WRI to welcome Batory as keynote speaker in New Orleans

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Ron Batory, Federal Railroad Administrator
U.S. Department of Transportation
NEW ORLEANS — Wheel Rail Interaction conference attendees will hear from one of railroading's heavy hitters in June.

Organizers for the annual rail engineering conference confirm that Federal Railroad Administration Administrator Ron Batory will be the keynote speaker on June 20.

"We’re excited that Mr. Batory sees fit to make the keynote address at WRI this year. I’m sure that WRI delegates will be eager to hear it. While we can’t say what Mr. Batory will cover in his remarks, we clearly share common interests," says Bob Tuzik, Wheel Rail Interaction's executive program director. "Much of what we cover at the wheel/rail seminars, such as rail flaw detection, automated inspection systems, the move toward performance-based track inspection, and derailment prevention, is of interest to the FRA. We’re looking forward to getting the FRA Administrator’s perspective on what’s important and what may be in store on collaborative and regulatory fronts in areas where the FRA and industry come together."

Batory is a career professional with more than 45 years of field and system experience in the railroad industry. He spent the first 23 years of his career working for both eastern and western Class I railroads in addition to serving along with a court appointed Trustee's successful oversight of a regional railroad bankruptcy.

In 1994, he was appointed President of The Belt Railway Co. of Chicago, a multiple owned subsidiary of then nine competing Class I carriers. His leadership success of serving their needs in Chicago Gateway led to CSX Transportation and Norfolk Southern later recruiting him to Consolidated Rail Corp. in preparation of their Surface Transportation Board-approved partitioning of that eastern carrier and establishing what is now commonly known as Conrail Shared Assets. Accomplishment of that unique task in providing a plane of equality for joint competition later favored him in being appointed to his last position of president and chief operating officer for the entire corporate entity.

Upon his retirement in 2017 he pursued public service in Washington, which resulted in a Presidential nomination and unanimous consent by the U.S. Senate to become the 14th FRA administrator.

Batory is a graduate of Adrian College, Adrian, Mich., with a B.A. degree along with an M.A. degree from Eastern Michigan University. He has served on various governing boards associated within the sectors of both industry and education.

Trains is the presenting sponsor of Wheel Rail Interaction, which celebrates it's 25th anniversary this year. The conference will be held June 18 to 21 at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside hotel in downtown New Orleans.

More information is available online. 

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