Education, Not Money, Will Build the Future of America’s Infrastructure


Timothy Tenne is COO of Easy Aerial, a large commercial drone corporation. Prior to this role, he was a senior director at Amtrak, a Deputy COO of a large transit agency in our country, and a Deputy Chief of Safety at another large agency.

He shared his thoughts on the state of infrastructure in the United States.

“Infrastructure will need to change by hiring professional, college-educated workers and increasing infrastructure funding to address the dilapidated infrastructure throughout our country. For the past 50 years, our country has kicked the can to the right with regards to asset management, modern methodologies and taxonomies.

With regards to our transportation, it is also not addressed. That’s due to a few factors.

“We have to address the needs to make people move from out of their cars, whether combustion engine or electric, to pick the right mode of transportation.” – Timothy Tenne

No. 1, we keep churning the bad. So when I say churning the bad, we continue to promote and to allow other leaders to continue to lead other transit agencies who don’t have engineering, MBAs or other college or advanced degrees to be able to address the needs of our nation, much less lead large organizations and be able to address these things.

We need to rely upon the benchmarks and best practices of those who have already achieved these best practices and benchmarks to include aviation, a very high level of safety, a very high level of efficiency, a very high level of effectiveness and the ability to ensure that infrastructure is cared for and asset management is cared for and maintenance practices are cared for at a higher level.

In the United States, we are very far behind when it comes to rail transit integration of our transportation methods. Money won’t address everything. You need to ensure that you hire people from the outside, not 30-year railroaders or 30-year transit experts to address the needs. They don’t know what we need. They continue to allow contractors and outside agencies to not provide the best practices and benchmark for our country.

It’s more than just creating a new bridge or a new tunnel. It’s much more than that.

We have to address the needs to make people move from out of their cars, whether combustion engine or electric, to pick the right mode of transportation. It has to be efficient. It has to be there when I need it. And it has to be competitive with regards to ticket pricing to Uber, Lyft, electric Tesla cars, etc. So, we need to address all those issues. And we need leaders that can address that.”

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