Metro Chief Communications Officer (CCO) Pauletta Tonilas has announced that she has accepted the position of Assistant General Manager, Communications, at the Regional Transportation District (RTD) in Denver. Metro CEO Phil Washington will name an interim CCO and said that a national search for Pauletta’s replacement will soon commence.
Pauletta was a Senior Manager, Public Relations & Public Information at the RTD before joining Metro in 2015 and will now return to RTD in an elevated role. Among Pauletta’s contributions at Metro were leading and implementing the successful Measure M Public Education Program that contributed to the 71 percent voter approval of the sales tax measure, seeking Board approval of a new advertising contract that will bring digital information displays to rail stations, building a bench of qualified consultants to help with Metro’s communication efforts and leading the effort to establish a new naming convention for Metro’s rail and bus rapid transit lines.
Phil has made it a point of emphasis at Metro to attract people to careers in the transportation industry and grow leaders through professional development. He also wants Los Angeles to be a “Transportation Center of Excellence” with a workforce that serves as the farm team for the entire transportation industry.
In that vein, former Metro Deputy CEO Stephanie Wiggins was named CEO of Metrolink in December. Phil subsequently announced that Nadine Lee, the agency’s Deputy Chief Innovation Officer, would serve as the agency’s interim Chief of Staff, a new position. Phil is proud of the promotions of both Stephanie and Pauletta and considers them graduates of the “LA Metro Leadership University.”