I am proud to announce the winners of the 2022 Wall of Fame and the General Manager’s Award.
The Wall of Fame is an annual award that recognizes the valuable and impactful work of current Metro employees—both individually and as part of a team—who help to improve regional mobility and quality of life in King County.
We had many nominations for the Wall of Fame this year and it is humbling to work alongside so many extraordinary people who serve our community.
During this nomination period, I also selected the recipient of the General Manager’s Award, which recognizes an individual for their outstanding dedication and service to Metro’s customers and community.
And the winners are…
Wall of Fame Team Winner: Metro’s Shelter Appearance Team in Transit Facilities
Our dedicated Utility Laborers on the Shelter Appearance Team in the Transit Facilities Division are the winners of this year’s Wall of Fame Team award.
Shelters are the first and last touchpoint riders have with Metro and provide protection from wet and snowy weather. This team is committed to creating a safe, clean environment for customers to wait to board and exit transit.
Not only do Utility Laborers provide expertise and skill in maintaining approximately 1,800 shelters in our region, they also demonstrate outstanding care and pride in the work they do to keep transit moving. It’s not an easy job and these employees face daily challenges, yet they consistently go above and beyond to ensure a welcoming experience for all who rely on our bus shelters.
I encourage everyone to watch this Metro in Action video, featuring Utility Lead Ben Malmstadt, to learn more about the great work our Shelter Appearance Team provides for Metro.
Wall of Fame Team Honorable Mention: Metro’s Fleet Engineering Team in Vehicle Maintenance
Our Fleet Engineering Team is the winner of the Wall of Fame Team Honorable Mention for providing excellent customer service to our bases and operations divisions on a 24/7 basis, and for demonstrating innovation in the launch of our Battery Electric Bus (BEB) Training Academy.
As written in the nomination form, “this team has untouchable integrity, open hearts and outstanding attitudes” and “every member of the team is a leader and lives the ESJ [Equity and Social Justice] creed of King County.”
Our Fleet Engineering Team contributes to the success of Metro by enhancing education and training, so our Vehicle Maintenance technicians are successful in providing safe and efficient repairs. Thank you for your incredible service and contribution to Metro.
Wall of Fame Individual Award Winner: Dani Hurula, Mobility Division
This year’s Wall of Fame Individual Award goes to Dani Hurula, Metro’s Youth Mobility Program Manager (Transportation Planner II), from the Mobility and Market Innovation team.
Dani is passionate about making transportation more accessible, especially for youth. She started her Metro journey in 2018 as an intern and is now leading an interagency effort to launch the Free Youth Transit Fare initiative—an integral part of the Move Ahead Washington legislation.
During her time at Metro, she has also advocated across multiple school districts, focusing on those serving a high percentage of low-income students, to successfully implement subsidized transit fares as part of the Summer Youth ORCA program and spearheaded the Youth for Equitable Streets campaign to learn how the diverse backgrounds and identities of high school students impact their experiences in navigating public transportation. Thank you, Dani, for making a difference to so many.
General Manager’s Award: Elie Kourdahi, Vehicle Maintenance Division
I am honored to announce Elie Kourdahi, as this year’s winner of the General Manager’s Award. Elie is the Superintendent of Fleet Engineering and Warranty. He is pictured here with his daughter, Linda.
Elie began his Metro journey in 1991 as a mechanic in Vehicle Maintenance. Since day one, Elie has brought enthusiasm and energy to Metro, which has spanned across the multiple roles he’s had since.
Elie’s intuitive nature, empathy and sincerity has made him a natural leader and mentor. During his years at Metro, he has provided invaluable training and expertise to help make our system safer. He leads with a “True North” mindset and lives our values. He is a passionate advocate and champion of Equity and Social Justice.
In his 31 years with Metro, his top priority has always been, and remains, the people—especially his team. It’s not an understatement to say that everyone who knows Elie will say he is one of the kindest people you will ever meet. Thank you, Elie, for modeling true leadership and outstanding service to our employees, customers and community.