Keolis Commuter Services (Keolis), the MBTA’s operating partner for commuter rail, was recognized at the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts’ (ULEM) Centennial Breakfast Tuesday morning. The ULEM named Keolis a 2019 “Diversity and Inclusion Champion” for the company’s commitment to building a diverse workforce and supporting communities of color.
David Scorey, Keolis GM/CEO of Keolis and Gerald Francis, President of Keolis, accepted the award and spoke about the importance of diversity, inclusion and supporting the communities where Keolis operates.
“Keolis is committed to building a diverse workforce representative of the cities and towns served by commuter rail. We are proud to partner with the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts and thankful for their recognition as the 2019 Champion in Diversity and Inclusion,” said Scorey. “It is important that our company be representative of the communities we serve. Diverse teams are essential for effective problem solving, innovation and engagement. I am proud to say that 38 percent of new hires in 2019 are people of color and their backgrounds and skill-sets are contributing to our increasing performance.”
Commuter rail has a ten-year average on-time performance of 87%. Over the last three years commuter rail has averaged 89% on-time and has been operating more than 91% on-time year-to-date in 2019. Keolis is also operating 10,000 more train trips annually for a ridership that has grown 21% since 2012.
ULEM’s mission is to enable adults in Eastern, Massachusetts to overcome racial, social barriers, economic inequities, sexual and domestic violence and to connect them to employment and economic development opportunities. In support of that mission, Keolis is committed to providing safe and reliable service to all the communities within the commuter rail network, connecting people with housing, employment, education and recreation in 8 out of the 10 most diverse cities and towns in Massachusetts.
To further support the communities served by commuter rail, the Keolis Scholars program was launched in 2016 to provide college and workforce training scholarships to 25 graduating high school seniors from around the network. Since then the Keolis Scholars program has awarded $75,000 to students in five urban communities along the commuter rail network. On May 31, Keolis will name 25 new Keolis Scholars from Boston, Brockton, Lawrence, Lowell and Worcester bringing the total amount awarded to $100,000. These scholarships have helped students across our communities attend college or an accredited technical school.
ULEM’s award ceremony was held at Fenway Park and attended by Boston Mayor Martin Walsh, Attorney General Maura Healey, Framingham Mayor Yvonne Spicer and other award recipients and nominees.