Prendergast served for more than three years as president of MTA New York City Transit and for six years as the president of the Long Island Rail Road. He has served as the MTA interim executive director since January 1, 2013. He replaces Joseph Lhota.
"Tom Prendergast has a proven track record of leadership and transportation expertise, especially when it comes to the managing the vast transportation network of the MTA," New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said. "As interim executive director, Tom was vital to the recovery of the MTA after Superstorm Sandy and he will continue to play a crucial role in making the MTA more modern, efficient and storm ready. I look forward to Tom's continued success in running the nation's largest transportation system."
Prendergast said, "The MTA faces enormous challenges to continue improving service while cutting costs and rebuilding stronger after Superstorm Sandy. Leading the MTA through these challenges is critical to the lives of millions of New Yorkers and the future of the New York economy. Gov. Cuomo has repeatedly demonstrated his strong support for the MTA and I deeply appreciate this opportunity."
In 2011, the governor's MTA Search Advisory Committee conducted a national search to find and recommend the most talented candidates to lead the MTA. Prendergast was highly recommended by the committee and committee members were consulted in his nomination. The advisory committee was composed of leading public transportation experts and management professionals in the public and private sectors.