About Texas Rail Advocates

Texas Rail Advocates is a 501(c)3 not for profit grass roots organization. TRA was formed in 2000 to educate and inform the public and private sector on the benefits of the then newly designated South Central High Speed Rail Corridor.

TRA has evolved into a broader educational and informational resource that covers both freight and passenger rail issues in Texas and the Southwest.

Our mission statement: To facilitate Texas' economic growth and enhance the quality of life enjoyed by its people by advancing the development of rail service to its full potential as a carrier of freight and passengers.

The Board of Directors of TRA serve in a voluntary capacity. Meeting dates are posted in the Events section on the TRA website. The public is invited to attend.

Our mailing address is:

Texas Rail Advocates
800 Jaguar Lane
Dallas, Texas 75226.

Staff & Board

Peter LeCody

President / Chair / Chief Voluntary Officer
Peter is a Dallas business owner and serves as President of Texas Rail Advocates. He currently serves on the TxDOT I-20 Steering Committee. He served as Chair of Rail Passengers Association (formerly known as National Association of Railroad Passengers), based in Washington D.C. Peter served on the Texas Transportation Commission I-35 Corridor Advisory Committee and on the Steering Committee of the TxDOT Rail Division when it was formed. The Steering Committee was responsible for developing the State Rail Plan. Peter served on the City of Coppell Regional Transportation Task Force. He received the Champion of the Rails award from Amtrak President Joe Boardman. You can follow him on twitter @railadvo.

Taylor Sharpe

Registrar / Director / Texas Rail Advocates Board
Taylor Sharpe is an founding Board Member with Texas Rail Advocates. His responsibilities at TRA include maintaining the membership database, conference registration, and newsletter communications. Professionally Mr. Sharpe is President of TMS Software, LLC, a Texas based custom business software development provider. Mr. Sharpe has a BS in Chemical Engineering from the University of Texas in Austin. Previously Mr. Sharpe was an environmental engineer for a US Government agency and a project engineer for a European based oil company at a polypropylene plant. For fun, Mr. Sharpe likes to snowboard, play ping pong, and ride electric unicycles.

Joshua D. Coran

Director / Texas Rail Advocates Board
Mr. Coran was born and raised in the Boston, Massachusetts, area. He holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an MBA from the Katz School of Management, University of Pittsburgh. He has been a Registered Professional Engineer in Illinois since 1976. Mr. Coran has worked in the railroad and railroad supply industry exclusively since 1966. He has worked for the New York Central, Illinois Central and Alaska railroads, having been Chief Mechanical Engineer of the latter for 21 years. He was Chief Mechanical Officer of Trinity Railway Express from 2004 to 2007. He has also held positions with Westinghouse Electric's Transportation Equipment Division and the passenger division of Pullman-Standard, where he was Manager of Manufacturing Engineering. Since the beginning of 2008, Mr. Coran has been Director of Operations at Talgo, Inc., the Seattle based subsidiary of Patentes Talgo, SL, of Spain.

Karl Ziebarth

Director / Texas Rail Advocates Board, Treasurer
Karl Ziebarth is a professional transportation consultant, assisting investors and lenders to rail, truck, and port enterprises. With a lifetime of experience, he advises on strategic options, translates what is happening on the ground into financial data, and can demonstrate to lenders and investors the range of outcomes from their investments. He serves a variety of clients, domestically and internationally. Karl was an executive with the KATY Railroad.

George Blount

Director / Texas Rail Advocates Board
George has been active in rail transportation issues for several decades in the Southwest.

John Radovich

Director / Texas Rail Advocates Board
John is one of the founding board members of Texas Rail Advocates. He runs Johns Cars, a Dallas-based company and owns a number of ex-Amtrak passenger cars.

Bill Glavin

Director / Texas Rail Advocates Board
Bill Glavin joined the Board of Texas Rail Advocates in 2021. He has over 35 years of experience in the rail industry and served as the first Rail Division Director at the Texas Department of Transportation from 2009 to 2015. Bill has worked for Burlington Northern Railroad, North American RailNet and Bridgefarmer. He holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Johns Hopkins and a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Michigan State and is licensed as a professional engineer in Wisconsin and Texas.

Bruce Ashton

Director / Texas Rail Advocates Board
Bruce joined the Texas Rail Advocates board in 2019. He lives in San Antonio and is a Division Leader for D.C.-based Rail Passengers Association

Curtis Garrison

Director / Texas Rail Advocates Board
Curtis has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and has worked at corporations such as Northern Telecom (Nortel Networks), Worldcom, EDS, and Apple. While at Nortel, Curtis was Project Manager and Creative Director for the first Official Dallas Cowboys web site and developed special projects for the Indy Racing League.

Mark A. Martin

Director / Texas Rail Advocates Board
Mark is a Professional Engineer with over 35 years of project management, design, and construction experience in the railroad, transit, and highway industries. He has been instrumental in designing and developing transportation systems that integrate freight rail, commuter and intercity rail and highway facilities. He has worked with railroads, transportation authorities, and DOTs in developing efficient and economic freight/LRT/commuter/intercity rail systems. He was born and raised in Fort Worth and graduated with a BS in Civil Engineering from Texas Tech University in 1984. He served as design PM and Construction Manager on the BNSF/Union Pacific Tower 55 Multimodal Improvements project in Fort Worth. He has been a member of Texas Rail Advocates since 2005.

Joy Smith

Director / Texas Rail Advocates Board
Joy retired from Amtrak with 40 years of service. Her last post was as Superintendent of Passenger Services at Amtrak 's Chicago base. She was a driving force behind TEMPO (Texas Eagle Marketing and Performance Organization), the grass roots organization that helped save and promote Amtrak's daily Texas Eagle service. Joy championed passenger rail progress across the Southwest for more than 15 years, particularly for stations in East Texas.

Brian Royak

Director / Texas Rail Advocates Board
Brian has been working in the railroad industry for the past 8 plus years after serving active duty in the United States Coast Guard and still remains a reservist.. Previously, Brian was in IT for nearly 20 years in Cleveland, Ohio. He played college football at Ashland University and attained his Bachelor Of Science Degree from Cleveland State University. Brian has been a member of Texas Rail Advocates since 2020.

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