Bob Riley closed the latest chapter of his professional career in student transportation with a letter to members of the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation. Riley announced he would retire in December but stay on as executive director until his replacement, Charlie Hood, can take over.
NASDPTS selected Hood after several interviews to find Riley's successor were conducted in February at the Transporting Students with Disabilities and Preschoolers National Conference in Nashville, Tenn.
Riley served more than seven years after originally intending to only serve five after succeeding the previous executive director, Charlie Gauthier, in 2006. Meanwhile, Hood officially retired at the end of June from the Florida Department of Education.
Riley expressed "sincere thanks" to all NASDPTS members for their support and friendship, especially the four NASDPTS presidents he worked with — Derek Graham of North Carolina, Hood, Mike Simmons of Arkansas and current President Max Christensen of Iowa — "for their leadership and guidance."
"I am confident that NASDPTS' position and influence within the school transportation community has increased and will continue to do so," he added.
Highlights of Riley's tenure included the "particularly rewarding the opportunity to build and maintain cooperative working relationships on behalf of NASDPTS with school transportation related federal agencies, school bus transportation associations, school bus manufacturers and industry suppliers," he wrote. He also served as a member of the American School Bus Council as a representative of NASDPTS and called that assignment ?personally and professionally satisfying to me."
Hood officially becomes the new NASPDTS executive director following this week's Southeastern States Pupil Transportation Conference held in Daytona Beach, Fla. He is representing NASDPTS next month at the STN EXPO in Reno, Nev., as a presenter on school bus stop-arm violations.