MTA Interim President Sarah Feinberg Steps Down

Sarah Feinberg is stepping down from her role as interim president of the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Feinberg led the MTA through the height of the pandemic and funding challenges for the nation’s largest transit system.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Janno Lieber will serve as acting board chair and CEO of the MTA, effective July 31, while legislation to proceed with outgoing New York City Transit Interim President Sarah Feinberg’s nomination as Board Chair awaits approval from the New York State Senate. Legislation already passed by the Assembly would split the role of MTA Board Chair and CEO. 

Gov. Cuomo announced in June he will nominate Feinberg as the first woman to serve as Board Chair and Lieber as CEO, pending Senate confirmation. Patrick Foye, who has led the agency as President, then Chairman and CEO for the past four years, will leave the agency July 30 and will later step into a new role as Interim President and CEO of Empire State Development.

“Our public transportation systems will be the backbone of New York’s comeback as more and more people return to work in-person,” Gov Cuomo said. “Janno knows what it takes to make the MTA work for the millions of customers who rely on this system every day to get to their destination, and he will serve as Acting Board Chair and CEO. I thank him for his devoted service and the role he played in managing a wide-range of transformative projects across the MTA system and for keeping capital projects moving safely during the COVID-19 public health crisis.”

Prior to his work at MTA, Lieber served as President of World Trade Center Properties for 14 years, where he managed the multi-billion-dollar development of Silverstein Properties’ projects at the World Trade Center. Before that, Lieber headed public-private development at Lawrence Ruben Company, and, as a consultant, worked with clients such as Chicago Transit Authority, New Jersey Transit, and Penn Station Redevelopment Corp. – the agency then responsible for the Moynihan Train Hall project.

“I am excited to get to work leading the MTA’s continued recovery from the pandemic, though I am disappointed I won’t yet be working alongside my supremely qualified friend Sarah Feinberg. We are still counting on the Senate to act on the Governor’s proposal and approve her historic nomination as the MTA’s first woman Chair, “ Janno Lieber, acting chairman and CEO, said,  “In the meantime, I thank the Governor for the opportunity to serve New Yorkers and support the region’s ongoing revival.”

Lieber is currently President of MTA Construction & Development, an 1,800-person organization he built from the ground-up. Lieber oversaw the approval of the groundbreaking $51.5 billion 2020-2024 Capital Program.

 “As we wait for the State Senate to return to session, the Governor, Janno and I agree that this is the best path forward to provide stability and continuity of leadership at the MTA, “ Feinberg said.

“While I am disappointed in the Senate’s delay in taking up deliberations of our nominations, I have no doubt Janno will do a tremendous job in the acting role. He is a visionary leader who has proven time and again during his tenure at Construction & Development that he can deliver on key projects in moments of crisis. I hope to join him soon in leading the MTA and region through this next chapter.”

Lieber helped spearhead the agency’s successful efforts to secure $14 billion from the federal government in the face of the pandemic-induced financial crisis.

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