Members of NEORide’s Board of Directors announced that Katherine Conrad has been appointed to serve as the first full-time executive director of the organization.
Conrad, who has been a member of NEORide’s leadership team since the group was founded in 2014, will assume her new position effective December 1, 2023.
“Katherine Conrad has been the driving force behind NEORide’s remarkable growth from a group of four Ohio-based transit systems to a consortium of 29 agencies operating in seven states,” NEORide Board President Ben Capelle said. “She played a key role in the development and deployment of innovative technology including the EZfare mobile ticketing app, has successfully fostered communication and collaboration among member systems, and secured tens of millions of dollars in state and federal grants that have enabled us to expand and enhance service."
Katherine Conrad, NEORide Highlights
Highlights from Conrad and NEORide over the past nine years:
- In 2019, she spearheaded the development and adoption of the EZfare mobile ticketing app which is now used by 15 systems in Ohio, Kentucky, and Michigan.
- She created a joint procurement program that enables NEORide member systems to leverage their combined buying power to negotiate favorable contract terms and pricing from a wide range of vendors.
- She is now working with multiple systems to develop EZConnect centralized dispatch and customer service centers that will allow transit users in multiple counties to make reservations and schedule rides with just one call or click.
- She was instrumental in securing and administering more than $20 million in state and federal grants that are funding a wide variety of projects and programs.
“I am honored and excited to be selected by the Board to serve as NEORide’s first Executive Director because public transit is both my profession and my passion,” Conrad said. “Since the day NEORide was founded, I’ve worked tirelessly to increase access to and the use of public transit by building relationships between agencies, breaking down artificial barriers that make riding difficult, and enabling system managers to streamline operations and acquire state-of-the-art technology. As the new executive director, I will build upon all we have accomplished, recruit new NEORide members, and do everything possible to strengthen public transit in the seven states we serve and beyond.”