Pierce Transit CEO announces retirement

Don Monroe, chief executive officer of Pierce Transit, announced in a special meeting with his Board of Commissioners his intention to retire by year’s end.

Monroe, 68, has been a transit executive for over 30 years and indicated the timing was right to begin the process of finding his successor.

The board agreed to a national search to fill the position. The selection process, including transition time with Monroe and the new CEO should be concluded by the end of this year.

“Pierce Transit is in a secure, stable position now with a good financial foundation, professional staff, and dedicated workforce,” Monroe told the board. “At the same time, Pierce Transit’s future capital and service plans are ambitious and require long-term continuity of leadership.”

Monroe has served as Pierce Transit’s CEO since 1981 and has shaped the course of the agency almost from its inception. He was responsible for building multiple transit centers, including the Tacoma Dome Station, the first multi-modal transit facility in the Northwest.

During his tenure, Pierce Transit has emerged as an innovative leader in the transit industry, becoming one of the nation’s first transit agencies to use natural-gas powered buses.

Pierce Transit is the second largest public transit system in the State of Washington, operating a fleet of 242 buses that provide more than 13 million rides per year.

“During Don Monroe’s tenure, Pierce Transit has been elevated to a position of one of the most well respected transit agencies in the nation,” stated Kevin Phelps, chairman of the Pierce Transit Board of Commissioners. “We wish him well as he plans for his much deserved retirement; he will be missed.”

Pierce Transit has earned numerous local and national awards under Monroe’s leadership, including the transit industry’s highest honor, the American Public Transit Association’s “Outstanding Achievement Award” for efficiency and effectiveness. Monroe’s commitment to excellence is repeatedly reflected in the transit services provided Pierce County residents.

This dedication to his profession has earned him the respect of his peers and vital appointments on regional and national transportation committees.