Rick Kwasneski has been reappointed to serve a fifth four-year term as Chairman of the Pace Board of Directors, gathering unanimous support from the elected County Board officials charged with the selection process. Kwasneski has served as Pace Chairman since 2006, and prior to that served on the Board as the director representing Southwest Cook County dating to 2002. He served the Village of Lemont as Mayor and Trustee from 1985 to 2001.
“I’m honored and humbled to accept this reappointment to the chairmanship of Pace,” said Kwasneski. “We have more work to do to improve suburban transit and with the help of my colleagues on the Board of Directors and Pace staff, we’ll rise to the challenge of ensuring our service meets the needs of northeastern Illinois commuters and businesses in the years ahead.”
Throughout his tenure with Pace, Kwasneski has advocated for Pace passengers, especially passengers with disabilities. “Making sure we are innovative and implementing the appropriate technology to enhance our ADA paratransit passengers’ experience is important to me,” he said. “I will continue to advocate for the resources we need to provide this essential service.”
Kwasneski went on to say, “This is a very exciting time for Pace. We are focusing on pandemic recovery, meeting our goal of zero emissions by 2040, and implementing the largest capital program in our agency’s history. Meeting the diverse and critical needs of our passengers will be instrumental in our region’s economic recovery.”
By law, the Chairman of the Pace Board is appointed by a majority of the suburban members of the Cook County Board of Commissioners and the county board chairs from Lake, McHenry, Kane, DuPage and Will counties.
“As chairman of the Cook County Commissioners Suburban Caucus, I was proud to support Rick Kwasneski for reappointment to his fifth term as Pace Chairman,” said Cook County Commissioner Peter Silvestri. “He has provided exceptional leadership over the years and is the right person to guide Pace moving forward.”
“While Rick has provided steady, sound leadership for 16 years, his stewardship during the pandemic’s three years has been essential to keeping Pace a key part of our economic recovery,” said Cook County Commissioner Larry Suffredin.
Pace has enjoyed numerous successes during Kwasneski’s tenure, among them the successful restructuring of South Cook & Will County service, the launch of Bus on Shoulder service along I-55, the launch of Pace’s largest ever service expansion along the I-90 corridor, coordination of dial-a-ride services to allow travel across local boundaries, and the realization of Pace’s first rapid bus transit service, the Pulse Milwaukee Line.
“I have worked with Rick Kwasneski for many years,” said Will County Executive Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant. “Rick and Pace have been great partners in providing innovative transportation options for the residents of Will County. I look forward to continuing our partnership over the next four years.”
“For more than 20 years, Rick Kwasneski has worked to understand and meet the transportation needs of those we serve,” said DuPage County Chairman Dan Cronin. “I’m pleased to vote in favor of his reappointment as Chairman of the Pace Board of Directors and look forward to our continued work to improve the quality of life for DuPage County residents.”
Kwasneski’s leadership and influence over the public transit industry has expanded beyond Pace’s six-county service area as well. In October 2021, he was appointed to the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) Executive Committee. As one of only 24 national transit leaders selected to serve on this body, he works with transportation agencies and companies across the country to advance the needs of Pace and the industry. In this role, he is able to advocate for Pace’s interests in the national discussion on infrastructure while bringing the nation’s best public transportation practices back to our region.
Officials Voting in Support of the Reappointment of Rick Kwasneski as Pace Chairman
- Frank J. Aguilar, Commissioner, Cook County Board
- Scott Britton, Commissioner, Cook County Board
- Donna Miller, Commissioner, Cook County Board
- Kevin B. Morrison, Commissioner, Cook County Board
- Sean M. Morrison, Commissioner, Cook County Board
- Peter N. Silvestri, Commissioner, Cook County Board
- Deborah Sims, Commissioner, Cook County Board
- Larry Suffredin, Commissioner, Cook County Board
- Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant, Will County Executive
- Michael Buehler, Chairman, McHenry County Board
- Dan Cronin, Chairman, DuPage County Board
- Sandy Hart, Chair, Lake County Board
- Corinne Pierog, Chair, Kane County Board
Pace Suburban Bus safely and efficiently moves people to work, school, and other regional destinations with its family of public transportation services. Pace offers affordable and environmentally responsible transit options for the residents of 272 municipalities in Cook, Will, DuPage, Kane, Lake and McHenry counties. The backbone of Chicago’s suburbs, Pace serves tens of thousands of daily riders. One of the largest bus services in North America, Pace covers 3,677 square miles, an area nearly the size of the state of Connecticut and about 15 times the size of the City of Chicago. Pace’s innovative approach to public transportation gives the agency a national reputation as an industry leader.