Recap: Emerging Leaders in Transportation 2022

Recap: Emerging Leaders in Transportation 2022


Day 1


The NYU Rudin Center for Transportation and C2SMART assembled 23 early-career transportation professionals for our eighth annual Emerging Leaders Program. The three-day program included insightful panels, passionate discussions, a behind-the-scenes tour of the MTA Coney Island Maintenance & Overhaul Shop, and a celebratory reception.


The first day of the program (October 19) began with introductions, followed by a panel of local transportation leaders currently working in a range of public, private, and nonprofit organizations:

The speakers discussed the importance of developing a network within the transportation industry and the skills needed to make change within a political landscape.


After lunch, Ben Kabak of Second Avenue Sagas shared his thoughts on the current state and future outlook of New York City transit, as well as what he has learned in his years of writing about transit issues online.



Lastly, leaders participated in an ideation session to begin thinking about their own ideas for transportation improvements.



Day 2


The second day of the program featured a tour of the MTA Coney Island Maintenance & Overhaul Shop in Brooklyn. At the overhaul shop, Emerging Leaders visited different departments to learn about various stages of scheduled maintenance. They also visited the 24-hour maintenance shop, the vast outdoor storage yards, and a motor repair shop. The group even caught a glimpse of the new R211 train cars.


Day 3


The third and final day of the program began with a keynote from Ya-Ting Liu, Chief Strategy Officer for the Deputy Mayor for Operations in the NYC Office of the Mayor. She shared her experiences of moving from an advocacy role to a public sector position and of trying to help city agencies work together.



Participants then developed and shared Innovation Action Plans for bringing their transportation ideas to fruition.



In the afternoon, Emerging Leaders gained insight from a panel on the Future of Transportation in NYC with three industry leaders:



Panelists discussed issues such as accessibility, community engagement, and making an impact under challenging conditions.



As the day came to a close, Emerging Leaders presented their Innovation Action Plans to their peers in the form of elevator pitches. Participants gave feedback and signed on to each other’s plans.


In the evening, a networking reception at Vineapple capped off the day’s activities and marked the end of this year’s Emerging Leaders Program.


The Rudin Center would like to give a special thanks to the MTA for the tour, and to the speakers and panelists who helped to make this program educational, engaging, and productive. 


Emerging Leaders in Transportation is directed and moderated by Sarah M. Kaufman, NYU Rudin Center Interim Executive Director, and supported by NYU C2SMART. Applications to join the 2023 Emerging Leaders in Transportation cohort will open in summer 2023.