Director Michael W. Lewis was appointed to the RTA Board of Directors in December, 2013, representing suburban Cook County. We thank him for contributing to Black History Month.
As we celebrate Black History month, I am frequently reminded of the important role that transportation plays in supporting and sustaining communities of color in today’s complex landscape. We in the Chicago region are fortunate to have a transportation system that allows us to have an alternative means of transportation each day that is the envy of many other communities. While recently on vacation in Florida, I mentioned to a local resident that I was from Chicago. The first thing he said was how fortunate Chicago is to have such a great public transportation system.
However this wasn’t always the case – many of the marches, freedom rides, and bus boycotts we acknowledge during Black History Month remind us that transportation was not always an opportunity for everyone. As a member of the RTA Board of Directors I share both a special sense of pride and duty to continuously do my best to assure we have the best possible transportation system to serve the needs of all residents not only in Cook County but the entire metropolitan area. I have the greatest respect and admiration for the dedicated professionals who work each day to deliver transportation services. I feel a special sense of duty to level the playing field for all providers, especially Minority Owned Businesses. Stronger businesses mean opportunity for all. While not perfect, I feel good about the progress that has been made and the ongoing process to improve.
We have a diverse team of professionals on both the board and staff levels. It is well known that diverse teams provide insight and perspective that could not be obtained without the richness and diversity of thoughts and experience all members bring to the table. It is my sincere hope that as we go forward we will continue to bring talented resources to assure we make our system the best it can be for all residents.
RTA Board Member