NCSU transit researcher named NCDOT public transportation chief

Posted by Bruce Siceloff on January 16, 2014 

— Debra G. Collins, a 20-year veteran of transit research and administration at N.C. State University, has been named director of the state Department of Transportation’s Public Transportation Division.

Collins has worked since 1994 at NCSU’s Institute for Transportation Research and Education as co-director of the Public Transportation Group. She will take charge of DOT programs that support intercity bus service and urban and rural public transportation.

“Debra is a seasoned professional with a deep knowledge of public transportation,” Richard Walls, DOT deputy secretary for transit, said in a news release. “Her experience and expertise will not only be of great benefit to the division, but also to the public transportation systems serving all 100 counties of North Carolina.”

Collins has a master’s in civil engineering from the University of Virginia. She starts work Feb. 1 at a salary of $98,446 a year. She lives with her family in Salisbury. She’ll work in Raleigh, and Walls said he believes she plans to get an apartment here.

Collins succeeds Teresa Hart, who headed the public transportation division for several months before returning to her former job in DOT’s Project Development and Environmental Analysis office.

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