WASHINGTON – Ronald L. Batory was sworn in this morning by U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao as the 14th Administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA). A railroad industry professional with more than 45 years of experience, Mr. Batory is widely respected, having worked successfully for small and large rail carriers across the U.S. Prior to his nomination to serve as Administrator, Batory was President & Chief Operating Officer of Conrail, the eighth largest freight railroad in America from 2004 until his retirement in April 2017.
Ron Batory brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Federal Railroad Administration during a critical time for rail and passenger safety,” said Secretary Elaine L. Chao. “His 45- year career in the operation and maintenance of railroads will be of great value in helping to implement new safety technology and improve compliance with safety alerts.”
“Railroads are an integral part of America’s transportation system and vital to our national economy,” said Batory. “In addressing the challenges and opportunities ahead, my goal is to use data-driven decision making to further enhance safety while embracing leveraging innovative new technologies that will revolutionize America’s rail transportation network.”
As Administrator, Batory is responsible for managing the agency’s regulatory oversight of more than 800 railroads, including enforcement of safety laws and regulations. He will provide leadership and direction for FRA-administered financial assistance programs, national freight and passenger rail policy, as well as research and development activities that support improved railroad safety, efficiency, and reliability.
After earning his Bachelor of Arts degree from Adrian College in Michigan, Batory began his railroad career in 1971 working for the Detroit, Toledo and Ironton Railroad. He received a Master of Arts degree from Eastern Michigan University in 1975, and then served in positions of progressively greater responsibility with the Grand Trunk Western Railroad, the Chicago, Missouri and Western Railway, and the Southern Pacific Transportation Company. In 1994, Batory became President of The Belt Railway Company of Chicago (BRC), the largest intermediate switching terminal in the U.S. In 1998, he was recruited by CSX and Norfolk Southern Railway to manage the partitioning of Consolidated Rail Corporation (Conrail) as part of a merger approved by the U.S. Surface Transportation Board.