Feb. 2, 2022 – New Durham Mayor Elaine M. O’Neal joined the GoTriangle Board of Trustees this week, succeeding Durham Council Member Charlie Reece as the City of Durham’s representative to the board.GoTriangle’s Board of Trustees has 13 seats. The region’s principal municipalities and counties appoint 10 voting members to staggered four-year terms, and the North Carolina Secretary of Transportation appoints three ex-officio nonvoting members. One of the NCDOT seats currently is unfilled.
“We are pleased to have Mayor O’Neal join the GoTriangle Board of Trustees as we all work together on creating a unified regional transit network that helps us maintain the quality of life we enjoy in the Triangle,” says Sig Hutchinson, a Wake County commissioner and chairman of the GoTriangle Board of Trustees. “It’s an exciting time to be working on transformative transit projects like the Greater Triangle Commuter Rail Project while also expanding bus service, and Mayor O’Neal will be an important voice on our board.”
O’Neal, elected in November, is a native of Durham and received a bachelor’s and a law degree from N.C. Central University.
“I know all of us at GoTriangle are looking forward to working with Mayor O’Neal and enjoying the benefits of her knowledge and extensive public service background,” says Charles E. Lattuca, CEO and president of GoTriangle. “She also knows the ins and outs of Durham, and her insights will be incredibly valuable as we continue into the next phases of building the transit network our growing community needs.”
O'Neal was a District Court judge for 17 years and was elected in 2011 as the first female Superior Court judge in Durham County. In 2018, she retired from the bench to become the interim dean of the NCCU School of Law.
“I’m honored to join the board of GoTriangle,” O’Neal says. “Creating an equitable transportation system that is convenient to use and accessible to all riders – connecting them to the jobs, health care, educational opportunities and goods and services they need to thrive – is a top priority of mine.”
O’Neal ran for mayor on a platform that included a focus on transit, promising to:
- Seek public-private partnerships to supplement transit options and improve access by engaging with ride-share companies to leverage existing community assets like religious organization vehicles to form a community-based expansion of transit services.
- Ensure residents receive training and transit to reach the new jobs coming to Durham.
- Prioritize and allocate funds to ensure safe streets, sidewalks, bus stops and bus shelters that are also ADA compliant.
GoTriangle is the regional transit provider in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area, improving the area’s quality of life by connecting people and places through safe, reliable and easy-to-use travel choices. The agency provided more than 1.2 million trips on fixed-route bus service and 28,000 paratransit trips in fiscal year 2021. GoTriangle also provides transit planning, project management and capital development services and serves as the transit-tax administrator for Wake, Durham and Orange counties.