July 5, 2022

Estuary Transit District Director Receives National Recognition

Estuary Transit District Executive Director Joseph Comerford

Mass Transit, the only magazine exclusively dedicated to public transportation, has named Estuary Transit District (ETD) Executive Director Joseph Comerford to its second annual Mass Transit Top 40 Under 40 list.

The list honors professionals throughout the U.S. and Canada under the age of forty who have made significant contributions to the public transit industry.  Honorees were nominated by their peers and judged on criteria that included job commitment, industry involvement and contribution, achievement in his or her position and innovation in his or her field.

“We received so many qualified nominations we could easily have extended the list,” says Mass Transit Editor Fred Jandt.  “It was challenging to narrow it down, but we are confident that this exclusive Mass Transit Top 40 Under 40 list is made up of professionals who are not only extremely deserving of this honor, we expect they will continue to play a significant role in public transport for decades to come.”

Comerford was recognized for his many accomplishments in his 13 years in the transit industry.  He began his transit career at UConn Transportation, while he earned a bachelors degree from the University of Connecticut. Shortly after graduation he was hired by First Transit and served five years as the General Manager of the Monroe Transit System in Monroe, LA, where the system received FTA’s Annual Award for Enhancing Ridership for increasing ridership by 75 percent under his leadership, amongst many other achievements that made the system a statewide model by the time of his departure. 

In 2008, Comerford returned to Connecticut with First Transit as executive director for the Estuary Transit District. Since that time, ETD has developed a comprehensive operations policy, launched new services to Middletown and New London, expanded service hours on Dial-A-Ride services, been awarded almost $900,000 of economic stimulus funds, ordered the states first hybrid electric-gasoline buses, and grown ridership 18 percent over the previous year.

“I have been extremely fortunate to work for outstanding leaders, both at First Transit and at the transit systems for which I have served, who have provided me the tools to be successful,” Comerford says.  “But I also must thank my current and former employees, because they are the ones that take my initiatives and make them successes.”

The cover feature will appear in the September/October issue of Mass Transit magazine and online at www.masstransitmag.com.

The Estuary Transit District provides public transit service via the fleet of 13 buses to Chester, Clinton, Deep River, Essex, Killingworth, Lyme, Old Lyme, Old Saybrook and Westbrook through its 9 Town Transit service.  Connections are provided to New Haven, Middletown, Hartford and New London/Norwich bus services as well as Shoreline East Commuter Rail.  All services are open to the general public with no age or disability restrictions.

Additional information, route maps and schedules are available online at www.9towntransit.com or by calling 9 Town Transit at 860-510-0429.