ONE-ON-ONE WITH MARTA’S JEFFREY PARKER
The Agency’s New General Manager and CEO Chats about Addressing Challenges, Implementing Changes and Establishing Clarity
By Lori Johnston
Jeffrey A. Parker admits he’s a creature of habit; he exercises every morning, then heads to the North Springs MARTA station to commute to MARTA headquarters.
But many things have changed since he previously worked for MARTA as Senior Director of Transportation Operations from 2005-2008. After stints as Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Transportation (2008-2011) and Vice President of the Georgia/Alabama/Tennessee District of HNTB Corportation (2011-2018), he was hired in March as MARTA’s General Manager and CEO.
The state’s historic mass transit legislation – House Bill 930 – passed the General Assembly just a week after he was named Keith Parker’s successor for the head MARTA role. “MARTA doesn’t go away,” Parker says of the mass transit bills’ passage. And, the agency faces significant projects with the recent passage of sales tax referendums in the city of Atlanta and Clayton County that will also boost expansion.
On the personal side, Parker and his wife will become empty nesters this fall when their youngest daughter goes off to college.
But Parker is embracing the changes. His major goals for MARTA center around continued fiscal stability, expansion and an investment in improving what the transit system delivers to customers. He took some time with Engineering Georgia to discuss his new role, the system’s challenges and how his experiences prepared him for today.