportation meetings in 15 states and Washington, DC. I've published in Community Transportation, Bus Ride, and Metro magazines. In 2004 I was one of 13 transit professionals selected to participate in an International Transit Cooperative Research Study Mission to South America.

I mentioned marine transportation as I am a US Merchant Marine Officer and have operated private and commercial vessels for transportation and recreational purposes. I also move private yachts for clients and do other marine work.
Currently I am writing a blog about Annapolis politics called Capital Punishment, working to improve transportation options in our region and doing some consulting and writing for the National Transit Institute, through Rutgers University.

I've been fortunate to have traveled widely and used transit in many countries ranging from the tubes, ferries, BritRail and double deckers in England, to the Paris metro, buses, bicycles and the Tran Grand Vitesse in France to Eged buses and even the train in Israel. I have taken long bus trips in Mexico, Belize and Brazil (even the famed bus in Curitiba)and used many train, ferry or bus systems in Chile, Argentina, and Ecuador. In the US I've taken Greyhound, Amtrak, ferries, urban trains and buses in most of our larger cities and have enjoyed some of the newest and most acclaimed lightrail in Minneapolis, Salt Lake and St. Louis--even the heritage streetcars in San Francisco, New Orleans and the people mover in Miami! Transit is cool.


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