Intelligent Transport Podcast Episode 24 – Katherine Conrad, NEORide
In this latest episode of the Intelligent Transport Podcast, Editorial Assistant Halimah Haque sits down with Katherine Conrad, CEO of NEORide, to discuss the pioneering EZfare system and NEORide’s relentless commitment to improving accessibility and making transit services more convenient and equitable for all passengers in the region.
Beginning the conversation for this episode, Katherine Conrad, CEO of NEORide and Intelligent Transport Advisory Board member, shares her insight into the development and implementation of EZfare, as well as the challenges that come with serving a region as diverse as the one that the organisation operates in, spanning seven states. Katherine also highlights how EZfare has brought about a revolutionary change in public transportation within the NEORide region by simplifying ticketing processes and enabling passengers to pay for services through mobile ticketing.
Then, we delve into the importance of collaborating with multiple transit agencies to acquire state and federal funding, highlighting the synergies and collective efforts required to secure the necessary financial resources for enhancing public transportation services in the region. Following this, Katherine discusses how her background in government and lobbying efforts has influenced her work in the transport sector, particularly in advocating for funding and policy changes.
In the second half of this episode, we shift our attention towards NEORide’s dedicated efforts in promoting equity within the realm of public transportation by making substantial strides in addressing disparities and ensuring fair access to transit services. In addition, Katherine explores NEORide’s forward-looking perspective, delving into its ambitious vision for the future of regional transit, which not only encompasses technological advancements but also a profound commitment to making transportation accessible and inclusive for all members of the community.
As the Director for NEORide, Katherine Conrad oversees the day-to-day needs of 25 transit members across Ohio, Kentucky, Arkansas, West Virginia and Michigan, including executing special projects, grants and marketing. In 2019, she spearheaded the effort to launch EZfare, the largest multi-county mobile ticketing system in the country. Her focus is on expanding regional transportation and coordinated services. Katherine has been able to obtain over $9 million in state and federal funding for NEORide agencies to make this work possible. In 2021, under her leadership, NEORide was awarded Best Smart Ticketing App by Transport Ticketing, a global recognition.