Texas Dept. of Transportation’s West Texas region public transportation Coordinator Alfredo Gonzales was named the winner of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Organization President’s Award for promoting public transit in a region larger than most states.

Gonzales was a driving force for EZ Rider in Odessa and Midland; as well as creating a seamless transportation network extending service to 22 rural counties –including several that had not had public transit.

He was a key player in the 2003 startup of the Midland-Odessa Urban Transit District, an urban transportation system for both Odessa and Midland, which at the time was the largest urban area in Texas without local inter-city bus service. Midland had been without intercity bus service since 1986, while Odessa last had intercity bus service in the 1960s.

In 2006, when EZ Rider decided to buy new 30-passenger, low-sulfur diesel fuel-powered buses with earmark funds from the Federal Transit Administration, Gonzales helped facilitate that funding as well as a state award for the local 20% match.

He has worked to secure more than $2.2 million in local commitments for new public transit facilities in three cities – Fort Stockton, Marfa and Presidio.