The American Public Transportation Foundation (APTF) Board of Directors has announced the establishment of the Valarie J. McCall Scholarship in honor of the 2015-2016 American Public Transportation Association (APTA) Chair Valarie J. McCall, who is also a board member of the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority.
At the APTA Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C. last week, the APTF Board of Directors thanked McCall, who served two two-year terms as a member of the APTF board, for her support of the foundation and her commitment to the future leaders of the public transportation industry.
"APTF is honored to create this named scholarship for Valarie McCall," said APTF Chair Jennifer Mitchell, director of the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation. "As chair of the APTA Board of Directors she has focused on building collaboration in the transit industry, and she has long been a leader within the city of Cleveland. This APTF scholarship will recognize her contributions to APTA and to the entire transit industry for years to come."
The Valarie J. McCall Scholarship will be awarded for the first time in 2016 to a deserving applicant who is pursuing studies in urban transportation planning or public administration with a focus on transportation.
"I am humbled to have an APTF scholarship named after me," said McCall. "Developing the next generation of leaders is an issue that is extremely important. This scholarship will be awarded to public service minded students who want to be transportation leaders."
This scholarship, which totals $59,000, was made possible by 105 individual contributors.
"I want to thank everyone who contributed to this scholarship, including the APTA Business Member Board of Governors, HNTB, HDR, the Solis Group, Legacy Resource Group and Olivier Incorporated," said McCall. "All the sponsors of the scholarship should be commended for their generosity."
The mission of APTF is to retain and increase the number of individuals choosing a career in public transportation by providing scholarships and engagement opportunities to deserving students and transit professionals. Since its founding in 1988, APTF has awarded more than 250 scholarships totaling more than $800,000. The cumulative impact of nurturing a new generation of public transit professionals has been immeasurable. In 2015, 32 deserving recipients were awarded $110,000 in scholarships — the highest single-year amount in APTF history.