The Northeastern Ontario Passenger Rail Summit’s keynote guest speakers will be Bruce Budd, President of Transport Action Canada; Ken Bitten, a 40-year career railroader and entrepreneur, and Sylvan Gervais, Bombardier’s Director of Operations and Maintenance for Canada. Our special guest speaker will be Corina Moore, President and CEO Ontario Northland Transportation Corporation.
Bruce Budd, President of Transport Action Canada – our nation’s leading citizen transportation advocacy group. From TAC website “Canada is the only G7 nation that has not seen significant capital funding in intercity passenger rail in a generation”.
Ken Bitten – his career in railroad management of almost 40 years includes class one, short line and vast passenger experience. He has made a career of the procurement, movement, upgrading, operation, maintenance and disposition of railroad passenger cars. His acquisition and management of two separate fleets of more than two hundred passenger cars each confirm that his logistics and mechanical background are extensive. Ken also is adept at project management including development, costing, component acquisition, rebuild procedures, training and performance monitoring. Ken has been the general manager of seven railroads, two of which he founded. He also has a strong background in operations, maintenance of way, marketing and finance, and has significant background in railroad insurance.
Sylvan Gervais, Bombardier’s Director of Operations and Maintenance for Canada. With a bachelor degree in Operational Research, Sylvain began his career in the railroad industry as a supervisor with Via Rail Canada.
“Bombardier Transportation moves 500 million persons every day in 70 countries. We are a global leader in rail technology. As an innovation driver, Bombardier Transportation continuously breaks new ground in sustainable mobility and we would be pleased to be part of the solution for the mobility of the Northern of Ontario citizens”.
Corina Moore, President and CEO of Ontario Northland will be our special guest speaker. Her topic – the story of Ontario Northland’s recent transformation into an efficient and valued leader in transportation and how the company provides vital transportation solutions to northern Ontario, including passenger rail and freight service between Cochrane and Moosonee, freight services across Northeastern Ontario, and a recently expanded bus network.
Throughout the day, attendees will hear from another 17 individuals well qualified to speak on the Social and Economic Impacts of Transportation in Northeastern Ontario.
While Northern Ontario faces the challenges created by our current economic times, NEORN is promoting a sustainable approach to supporting economic opportunity in the north. Innovative, integrative and accessible passenger rail service offers solutions to many of the challenges that are affecting the north’s economic diversity, development and accessibility.
It is vital to the sustainability of our northern regions of Ontario that passenger rail services be supported, refurbished and reinstated otherwise we will become increasingly isolated economically and socially – something our northern regions and Ontario cannot afford.
The NorthEastern Ontario Passenger Rail Summit will take place April 19th in Sault Ste Marie at the Quattro Hotel. Passenger Rail Summit is open to all interested participants, cost is $15 per person to cover lunch. The NorthEastern Ontario Passenger Rail Summit will be a full day forum to discuss NEORN’s proposed NorthEastern Ontario Rail Loop.