Transportation Industry Leaders Join University of Denver Board

DENVER—The Intermodal Transportation Institute (ITI) at the University of Denver welcomes five new Board members, all influential leaders in the transportation industry, effective October 2014.

The ITI Board serves as a guide for the Institutes’ educational programs, provides leadership and strategic direction to the ITI, and shares expertise and resources to the academic and outreach endeavors of the program. Board members serve a three-year term and contribute to the success of the ITI through guidance, participation in educational content, and financial and other support to the academic program. Board members often sponsor employees from their own organizations to attend the executive master’s degree program offered at the University of Denver’s ITI.
“The diversity and experience of these new members to the ITI Board enhance an already strong framework for the academic programs that ITI has and will be offering to the industry,” said William J. DeWitt III, the Executive Director of the ITI. “The depth and breadth of experience of all of the ITI Board Members is a great asset to the ITI and represents a unique opportunity for a 360 degree view of the most important issues facing our industry to be considered.”

The five newly named ITI Board members all have impressive leadership experience in the transportation industry and will make a substantial contribution to the Board and to the ITI program.

New ITI Board members include:

Bradley Thomas is the president of FirstGroup America’s division First Transit and First Services. In his role, Thomas is responsible for more than 15,000 employees across North America and his team operates, manages, and maintains nearly 12,000 transit vehicles and provides fleet maintenance services for more than 38,000 public and private sector vehicles. With more than 20 years of experience in the transit industry, Thomas specializes in fixed-route, paratransit, and university transportation systems.

Cynthia Ott was appointed Vice President of Human Resources in 2012 for Maersk Line in North America, one of the largest shipping companies providing container ships and bulk carriers around the world. Ott focuses on talent development and the standardization and global alignment of HR throughout Maersk Line in North America.

Terry A. Ruhl, president of the transportation market at CH2M HILL, leads the aviation, bridge, highway, ports and maritime, and transit and rail market segments. With more than 26 years of experience, Ruhl is tasked with the growth and profitability of the transportation segments at CH2M HILL, a leader in the planning, design, and construction of transportation infrastructure.

Dean Wise serves as Vice President of Network Strategy, where he oversees BNSF Railway’s strategy process, network franchise development, shortline business development, public-private partnerships, interline and haulage management, and non-rail uses of the BNSF right-of-way. Prior to his role at Network Strategy, Wise was a partner at Norbridge, Inc., a management consultant firm focusing on the freight transport and logistics industry.

Mary Ellen Russell is the Chief Human Resource Officer at Genesee & Wyoming Inc., owner of shortline and regional freight railroads with subsidiaries providing rail service in 37 ports around the world. Russell joined G&W as Vice President of Talent Management in October 2012.

“The ITI Board brings senior leaders from diverse sectors of the global transportation industry together to have a positive influence on our industry, and to support the ITI master’s program in its goal of training the future senior leaders in global transportation and logistics,” said Adriene Bailey, ITI Board Chair, and Vice President of Strategic Business Development for Yusen Logistics (Americas) Inc. – Transportation Division. “We are extremely pleased to have Bradley, Cynthia, Terry, Dean, and Mary Ellen joining the ITI Board, and we look forward to the contributions that each will make.”

The Intermodal Transportation Institute (ITI) at the University of Denver offers an executive master’s program that awards a Master of Science in Intermodal Transportation Management from the University of Denver. This graduate degree program prepares transportation industry managers for the increasingly complex, global business environment where knowledge of finance, quantitative processes, supply chain, transportation law, and public policy issues as well as freight, passenger, and intermodal transportation operational strategies are critical management tools for success. For more information on the ITI master’s program visit To reach a Board member, please contact 303-871-7449.

Founded in 1864, the University of Denver is committed to improving the human condition and engaging students and faculty in tackling the major issues of our day. In 2014, the University of Denver will celebrate its sesquicentennial with a full calendar of events and programs that not only honor the institution’s 150-year commitment to serving students, the community and the public good, but that look forward to a future of continued achievement and innovation. The University of Denver ranks among the top 100 national universities in the U.S.

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