"As president, I am responsible for the entire staff and I report to the board of directors," Cline said. "I think my top priorities are to make sure the train is in operation and ensure that we maintain good bus service to our customers."
Cline said his first day on the job would consist of meeting with the staff and getting to know them better. He said he also wants to ensure that he understands the issues facing the project.
Cline brings 20 years of municipal experience in transportation to DCTA. From 1990 to 1998 he worked for the city of Beaumont in its municipal transit and traffic operations. After leaving that position, he worked for the city of Irving. In that position he was responsible for dealing with DART projects, including the DART orange line. His oversaw the alignment, funding and resolution of the key design of the orange line, construction and right-of-way.
In his position with Irving, Cline also oversaw the city's water utilities, solid waste, transportation, engineering and streets functions. He is a registered Professional Engineer in Texas. He also worked closely with the Trinity Railway Express and the Federal Railroad Administration on crossing related issues within Irving.
Cline's experience extends beyond the municipal level to the state and regional level. He has served on the boards of the Upper Trinity Regional Water District and the Surface Transportation Technical Committee.
"Jim Cline is a well regarded and respected transportation leader in North Texas. His involvement in numerous highway, transit and public works projects throughout the area illustrates his commitment to improving the quality of life for those he serves," said Charles Emery, DCTA chairman of the board. "His experience and leadership style are a perfect match for our growing agency."
Cline is currently a lieutenant colonel and commands the 386th Engineer Battalion. He is a 25-year veteran of the Texas Army National Guard. He was a distinguished military graduate, graduating Cum Laude from Texas A&M University, where he also received his master's degree in civil engineering.
Cline and his wife Nancy live in north Carrollton. He said his new position is a great professional opportunity.
Cline replaces Jim Witt, who has served the authority in an interim capacity since early 2009. Under Witt's leadership over the past year, the authority has advanced A-train construction, expanded bus service, progressed design on a new bus operations and maintenance facility in Denton. Witt was also part of DCTA's record transit ridership, exceeding two million annual passengers.