News

STAR Transit announces Employee and Driver of the Year

 

For Immediate Release

 

TERRELL, Texas — Dec. 18, 2023 — Eight people were recently honored during STAR Transit’s Quarterly Driver Safety Meeting and Employee Appreciation Week.  Teresa Elliott was announced as the 2023 Employee of the Year, and Donna Harwood received the 2023 Driver of Year award.

Nominees for Driver of the Year included Harwood and Yolanda Hamilton. Harwood has been with the agency for over 11 years and drives the STARNow service in Terrell.

“A reliable, hardworking employee is the best gift a leader can ask for,” Antonio Harris, STAR Transit’s transportation director, said. “Donna has been just that for over 11 years.  This award is very well deserved.”

As recipient of Driver of the Year, Harwood received $1,000.

Nominees for Employee of the Year included Elliott, Gary Williams, Kenyatta Lewis, and Jasmine Wynn. Elliott has been with the agency almost 10 years and serves as the project manager.

“Teresa knows how to get stuff done,” Tommy Henricks, STAR Transit executive director, said. “Her attention to detail and determination to see the agency succeed and grow is a huge asset. Congratulations Teresa!”

As the recipient of Employee of the Year, Elliott received $500 and two paid days off.

STAR Transit launched the Employee of the Year and Driver of the Year initiative in September of 2015.

In addition to Driver of the Year and Employee of the Year, the following employees also received recognition.

  • Outstanding Customer Service: Uvet Moss and Kenyatta Lewis
  • Humanitarian Award: Debbie Goggans
  • Outstanding Service: Dale Wilkins
  • Extra Mile Award: Saundra Bates
  • Driver Rookie of the Year: Delisa Galloway

“These programs recognize many of the outstanding employees we have on our team.  Congratulations to all our recipients!” Henricks said.

About STAR Transit.  Founded in 1988, STAR Transit is the fourth largest transit agency in the North Central Texas region—and the largest not funded by sales tax. Revenues are derived from federal and state grants as well as local partnerships with cities, counties and businesses.   STAR Transit provides safe, affordable and convenient transportation to the general public, seniors, veterans, and persons with disabilities for access to jobs, healthcare, personal services, retail, and entertainment, etc. More than 100 employees are responsible for providing over 215,000 rides annually.   The agency is headquartered in Terrell, TX.  For more information, visit STARtransit.org.

STAR Transit announces Holiday Schedule

HOLIDAY SCHEDULE

 Fri., 12/22 (In observance of Christmas Eve)

  • STAR Transit admin office closed/Call Center 6 am – 6 pm, booking GoLink trips only.
  • No Demand Response service.
  • No STARNow service in Kaufman County, Mesquite, Balch Springs, Seagoville, DeSoto, Cedar Hill nor Duncanville.
  • No fixed route service (Balch Springs Rte. 101/Lawnview Shuttle/Hutchins Rte. 401).
  • Inland Port Connect GoLink operated by STAR Transit will operate a reduced bus schedule.

Sun., 12/24 (Christmas Eve)

  • No fixed route service (Hutchins Rte. 401).

 Mon., 12/25 (Christmas Day)

  • In observance of  Christmas Day, offices will be closed and no STAR Transit services will operate
  • No Inland Port Connect GoLink operated by STAR Transit service.

Mon., 1/1/2024 (New Year’s Day)

  • In observance of New Year’s Day, offices will be closed and no STAR Transit services will operate
  • No Inland Port Connect GoLink operated by STAR Transit service.

For more information, call 877-631-5278, Monday – Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. or visit www.STARtransit.org.

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About STAR Transit.  Founded in 1988, STAR Transit is the fourth largest transit agency in the North Central Texas region—and the largest not funded by sales tax. Revenues are derived from federal and state grants as well as local partnerships with cities, counties and businesses.   STAR Transit provides safe, affordable and convenient transportation to the general public, seniors, veterans, and persons with disabilities for access to jobs, healthcare, personal services, retail, and entertainment, etc. More than 100 employees are responsible for providing over 215,000 rides annually.   The agency is headquartered in Terrell, TX.  For more information, visit STARtransit.org.

STARNow Saturday Service Coming to Terrell

TERRELL, TX — Nov. 1, 2023 — STAR Transit will offer STARNow service on Saturdays in Terrell beginning November 11. The addition of Saturday service provides riders greater flexibility to access safe, affordable, and convenient public transit across the city.

“Our residents rely on STAR Transit every day, so we are pleased to support Saturday service to increase our citizens’ mobility options,” said Terrell Mayor Rick Carmona. “As the headquarters of STAR Transit, Terrell has a long and positive relationship with the agency, and we look forward to continuing to expand public transit options in our great city.”

STARNow offers same-day trips within city zones serviced by STAR Transit, with fares between $1 to $2. Saturday STARNow service in Terrell will be available 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. In addition, Saturday service is available in Balch Springs and Mesquite.

“STAR Transit stands firmly dedicated to identifying new ways to broaden our transit options and enhance convenience for our riders,” said Tommy Henricks, the agency’s executive director. “Whether you’re booking a STARNow ride to go to the grocery store, see the doctor, visit family, or travel to countless other destinations, STAR Transit connects you to where you want to go.”

City Manager Mike Sims said, “Due to STAR Transit’s efficiency and hard work to obtain grants, they are able to provide a cost-effective and high-quality service. STAR Transit gives residents with transportation challenges another option to get to work. We can all be proud of STAR Transit’s contribution to our local economy and to the quality of life of our transit-dependent residents.

To book a STARNow ride, call 877-631-5278 or use the STARNow app, which can be downloaded free from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. Wait times are subject to availability. Se habla español.

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About STAR Transit.  Founded in 1988, STAR Transit is the fourth-largest transit agency in the North Central Texas region — and the largest not funded by sales tax.  Revenues are derived from federal and state grants as well as local partnerships with cities, counties, and businesses.  STAR Transit provides safe, affordable, and convenient transportation to the general public, seniors, veterans, and persons with disabilities for access to jobs, healthcare, personal services, retail, entertainment, and more.  Over 100 employees are responsible for providing more than 215,000 rides annually.  The agency is headquartered in Terrell, TX.  For more information, visit STARtransit.org.

Ride Free to Vote

TERRELL, TX — Oct. 24, 2023 — STAR Transit is offering free, round-trip rides to local polling places for early voting, encouraging all registered voters to participate.

Free service for early voting continues weekdays through Friday, November 3, across the entire STAR Transit service area.  In Mesquite and Balch Springs only, free service is available for early voting Saturday, October 28.  Free service is available across the entire service area on Election Day, Tuesday, November 7.

All STAR Transit services are available, including Demand Response, Fixed Routes, and STARNow.  To ride free on STARNow, use the code Vote2023.  Rides must be in the STAR Transit service area or STARNow zone and are subject to availability.  Voters must tell bus operators and reservationists they are riding to and from the polls.

To schedule a free ride to vote, call STAR Transit no less than 30 minutes in advance of the desired trip.  Scheduling agents are available during normal business hours, 8 a.m.–4 p.m., Monday–Friday at (877) 631-5278.  To book a STARNow ride, use the STARNow app, which can be downloaded free from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.  Se habla español.

Voting Locations:

Make your voice heard by casting your ballot.

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About STAR Transit.  Founded in 1988, STAR Transit is the fourth-largest transit agency in the North Central Texas region — and the largest not funded by sales tax.  Revenues are derived from federal and state grants as well as local partnerships with cities, counties, and businesses.  STAR Transit provides safe, affordable, and convenient transportation to the general public, seniors, veterans, and persons with disabilities for access to jobs, healthcare, personal services, retail, entertainment, and more.  Over 100 employees are responsible for providing more than 215,000 rides annually.  The agency is headquartered in Terrell, TX.  For more information, visit STARtransit.org.

STAR Transit Elects New Board Representation Amid Regional Expansion

For Immediate Release

STAR Transit Elects New Board Representation Amid Regional Expansion

TERRELL, TX— Sept. 26, 2023— The recent election of Rachel L. Proctor and Dr. Esther Williams to the STAR Transit Board of Directors ensures the agency will continue to fulfill its goals of offering reliable, dependable, and friendly transportation in current and future service areas, said Executive Director Tommy Henricks in his announcement.

Rachel L. Proctor, Mayor of the City of DeSoto, fills the vacancy in Place 3.  Proctor was initially elected as mayor of DeSoto in a special election in 2021 and exhibited leadership and ingenuity in guiding the city through the COVID-19 pandemic.  Her emphasis on public engagement, health, and community service led to a landslide reelection victory in 2022 in which she garnered more than 90% of the vote.  Proctor has a background in transportation, serving as a member of the Regional Transportation Council and the Dallas Regional Transportation Coalition.  In addition to her mayoral duties, Proctor is also an entrepreneur and ordained minister.

“I am excited about being named to STAR Transit’s Board of Directors because it allows me to bring my ideas and perspectives to the development and coordination of transit improvements throughout the region,” said Proctor. “We know the residents of the cities in STAR Transit’s service area have transit needs that go well beyond their city’s borders, and I am eager to work with this forward-thinking board and staff to continue to develop innovative ideas and seek out new technologies that will improve their access and increase their transit options.”

In addition to Proctor, Dr. Esther Williams was elected to the STAR Transit Board of Directors as the Place 3 Alternate Board Member.  Dr. Williams currently serves as the Assistant to the City Manager of DeSoto and manages the City’s grants.  Dr. Williams’ background as a former teacher and grants manager for DeSoto ISD gives her a robust background in financial management and community engagement, and those skills will translate into strong leadership as she assumes her new role on the STAR Transit Board of Directors.

“The addition of Mayor Proctor and Dr. Williams to our board ensures STAR Transit moves forward in accordance with the needs and desires of our communities,” concluded Henricks.

STAR Transit board members are elected to four-year terms; there are no term limits.  When a seat opens, the organization sends letters to the chief elected official of every county and municipality in the service area, notifying them of the opportunity to nominate an at-large member.

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About STAR Transit.  Founded in 1988, STAR Transit is the fourth-largest transit agency in the North Central Texas region—and the largest not funded by sales tax.  Revenues are derived from federal and state grants as well as local partnerships with cities, counties, and businesses.  STAR Transit provides safe, affordable, and convenient transportation to the general public, seniors, veterans, and persons with disabilities for access to jobs, healthcare, personal services, retail, entertainment, and more.  Over 100 employees are responsible for providing more than 215,000 rides annually.  The agency is headquartered in Terrell, TX.  For more information, visit STARtransit.org.

Closed Labor Day

In observance of Labor Day, STAR Transit’s offices will be closed Monday, September 4. This includes demand response, same day service and all bus routes operated by STAR Transit. For more information call 877-631-5278 or visit www.STARtransit.org. Enjoy time with family and have a safe holiday

Ribbon Cutting Launches New Public Transportation in Duncanville

Ribbon Cutting Launches New Public Transportation in Duncanville

TERRELL, TX— July 18, 2023— STAR Transit, a regional public transit agency, held a ribbon cutting ceremony July 17th to celebrate the expansion of public transportation services in Duncanville.  Residents can now hail rides within Duncanville and connect to other regional transportation networks.

The ceremony was held in collaboration with the City of Duncanville, the Duncanville Chamber of Commerce, the Duncanville Community and Economic Development Corporation (DCEDC), and the North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG).

Steve Martin, the President and CEO of the Chamber, opened the ceremony by highlighting the need for affordable public transportation as the city continues to grow. Barry Gordon, the Mayor of Duncanville, followed by saying, “As both the mayor and a resident, I am excited to welcome STAR Transit to the City of Duncanville.  I anticipate that this accessible transit option will enrich the quality of life for our seniors, persons with disabilities, or anyone needing to get around our fine city.”

Two service options are available in Duncanville.  Dial-A-Ride service can be booked between one business day to two weeks in advance and allows riders to connect with DART and other regional transportation networks.  STARNow trips can be booked via the call center or the STARNow app and offer same-day service within the Duncanville area.

To book a ride, download the STARNow app on the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store, or call (877) 631-5278.  Se habla español.  To learn more about STAR Transit routes and services, visit www.STARtransit.org.

“Our citizens now have an affordable mobility resource that can get them to the grocery store, the doctor, or out to enjoy a meal with friends at a local restaurant,” Mayor Gordon concluded before the ribbon cutting.

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About STAR Transit.  Founded in 1988, STAR Transit is the fourth-largest transit agency in the North Central Texas region—and the largest not funded by sales tax.  Revenues are derived from federal and state grants as well as local partnerships with cities, counties, and businesses.  STAR Transit provides safe, affordable, and convenient transportation to the general public, seniors, veterans, and persons with disabilities for access to jobs, healthcare, personal services, retail, entertainment, and more.  Over 100 employees are responsible for providing more than 155,000 rides annually.  The agency is headquartered in Terrell, TX.  For more information, visit www.STARtransit.org.

New Transportation Options Launching in Duncanville

For Immediate Release

New Transportation Options Launching in Duncanville

TERRELL, TX— July 11, 2023— STAR Transit, a regional public transit agency, has announced the official rollout of public transportation in Duncanville.  Effective July 17, residents can hail rides within Duncanville and connect to other regional transportation networks.  This expansion is made possible through partnerships with the City of Duncanville, the Duncanville Community and Economic Development Corporation (DCEDC), and the North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG).

“STAR Transit has a long history of providing affordable and reliable public transportation to southern Dallas County,” said Tommy Henricks, STAR Transit Executive Director.  “After launching service in Cedar Hill last month, we are excited to now extend public transportation to riders in Duncanville and beyond.”

STAR Transit will launch two service options in Duncanville.  Dial-A-Ride service can be booked between one business day to two weeks in advance and allows riders to connect with DART and other regional transportation networks.  STARNow trips can be booked via the call center or the STARNow app and offer same-day service within the Duncanville area.

“As both the mayor and a resident, I am excited to welcome STAR Transit to the City of Duncanville,” said Mayor Barry Gordon. “I anticipate that this accessible transit option will enrich the quality of life for our seniors, persons with disabilities, or anyone needing to get around our fine city.

“Our citizens now have an affordable mobility resource that can get them to the grocery store, the doctor, or out to enjoy a meal with friends at a local restaurant,” concluded Mayor Gordon.

To book a ride, download the STARNow app on the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store.  Riders without smartphones can call (877) 631-5278.  Se habla español.  To learn more about STAR Transit routes and services, visit www.STARtransit.org.

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About STAR Transit.  Founded in 1988, STAR Transit is the fourth-largest transit agency in the North Central Texas region—and the largest not funded by sales tax.  Revenues are derived from federal and state grants as well as local partnerships with cities, counties, and businesses.  STAR Transit provides safe, affordable, and convenient transportation to the general public, seniors, veterans, and persons with disabilities for access to jobs, healthcare, personal services, retail, entertainment, and more.  Over 100 employees are responsible for providing more than 155,000 rides annually.  The agency is headquartered in Terrell, TX.  For more information, visit www.STARtransit.org.

Duncanville Public Comment Period Underway

The public comment period is underway for the proposed transit services in Duncanville. The public comment period will end at the close of business on July 7, 2023. There are several ways to complete a Public Comment Form.

For more information, call 877-631-5278 or go to STAR Transit’s website, www.STARtransit.org.

STAR Transit Elects New Board Member

For Immediate Release

STAR Transit Elects New Board Member to Ensure Sustainable Growth

TERRELL, TX— June 20, 2023— The recent election of Mayrani Velazquez, along with the return of Dana Macalik, to the STAR Transit Board of Directors positions the agency for smart, sustainable growth through visionary leadership for years to come, said Executive Director Tommy Henricks in his announcement.

Mayrani Velazquez, Mayor Pro Tem and Council Member in the City of Terrell, was elected as an alternate member to Place 4.  Velazquez is not only embedded in the Terrell community, but she also understands the broader area STAR Transit serves.  She is the Team Leader of Community Outreach for Children’s Health, where she coordinates outreach for a nine-county region. 

“Mayor Pro Tem Velazquez’s strength in strategic planning, establishing priorities, executing initiatives, and managing relationships in both the private sector and in public office makes her a valuable addition to our Board of Directors,” said Henricks.  “Her previous experience with community outreach in the STAR Transit service area, especially with the region’s growing Latino population, ensures the agency will effectively address community needs.”

In addition to Velazquez, Dana Macalik was re-elected to the STAR Transit Board as the Place 7 primary board member.  Macalik currently serves as Rockwall County Commissioner.  She previously served as a council member for the City of Rockwall, where she advocated for sustainable growth that improved quality of life in the community.

“Board members are critical in ensuring STAR Transit moves forward in accordance with the needs and desires of our communities.  As we continue to offer safe, dependable, and friendly transportation in our current service areas, we are looking forward to working toward sustainable growth and leveraging innovation to expand service to reach even more communities under the Board’s leadership,” Henricks said.

STAR Transit board members are elected to four-year terms; there are no term limits.  When a seat opens, the organization sends letters to the chief elected official of every county and municipality in the service area, notifying them of the opportunity to nominate an at-large member.

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About STAR Transit.  Founded in 1988, STAR Transit is the fourth-largest transit agency in the North Central Texas region—and the largest not funded by sales tax.  Revenues are derived from federal and state grants as well as local partnerships with cities, counties, and businesses.  STAR Transit provides safe, affordable, and convenient transportation to the general public, seniors, veterans, and persons with disabilities for access to jobs, healthcare, personal services, retail, entertainment, and more.  Over 100 employees are responsible for providing more than 155,000 rides annually.  The agency is headquartered in Terrell, TX.  For more information, visit STARtransit.org.

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