Harford Administrator Named 2021 Transportation Manager of the Year

Harford County Administrator Gary Blazinsky has recently been named 2021 Transportation Manager of the Year.

Image provided by Harford County. Pictured from left:
Harford County Director of Community & Economic Development Len Parrish; Gary Blazinsky; County Executive

Gary Blazinsky, Administrator of Harford Transit LINK, has recently been named the 2021 Community Transportation Manager of the Year by the Community Transportation Association of America (CTAA) at its annual EXPO. Blazinsky received this honor in recognition of his innovative leadership at LINK throughout the pandemic.

The award, presented annually at the Association’s national EXPO, recognizes excellence by managers of community transportation systems in serving the needs of people in their communities. When presenting the award, Randy Zobrist, Midwest Regional Director of the Association’s Board of Directors, noted how Blazinsky had gone above and beyond to improve his community and its mobility.

According to the Press Release:

Pre-pandemic, Blazinsky was able to increase ridership by 22 percent due to his vision and tireless efforts to improve on-time performance and his system’s existing route structure. Additionally, thanks to Blazinsky’s leadership, this agency has increased access to work, school, shopping and more; truly enhancing the lives of its riders by connecting them to life’s most important opportunities. His forward-thinking approach has improved ridership satisfaction, led to the smart use of alternative fuels, and helped his system implement innovative transit technology by modifying existing services to remain flexible throughout the pandemic.

Not only is this winner dedicated to his communities, but also to its employees. He recognized that a reliable workforce is key in providing quality service to riders. Blazinsky encourages ongoing professional growth and works with the local government to increase wages and provide greater benefit packages,” said Zobrist in presenting the award.

Upon receiving the award Blazinsky said:

“I am extremely privileged to receive this award. To be recognized by my peers and transit associates is one of the most significant accomplishments of my professional career. However, it is due to the hard work, support and diligence of the Harford Transit LINK team, so while I’m the one receiving the award, this is really their achievement as everything we work to accomplish, we do as a team,”

Blazinsky’s work underlines the importance of a robust public transportation system is to a community. In all of Maryland’s 24 counties, leaders are striving to provide an adequate transportation infrastructure. One of the biggest challenges for transit is the cut to highway user revenues (HUR) during the 2008-2009 financial crisis. As previously covered by Conduit Street, HUR was cut by nearly 87% and was only partially restored for FYs 2020-2024, but we will soon be facing a cliff. MACo has made restoring HUR a legislative initiative for the 2022 session.

HUR and innovations around public transit will be a topic at MACo’s Winter Conference. In “Go Big: Infrastructure Funding at a Crossroads,” an expert panel will discuss infrastructure funding, challenges, and opportunities impacting local governments. 

The 2021 MACo Winter Conference, “Time to Reboot: Tomorrow’s Tech Today,” will be held on December 8-10, 2021, at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Hotel in Cambridge, Maryland.

Learn more about MACo’s Winter Conference: