Each Year Mass Transit Magazine selects it Top 40 Under 40 for outstanding leaders in public transportation that are shaping the industry’s future. This year Melissa Fesler is among the list.
Fesler is the transportation director of First Capital Trolley (FCT), in Guthrie, and according to the magazine directs the most visible transit system in Oklahoma. Fesler has been the FCT transportation director since 1999, taking the reins at age 23.
“It was an honor to just have been nominated by my peers, but to have actually won was great,” Fesler told Guthrie News Page.
In 2008, under Fesler’s direction, First Capital Trolley added job routes to Langston, Edmond and Stillwater and moved into a new headquarters near the Guthrie-Edmond Regional Airport making the area an intermodal hub. FCT expanded the Guthrie-to-Stillwater route to include an Edmond stop.
Also in 2008, FCT was named ‘Business of the Year’ by the Guthrie Chamber of Commerce. This award recognized FCT’s collaboration with the business and industry community and its willingness to expand hours for many years to help meet the needs of the community such as providing service 6:00 a.m. to midnight Monday through Saturday and Sunday service.
In February 2010, Fesler was named the 2009 Transit Professional of the Year by the Oklahoma Transit Association. Judges took note of Fesler leading the “most visible transit system in the state.” At the February 2009 Awards for Excellence banquet, FCT received the first-ever Ridership & Expanded
Service Award for the calendar year 2008.
“We are a small transportation operation, but we are doing big things everyday and are giving independence and reliability to our neighbors,” Fesler said.
With the accomplishments adding up, Fesler is quick to share her awards with her staff.
“I work with a good group of people who take a lot of pride in the job they do, which makes it easy to excel. For instance, Sheryal Albertson, one of the drivers I work with, also won the Q-straint award for Special Needs Driver of the Year,” Fesler said. “I am very proud of all of our accomplishments. Our employees go the extra mile and have made many events special.
Fesler mentioned some upcoming events the FCT is hoping to involve with Guthrie, who is home to more
festivals and events than any other Oklahoma community.
You can contact FCT at (405) 282-6000, or visit their website at www.firstcapitaltrolley.com.
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