(November 1, 2021) Columbia, SC –The Central Midlands Regional Transit Authority (The COMET) announced that it has named Derrick Huggins as the Interim Executive Director after a unanimous vote from The COMET’s Board of Directors at their recent meeting.
Huggins, who has served on the Board of Directors of The COMET for more than ten years, brings more than 30 years of experience in transportation to the position. He spent the majority of that time at the University of South Carolina leading their successful logistics and transportation program as Vice President of Facilities and Transportation.
“Public transportation has always been a connector which provides access in the community,” said Huggins. “My vision for The COMET is ensuring access to opportunities in education, increasing access to opportunities in employment, and partnering with local businesses to expand connections to new customers and workforce.”
From driving a school bus at the tender age of 16, to holding leadership positions in the industry, Huggins says that he is both humbled by the opportunity to serve and excited by the opportunity to bring new improvements to The COMET transportation system. His ultimate goal is to positively impact access to healthcare, education and other quality of life aspirations for citizens of the Midlands while expanding opportunities for economic advancement. Huggins will work closely with LeRoy DesChamps, who earlier had agreed to serve in the Interim Executive Director role for a brief period of time until a successor was identified by the Board.
The Vice Chair of The COMET Board of Directors, Allison Terracio expressed confidence in Huggins’ abilities as well as appreciation of DesChamps’ role.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors, we look forward to working with Mr. Huggins in his new role and wish him much continued success,” said Terracio. “We also would like to convey our deepest thanks to Mr. DesChamps as he graciously stepped up to temporarily lead as Interim Executive Director during a critical period. We are grateful that he will be here to help with this transition.”
Huggins’ tenure as Interim Executive Director begins November 1, 2021.
About The COMET: The COMET is a service of the Central Midlands Regional Transit Authority and provides countywide public transit services on 34 fixed routes, UofSC Transit, OnDemand/ReFlex services, vanpool service for commuters, subsidy programs with Uber and Lyft and DART for transportation to grocery stores and at night, ADA complementary paratransit service throughout Richland and eastern Lexington Counties and eight Blue Bike bikeshare stations in Downtown Columbia. The COMET transports approximately 2.8 million passenger trips a year on a fleet of more than 80 buses, vans and trolleys. Transit services are provided under contract with RATP Dev USA, Enterprise Holdings, Lyft, Uber and Bewegen. For additional The COMET information, please call (803) 255-7100, TDD/TTY: 711 through the relay service, email: email@example.com or visit www.catchthecomet.org.
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