top of page

OPTA Excellence Awards 2023

OPTA Celebrates Excellence in Public Transit!

OPTA’s Excellence Awards honor individuals and organizations who have exemplified leadership and advocacy for public transit in Ohio. Transit employees, board members and community stakeholders who, by their commitment, work, actions and passion, deserve to be celebrated. Nominations should be submitted by transit associate and mobility manager members of OPTA, the 65 + transit systems in the state of Ohio and transit stakeholders.

2022 OPTA Excellence Awards.png

The past year continued to provide unprecedented challenges to all who work within public transit as well as those stakeholders that support the industry. 

We encourage the leadership of Ohio’s transit systems to take the time to honor individuals who have demonstrated themselves to be role models and leaders in public transit.


Deadline extended! Submit your application through Aug. 18th at 5PM.


OPTA Excellence Award 2022 Recipients

Leonard Ronis Award

Awarded to one recipient for noteworthy accomplishments in the field of public transit.

Darryl Haley, (SORTA)

Mobility Manager

Awarded to a Mobility Manager whose advocacy, innovative collaborative

efforts and dedicated public service best represents the spirit and professionalism of mobility management.

Melissa Leckrone, (Perry Co. MM)

Legislator of the Year

Awarded to one elected official who has advanced the improvement of

public transit statewide.

Sen. Bill Reineke

Under Forty Rising Stars

Awarded to transit professionals and stakeholders under the age of 40 to celebrate the future of transit in Ohio. Nominations will be judged based upon achievement in transit and leadership within their specific communities.

Nick Borelli, (LAKETRAN)
Matt Moorman, (SORTA)
Valerie Shaw, (Coshocton Co Coor Transit)

Luke Morgan, (Butler Co RTA)

Milestone Award

Award recognizes individuals or transit agencies reaching significant milestones in the transit industry. Milestones can be very diverse and could include an individual who has given a significant number of years of service or has implemented a system-wide program that has had a major impact.

Rob Stewart, (SORTA)

Vincent Best, (SORTA)

Rob Balasz, (LAKETRAN)

Collaborative Excellence

The OPTA Collaborative Excellence award recognizes a program, business, academic institution or individual which has demonstrated an exemplary partnership or an innovative collaboration within the public transit industry for a sustained period of three months or more.

Suzie Graham, Downtown Akron Partnership

Community Impact

Awarded to any transit employee who has had a significant impact within a community. Examples include, but not limited to, a heroic act while in the line of duty or organizing an employee food drive for less fortunate individuals.

Ivy Curtis, (COTA)

Lifetime Achievement

Awarded to one recipient for noteworthy accomplishments in the field of public transit.

Gary Spring, (Akron Metro)

bottom of page