High-Speed Rail CEO announces he is stepping down

High-Speed Rail CEO announces he is stepping down (Photo High-Speed Rail Authority)

After five years of service, Jeff Morales, Chief Executive Officer of the California High-Speed Rail program, announced on Friday he is stepping down.

Morales is expected to remain until the board finds his replacement early this summer.

"It has been a true honor to be a part of this important and historic program. I am very proud of the progress we have made in advancing the nation's first high-speed rail system, against the odds and in spite of all the obstacles," said Morales in a letter to Governor Jerry Brown and the California High-Speed Rail Authority. "We have 119 miles of construction underway through three major design-build contracts. To date, the project has supported thousands of jobs, put almost a thousand tradesmen and women to work, and injected upwards of $4 billion into California's economy."

Morales was named CEO in May of 2012 and is expected to work with the board to ensure a smooth transition to his replacement before his official departure on June 2nd.

Dan Richard, Chairman of the High-Speed Rail Authority Board of Directors said, "Jeff has successfully built the organization over the past five years and we're grateful for his leadership. He moved the High-Speed Rail project from the planning phase into construction, laying the groundwork for commercial operation."

Morales previously worked as the Executive Vice President for the Chicago Transit Authority and Director of the California Department of Transportation.

He also served as a member of President-Elect Obama's transition team focusing on transportation, as well as Vice President Al Gore's National Performance Review, the White House Commission on Aviation Safety and Security of the U.S. Department of Transportation and as U.S. Senate staff.

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