NARP Names Betsy Nelson as Director of Resource Development
August 24, 2016
For Immediate Release (#16-20)
Contact: Robert Brady – (202) 680-4951
Nelson to Open Communications Between NARP and Partners for ‘A Connected America’
Washington, D.C. – The National Association of Railroad Passengers (NARP) announced the hiring of Betsy Nelson as its new Director of Resource Development. Nelson has a master’s degree in Civil Engineering and Transportation Policy, and will help NARP communicate to partners, transit agencies, elected officials, and other organizations on the importance of establishing rail and intermodal transportation for sustainable economic and population growth.
“Betsy has a true and unmistakable passion for a balanced transportation system in the U.S.—one that provides people with transportation choice,” said NARP President and CEO Jim Mathews. “NARP is happy to have Betsy join our team, and look forward to her help in our work to build ‘A Connected America.’”
Nelson first experienced the benefits of passenger rail after she moved to Biloxi, MS in 2010 and attended Amtrak’s 40th Anniversary Celebration in Meridian in 2011. While at Meridian’s Union Station, it occurred to Nelson that rail infrastructure is a catalyst that drives the economy and creates jobs throughout the country. This led Nelson to pursue a Master of Engineering from Texas A&M University, specializing in the equilibrium needed between planning, policy, and engineering for passenger rail.
“Rail transportation is all positive – it’s green, it’s fast, it’s easy, you can ‘plug-in’ while someone else drives, it’s efficient,” said Nelson. “I’m very passionate about rail and intermodal transportation and I’m excited to bring my knowledge and experience to NARP.”
In Nelson’s new role as Director of Resource Development, she will work to keep the lines of communication open between NARP, its members and partners in the rail industry—including suppliers, transit agencies and transportation officials—to promote passenger rail as part of a sustainable, connected America. It will be Nelson’s job to communicate how membership dues, donations, and sponsorships are making a difference. She will also help NARP represent passenger needs on Capitol Hill and beyond.
Prior to her time with NARP, Nelson spent time as a project manager and computer programmer with Western Geophysical, a legal assistant with the IRS, a travel agent with SATO and McDonnell Douglas, and a realtor in San Antonio, TX. Nelson is also married to Col. (Dr.) Paul Nelson, USAF and together they have two children.
About the National Association of Railroad Passengers
NARP is the only national organization speaking for the nearly 40 million users of passenger trains and rail transit. We have worked since 1967 to expand the quality and quantity of passenger rail in the U.S. Our mission is to work towards a modern, customer-focused national passenger train network that provides a travel choice Americans want. Our work is supported by more than 28,000 individual members nationwide.
"When [NARP] comes to Washington, you help embolden us in our efforts to continue the progress for passenger rail. And not just on the Northeast Corridor. All over America! High-speed rail, passenger rail is coming to America, thanks to a lot of your efforts! We’re partners in this. ... You are the ones that are going to make this happen. Do not be dissuaded by the naysayers. There are thousands of people all over America who are for passenger rail and you represent the best of what America is about!"
Secretary Ray LaHood, U.S. Department of Transportation
2012 NARP Spring Council Meeting