TTC CEO Rick Leary resigns

TTC CEO Rick Leary announced on Thursday that he is stepping down as the head of the transit agency. Meanwhile, TTC staff say the need for federal funding to replace Line 2 subway trains is growing more urgent.

TTC CEO Rick Leary has resigned from his position. His last day will be August 30.

In a statement, Leary said it was a difficult decision but he believes “there are some new opportunities and challenges that await me before I fully retire.”

Leary first stepped in as interim CEO in 2017 when then-CEO Andy Byford left to become president of the New York City Transit Authority. His appointment became permanent in 2018.

Prior to that, Leary was the TTC’s chief service officer since May 2014.

“What an incredible 10 years it has been. I would go as far as to say this has been the most rewarding experience in my four decades in public transit,” said Leary.

He called the recent agreement between the union that represents transit workers and the transit agency his “last major undertaking over the finish line.”

“I believed that it was my duty and obligation to ensure the new agreement was in place before I stepped down,” said Leary.

“If we had not reached that agreement, I needed to be here to steer the organization through a labour disruption.”

ATU Local 113 members ratified their agreement Monday night with more than 80 per cent of workers voting in favour of the new contract.

Leary also teased an announcement about increasing service at the beginning of September in his resignation.

He thanked TTC employees and all the boards and chairs he has worked with over the last decade along with Mayor Olivia Chow and former Mayor John Tory.

“I hope I am leaving the organization better-positioned to continue to succeed for years to come,” said Leary.

TTC chair and councillor Jamaal Myers said in a statement that Leary was committed to “providing reliable, safe service while ensuring high standards” during his tenure at the transit agency.

“As this chapter in Toronto’s story closes, we are grateful for Rick’s contributions to the TTC’s successes over the past decade. He established performance standards for service quality, vehicle reliability, cost control, and personnel,” Myers wrote in part.

“Rick has decided to pursue new opportunities, and I am sure he will share his plans with you at an appropriate time and forum. For now, we take this opportunity to acknowledge his many contributions to the great legacy of the TTC and wish him well in all of his future endeavours.”

Chow thanked Leary for his years of service in a statement. “Over the last decade, Rick has dedicated himself to the TTC, working tirelessly to keep it running and keep riders moving through some of the most challenging times.”

She added more details on the next steps for finding a new CEO will be shared by the TTC in the coming weeks.

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