October 13, 2009
The Capital Metro board on Monday named Doug Allen to lead the transit agency on an interim basis during the search for a permanent general manager.
Allen, Capital Metro’s executive vice president and chief development officer, will become the acting president and chief executive officer/general manager after Fred Gilliam’s retirement at the end of the week. Allen’s temporary promotion includes a salary increase of almost 21 percent, to $227,667 from his current salary of $188,475.
Allen, 55, joined Capital Metro in April 2008 after 24 years at Dallas Area Rapid Transit, where he was executive vice president for program development.
“My job is to keep the ball rolling,” Allen said, while the agency board looks for a permanent leader, a search that one board member said is likely to take six to nine months once it begins in earnest early next year.
Allen declined to say if he would be a candidate.
The Capital Metro board itself is about to change, going from seven members to eight at the end of the year, with several changes likely among the current members. Board member Mike Martinez, an Austin City Council member, said the current board will put together a job description for the president position and then leave it up to the new board to conduct what he anticipates will be a national search.
Martinez said he would seek one of the two City of Austin appointments on the new version of the board and said Capital Metro needs a president who is “a dynamic leader, someone who understands how to get out into the community and generate confidence and trust.”
The effort to upgrade the entity that will hire Gilliam’s replacement — the Capital Metro board of directors — is nearing a milestone. The Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization board, which will name three new members to the transit board by the end of the year, will cease accepting applications Wednesday afternoon.
The Legislature and Gov. Rick Perry earlier this year approved a bill by state Sen. Kirk Watson, D-Austin, expanding the board and requiring that two of the members have at least a decade of either financial or executive experience.
The CAMPO board, chaired by Watson, will appoint those two members — the current board already has two CAMPO appointees, John Trevino and Mike Manor, who were named before the experience requirements became law — as well as a third director who must be an elected official.
Manor, who works for Travis County, has indicated interest in staying on the board, but it’s not clear that he would meet either the financial or executive requirement.
Trevino, who has health problems and has missed several recent Capital Metro board meetings, including Monday’s, said this summer that his 12-year tenure on the board is likely nearing its end.