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Metra Announces Revitalization of Citizens Advisory Board

(January 19, 2011) - 
In an effort to incorporate more community input on Metra policies and services, Metra announces the return of the Citizens Advisory Board.
In December 2010, the Metra Board of Directors took steps to reestablish the Metra Citizens Advisory Board (CAB). CAB will hold its first meeting January 21. The original CAB was in place for many years and became inactive as members left the group. Metra has long recognized that in order to provide quality service and programs for its passengers, voices along the service-corridors need to be heard. Metra Director James C. LaBelle will serve as the CAB liaison with the Metra Board of Directors.
“Passengers and residents along our service lines are very important to Metra,” LaBelle said. “We have a dynamic group of individuals who have agreed to serve on our Citizens Advisory Board and they will serve as our eyes and ears in and around the community. Their input will have direct results as to how Metra’s Board of Directors act.”
The function of the CAB is to meet with the Metra Board of Directors quarterly and provide counsel on how Metra policies, programs and services affect the area constituents for each representative. Members of the Metra Board of Directors are each appointing a delegate to the council. CAB members are appointed to a two-year term and will serve without compensation. Per the statute in the Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) Act establishing a formal board comprised of area residents, the CAB designation process is designed to ensure that the ethnic, cultural and geographic diversity of residents in the counties served by Metra is represented. 
Members so far include Gary McClung, appointed by Director Arlene J. Mulder (suburban Cook County); Patricia Mahon, appointed by Director Edward W. Paesel (suburban Cook County); Jamy L. Lyne, appointed by Director Jack E. Partelow (Will County); Sue Klinkhamer, appointed by Director Caryl J. Van Overmeiren (Kane County); Jeffrey A. Berman, appointed by Director James C. LaBelle (Lake County); Ernest Sawyer, appointed by Director Larry A. Huggins (Chicago); Timothy Calcagno, appointed by Director James V. Dodge (suburban Cook County); and Robert J. Nunamaker, appointed by Director Jack Schaffer (McHenry County).
In addition to the appointees from Metra’s Board of Directors, two original CAB members will serve a new term. They are C. Robert Wahlen, appointed by the South Suburban Mass Transit District, and Pamela Pelizarri, appointed by the West Suburban Mass Transit District.
At the first new CAB meeting, the group will set the agenda for the coming year and address critical issues affecting Metra passengers.
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