DART begins national search for new CEO

DART begins national search for new CEO

The Des Moines Area Regional Transit Authority has started its search for a new CEO following Elizabeth Presutti’s departure earlier this year.

Presutti announced in November she would be stepping down as DART’s CEO, and in December DART announced it had hired Sheri Kyras as interim CEO. Presutti served with DART for 14 years, 11 of them as CEO.

Officials with DART said Friday that they have begun a nationwide search for a new CEO, and have hired executive recruiting agency Krauthamer & Associates LLC to assist in the search.

DART is also offering a survey to allow people to give their input on what qualities and qualifications they would like in a new CEO.

DART serves 11 cities in Polk and Dallas counties, along with some areas in unincorporated Polk County. It operates 139 fixed-route, on-call and paratransit vehicles that provide nearly 3 million trips each year. The agency also operates a vanpool program in 22 counties.

DART is governed by a 12-member commission, with each member representing a community DART serves.

Russ Trimble, DART commission chair and mayor of West Des Moines, said a new CEO will help lead the agency’s strategic plan, which includes “innovative new transit services, continued modernization of DART’s fleet and facilities, sustainability advances and exploration for strategic funding diversification.”

“The CEO will have the opportunity to lead significant change for the future of our region’s transit system, positively impacting the people DART serves for years to come,” he said in a news release.

Kyras worked for DART and its predecessor organization, the MTA, for 21 years before she left to join CyRide in Ames in 2006. Kryas retired from CyRide in 2019.

“The ideal candidate [for the new DART CEO] will be regionally minded and highly collaborative, advocating for public transit’s vital role in the central Iowa community to ensure equitable, accessible and affordable transportation options for residents and visitors,” she said in the release.