to Had Rail Station Foundation|
By Kevin McCarty
Dittmar, the former director of the Surface Transportation Policy Project
(STPP), has been selected to serve as President and CEO of The Great
American Station Foundation, the non-profit organization which was
established in 1996 to promote community economic development through the
preservation of America's railroad stations.
STPP's director during the legislative campaign to renew the Intermodal
Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA), Dittmar led this
coalition in partnership with the Conference of Mayors and other local
government groups to preserve the ISTEA framework, a successful campaign
that culminated in the enactment of "TEA-21" last year.
brings an extensive background in local government transportation issues
which predates his work at STPP. He
was Manager of Legislation and Finance at the Metropolitan Transportation
Commission in the San Francisco Bay area, an agency that is regarded as
one of the premier regional transportation organizations in the nation. He was previously the Director of the Santa Monica Airport
and also served as a senior analyst for a transit agency.
Executive Director J. Thomas Cochran praised this appointment, stating,
"For a number of years, Hank Dittmar has been closely
associated with the Conference of Mayors on a number of initiatives and
has worked extensively with many of the nation's mayors.
In his new capacity, we look forward to stronger ties with Hank and
The Foundation in helping communities preserve and redevelop the nation's
rail stations, key assets in our cities which will benefit from his
leadership and expertise."
directing The Great American Station Foundation, Dittmar will guide key
programs that include the awarding of revitalization grants to communities
for rail station modernization and development.
Since 1996, the Foundation has awarded 24 such grants to
communities throughout the country. It
also partners with the National Trust for Historic Preservation in
sponsoring the Endangered Stations list.
on the appointment, Foundation Chair Tom Downs, who is the Vice President
and CEO of the National Association of Homebuilders and a former Amtrak
President, said, "He has the knowledge and leadership skills to use
stations as an effective tool for community redevelopment."
serving with Down on the Board overseeing the Foundation's work is
Meridian Mayor John Robert Smith, who also serves as a member of the
Amtrak Board and a leader of the Conference's work on inter-city passenger