The Regional Transit Service’s award-winning Transit Center, which was named 2016 Project of the Year by the American Public Works Association, is not only a triumph of customer-focused, aesthetically pleasing design and meticulous construction management. This strikingly handsome, state of the art facility in downtown Rochester, New York is also the product of RTS Chief Executive Officer Bill Carpenter’s close partnership with his Board of Directors and his aggressive outreach to key community stakeholders, including local elected officials.
As Bill recounts in this fascinating new podcast, his years of executive experience in business imbued him with a strong customer orientation that is reflected in the Transit Center’s design. And his stint in government, including serving as county budget director, before joining RTS in 2010 as Chief Operating Officer and taking the helm in 2011, taught him valuable lessons he put to good use in building a strong regional coalition in support of the new Transit Center.
Nothing if not a board-savvy CEO, Bill sees the fourteen members of his Board of Directors as one of RTS’s most precious assets, and has worked in close partnership with the Board since becoming CEO. Accordingly, he made sure that Board members felt strong ownership of the Transit Center, by intensively engaging them from the get-go in shaping the new Transit Center’s design and in securing critical support from local elected officials in the region.
You’ll be interested in Bill’s description of the RTS strategic planning process. Far from merely submitting a finished, staff-produced plan to the Board to thumb through, Bill treats strategic planning as the “gold standard” vehicle for involving his Board in a meaningful fashion at a high level – in updating long-range strategic directions and selecting the strategic initiatives that will be added to RTS’s innovation portfolio each year.