Leslie S. Richards is the GM and CEO of Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA), where she oversees a budget of more than $2 billion and 9,500 employees. As the sixth largest public transportation agency in the U.S., SEPTA operates across six transportation modes and has 2,800 vehicles in service, 285 subway and rail stations,13,000 bus and trolley stops, and 150 routes. Prior to joining SEPTA in 2020, Richards served as the first woman secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT), one of the largest and most innovative transportation agencies in the U.S. A staunch advocate for women and diversity in transportation and government, Richards has been recognized for her leadership in the industry and commitment to public service. Richards earned a bachelor’s degree in economics and urban studies from Brown University, and a master’s degree in regional planning from the University of Pennsylvania.
Programming descriptions are generated by participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW.