RTD Finalizes Contract With Its New Interim Leader

Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite
The RTD bus lane on 15th Street downtown. Nov. 5, 2019.

The former president and CEO of Fort Worth's transit system has officially signed on to be RTD’s next leader, after the agency’s board voted 10 to 5 Tuesday night to approve his contract. 

Paul Ballard starts his new job by Feb. 26, and he will earn an annual salary of $350,000. He’ll serve on an interim basis as RTD searches for a permanent CEO.

Courtesy RTD
Paul Ballard will be RTD's next general manager and CEO, on an interim basis.

Ballard retired from Trinity Metro in 2019, where he oversaw the construction of a 27-mile commuter rail line between Fort Worth and the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport.

RTD’s board voted last month to hire Ballard, who was one of five finalists. He told CPR News that he looked forward to helping RTD tackle some of its most pressing issues. 

"I think the agency can’t bury its head in the sand and say we’ll wait for the permanent person to come in," Ballard said. "There are a lot of decisions that have to be made now."

That includes dealing with driver shortages, examining RTD's finances, and the opening of the N Line later this year, he added.

Now, the RTD board will turn in earnest to a larger task: Hiring a permanent leader. Ballard has said that he does not want the job permanently.