My September 9 post – “Learn From a Dynamic Board Chair-CEO Partnership” – features Dave Stackrow, Board Chair, and Carm Basile, Chief Executive Officer, of the Capital District Transportation Authority, talking about their very close and productive working relationship. In two or three weeks, we’ll be posting a podcast here by Steve Bland, Chief Executive Officer of the Nashville MTA, and Nat Ford, Chief Executive Officer of the Jacksonville Transportation Authority, talking about steps they’ve taken over the years to cement their partnerships with their board chairs.
There’s pretty wide agreement that the board savviest public transportation CEOs make a real effort to help their board chairs set clear leadership targets (the desired impacts of their term as board chair) and go out of their way to help their chairs achieve these targets. These board-savvy CEOs think of this as a kind of non-monetary compensation for their chairs. I think you’ll find this video of Greg Hughes – now a member and then Chair of the Utah Transit Authority’s Board of Trustees – discussing the nature of the Board Chair role at UTA quite informative and thought-provoking. As you’ll see, Greg, who doesn’t waste time spouting platitudes about the board chair’s role, has a firm grasp of the specific priorities that deserve his close attention as chair. As you listen to Greg talking about his role, you might ask yourself how you can help your chair achieve comparable clarity about her/his role as part of building a sound working relationship with the chair.