Watco makes management appointments to WSOR; Grand Elk Railroad

Written by Jenifer Nunez, assistant editor

Watco Transportation Services appointed Larry McCloud to general manager for the Wisconsin & Southern Railroad (WSOR). He will be responsible for the daily operations, specifically focusing on improving safety, productivity and efficiency.


McCloud has 39 years of experience in the rail industry. Most recently he served as general manager for the Grand Elk Railroad. Before joining the Watco Team he served as vice president of operations for Industrial Railway, a position he held since 1997. From 1991 to 1997, he served as president of the Tuscola Saginaw Bay Railroad. He was vice president at RailAmerica from 1986 to 1991 and from 1975 to 1986, he worked for the C&O Railway in many positions, such as brakeman, conductor, fireman, engineer, yardmaster and trainmaster.

Additionally, Joe Via has been appointed to director of operations for WSOR. He will be overseeing the operations of the railroad and will be managing and directing the team in the areas of safety, finances, customer relations and team development.

Via joined the Watco Team in 2012 as director of switching for the West Region. He worked for a year with Union Pacific before joining the West Region and he worked for 13 years for Utah Railway, a Genesee & Wyoming railroad. He held various positions such as conductor, assistant trainmaster, trainmaster and director of safety.

The company also appointed Chris Norman to general manager for the Grand Elk Railroad (GDLK). He will assume responsibility and oversight of the GDLK with the Customer First Foundation Principles being the highest priority. He will manage, direct and provide insight and follow up, maintain safety culture, set expectations and lead and develop all team members.

Norman started working for the GDLK in February of 2014 as senior trainmaster. He worked for the Canadian National from 2007 to 2014, holding the positions of trainmaster, division trainmaster and assistant superintendent. From 1997 to 2007, he worked for CSX as conductor, engineer, yardmaster and trainmaster.


Categories: OFF Track Maintenance, Shortline/Regional