MARTA CEO Dies by Suicide After Stepping in Front of Train

MARTA General Manager and CEO Jeffrey Parker died on Friday night from suicide after he stepped in front of an incoming train in the Atlanta area.

Photograph of Marta train in Atlanta

Image via Getty/SOPA Images

Photograph of Marta train in Atlanta

MARTA General Manager and CEO Jeffrey Parker passed away on Friday night at the age of 55, after stepping in front of an incoming train, the New York Post.

Parker oversaw the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, helping the public transportation system stay afloat as ridership plunged during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“He was an outstanding leader and steward of MARTA whose passing leaves us all heartbroken.” MARTA Chairwoman Rita Scott said in a statement. “We are devastated at this loss as we valued Jeff’s leadership and looked forward to him bringing his vision for transit to fruition. The entire metro Atlanta region owes him a debt of gratitude for his transformational efforts and we will not stop working to build on the foundation he created.”

Statement from MARTA Board of Directors Chairwoman Rita Scott on the passing of MARTA General Manager & CEO Jeffrey Parker.

— MARTA (@MARTAtransit) January 15, 2022

Georgia governer Brian Kemp also mourned over the loss, tweeting on Saturday, “In addition to a remarkable professional career in the public/private sectors, Jeffrey was known for his civic engagement and support for the advancement of his communities.” Kemp added, “He will be greatly missed.”

He had an incredible mind for transportation and logistics and a heart for people. He will be greatly missed.

Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends, and his many colleagues.

— Governor Brian P. Kemp (@GovKemp) January 15, 2022

Parker held his position for four years, where he led plans to develop MARTA in more counties. According to the agency’s website, Parker had worked in the transportation industry for over 35 years, previously serving as the Connecticut Department of Transportation commissioner and holding prominent roles while at the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority. In 2020, Parker was listed in Atlanta Magazine’s Most Powerful People of 2020 and Atlanta Business Chronicle’s Power 100: Most Influential Atlantans of 2020.

The agency hired Greenwood in 2019 to lead bus operations and he later saw a promotion to deputy general manager of operations in January 2021.

In a unanimous vote, the MARTA Board of Directors has named Collie Greenwood as interim General Manager and CEO of MARTA at a specially called board meeting on Saturday, January 15, 2022, held after the sudden death of Jeffrey Parker.

— MARTA (@MARTAtransit) January 15, 2022

MARTA announced on Saturday that Collie Greenwood would take over Parker’s position.  

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