Letter to Members from Emanuela Stocchi
Dear IBTTA Members and Interested Parties:
This year, I am truly honored and privileged to serve as President of IBTTA.
I often say that IBTTA is a unique association, a group of highly competent professionals engaged in advancing our tolling industry. We defend and promote the value of toll-financed transportation. We search for solutions that deliver safe, smart, and efficient mobility for citizens.
And more than all that, IBTTA is a great community of men and women who have built human as well as professional relationships inspired by collaboration. Every time I return home to Italy after an IBTTA meeting, I try to convey the tremendous spirit of cooperation and commitment that I feel. It’s one of the driving forces of our association.
The theme I have chosen for my presidential year, International Mobility Connections, reflects that driving force, and draws on the continuity that I see as the strength of our association. As president, I intend to follow the path laid out by my predecessors and pave the way for my successors, relying always on the experience and the valuable advice of the association’s past presidents. This dedicated group of leaders combines a tremendous amount of knowledge of the past with a vision and thoughtful insights about the future of our industry.
That history brings us to my priorities for IBTTA for 2017:
My number one priority this year is to uphold a key objective in IBTTA’s Strategic Plan: “IBTTA members, stakeholders and nonmembers will find indispensable value in the association’s programs, products, services, and meetings.” Past Presidents Javier Rodriguez and Buddy Croft were both strongly committed to making IBTTA membership an even more valuable proposition. I plan to carry on that focus, supporting the great work of the IBTTA Membership Subcommittee led by Rob Horr and Susan Buse, whose ideas and recommendations will help IBTTA to anticipate and meet the future needs of the association and the wider industry. I am pleased to report that this year’s Membership Subcommittee is adding an International Task Force led by Jordi Graells, aimed at further increasing IBTTA membership by reaching out to new countries and areas of the world interested in the tolling sector.
The Foundation is IBTTA’s research, educational and charitable arm. It supports research on transportation and tolling, conducts training and professional development programs, including the IBTTA Leadership Academy, and supports charitable good works. The IBTTA Foundation Board has had renewed energy in the past year under the leadership of IBTTA’s 2016 President, Buddy Croft. Led by Chair Christine Keville in 2016 and now by John McCuskey in 2017, Foundation board members are deeply engaged and working enthusiastically on some promising new ideas, including a scholarship program and a portfolio of research projects to benefit the industry worldwide.
IBTTA has worked very hard over the last six years to achieve nation-wide interoperability in the U.S. The association made a commitment to Congress to deliver a protocol and a set of business rules that every agency in the U.S. can adopt over a period of time to bring value to their customers. As IBTTA President, I am ready and committed to closely following all related interoperability issues directly affecting our association. I am here to represent every member, and to promote and defend your interests.
Platinum Sponsors Advisory Council
During the last two years, the IBTTA Board of Directors has established a fruitful dialogue with its Platinum sponsors. We have gained a great deal from their advice and guidance in defining and identifying large issues and trends in the tolling industry for discussion by the Board. I am very pleased to announce that IBTTA has 16 Platinum sponsors this year, and I thank each company sponsor for their continuing generous support.
Communication and Public Awareness Campaign
Nearly four years ago, IBTTA launched a targeted communication and public awareness campaign, focused on educating the public, stakeholders, legislators, institutions and the media about the benefits of tolling and infrastructure financing. We have made tremendous progress and achieved great results in this short time. I would like to highlight that the campaign’s focus has not been limited to the United States: It’s important that it has also had an international impact, since the promotion of tolling policies and acceptance of user-financed transportation are among the highest objectives that IBTTA members around the world share.
In 2016, Buddy Croft built a powerful dialogue that connected IBTTA with other associations in the wider transportation community. It was a crucial first step in building a closer, more cooperative working relationship with other representatives of surface transportation. We have a great deal in common across the sector, and we should be creating opportunities to share information, knowledge and ideas and collaborate more broadly. I really appreciated Buddy’s initiative last year to host IBTTA’s Transportation Visioning Summit, a one-day meeting with representatives of 18 mobility and transportation industry organizations, and I look forward to building on the momentum he has created.
My educational and professional background is “international,” so I have a clear view of the need for more international sessions at our meetings. I see the wider scope for learning and networking as a “win” for everyone, members and prospective members alike, delivering added value that we can all bring back to our own organizations. In 2017, IBTTA will host six meetings: in Tampa, Atlanta, Jersey City, New Orleans, Dallas, and my home town, Rome, in October, for the association’s annual International Summit. Please click here for details of this year’s conference lineup. And make sure you have your passport ready for Rome in October.
I look forward to seeing you at one or many of our meetings in 2017. Even if you’re not already an IBTTA member, I encourage you to register and attend. It’s one of the best ways to learn about this incredible association and see the benefits with your own eyes.
2017 IBTTA President