Statement of PCAC Executive Director William Henderson to the
MTA Board New York City Transit and Bus Committee
July 20, 2015
I’m speaking before you today to express our thanks to Carmen Bianco for his leadership of the Department of Subways and NYC Transit over the past five years. As there are no August Board meetings, we wanted to take this opportunity to salute Carmen.
There’s an apocryphal saying supposedly translated from the Chinese “May you live in interesting times.” Whether or not that saying exists in its original language, I think we can agree that you’ve had the interesting times. Through snowstorms, a couple of major coastal storms, the coming of 6 million riders per day on the subways as a routine event, and all of the other events that can befall the system, you’ve led your staff with candor, professionalism, skill and, when appropriate, humor. The riders appreciate that, and although your public opinion ratings are as good as the previous day’s commute, there’s been a lot more positive than negative in the work that you’ve done here.
The thing that I most appreciate about your time here is that you understand that in the end NYC Transit is about moving people rather than moving equipment. That’s clear in your emphasis on the rider’s experience in operating the Transit system. We salute you for your emphasis on maintaining evenly spaced service, even if it makes on-time performance look worse. I think it’s no coincidence that many of the leaders of NYC Transit have spent time in System Safety, where the human element is so critical to performance.
In closing, we wish you all the best in your retirement. You leave NYC Transit as an organization that is stronger to meet today’s and tomorrow’s challenges and has a vision for the future, and that’s all riders can ask for.
Download here: 072015 Board Statement – Bianco Retirement