As the Administrator at the Southeastern Regional Transit Authority (SRTA), Erik describes his leadership as collaborative and says that, “With each success or failure, I am more motivated to tackle the next issue. Putting our piece of the puzzle in place to improve our customer’s quality of life is the most rewarding part of my job”
What do you do professionally?
I have the pleasure to serve as the Administrator of the Southeastern Regional Transit Authority (SRTA). SRTA is responsible for the bus service on the South Coast. We provide 2.7 million passenger trips each year.
How are you involved in the community and what motivates you to engage?
Public transportation is an essential component to the success of a community. While I have been the Administrator, we have reached out to social service agencies, schools, medical institutions and businesses in our region. By building those relationships we have been able to educate the community about the services we offer as well as learn what needs or gaps in service may exist. That need can vary for each community, agency or individual that we meet. While I know we cannot be everything for everyone, I find it very rewarding when we are able to help solve a problem in our community. With each success or failure I am more motivated to tackle the next issue. Putting our piece of the puzzle in place to improve our customers’ quality of life is the most rewarding part of my job.
What did you find most valuable about the LSC experience and how did it contribute to your community leadership?
When I first arrived at SRTA, I thought I would be able to implement best practices from all the locations I had worked at along the way. While many ideas translated well, others fell short and it took time to understand why. Participating in LSC helped me to see that the Southcoast is very self-sufficient and that while I had worked up and down the eastern seaboard, I did not have to come up with all the answers. What I needed to do was listen to what our customers wanted and then work towards delivering that vision in a sustainable way. I view reliability as the most important quality we can endeavor to deliver. If we try to expand too much or too fast, we run the risk of causing more harm than good. Our customers need to able to count on SRTA delivering our service into the future.
Describe your leadership in one word.