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SEPTA Hires Veterans

Jerri Williams
SEPTA Director of Media Relations

Among SEPTA's employee ranks are armed forces veterans who served in military conflicts dating back from Korea to the present day in Afghanistan.

Since 2001, when 94 SEPTA employees were called up to active duty, SEPTA has averaged 23 members of our employee family who have been or are currently away from their families and work, serving in our armed forces.

SEPTA General Manager Joe Casey is proud of SEPTA's commitment to hire veterans. "I personally want to thank all of America's heroes for their service to our country. I especially appreciate those who continue to serve their communities through their work in the transportation industry."

SEPTA has built strategic relationships with several veteran support organizations in an effort to strengthen our outreach to the military veteran's community. Greater Philadelphia Veterans Network (GPVN), Project HOME - Homeless Veteran's Outreach Program, The Philadelphia Veterans Multi-Service & Education Center, Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, Bureau of Workforce Development Partnership, Philadelphia City Council Veterans Advisory Commission are some of the key veteran organizations that partner with SEPTA to assist veterans looking for employment.

SEPTA recognizes that veterans are excellent candidates for transportation positions as they are accustomed to adhering to strict schedules and working a variety of hours. Many applicants have training and skills that are transferrable to the Authority, such as vehicle maintenance and driving.

Dan Amspacher, SEPTA's Director of Recruitment and Talent Management serves as Vice Chairperson of the GPVN's Employer's Advisory Board. "Based on their ability to assimilate smoothly into a large mechanized transportation organization, SEPTA has a strong commitment to hiring veterans. Military veterans bring with them highly desirable technical training. Their knowledge of current electrical and mechanical technologies, logistical command, and 'get the mission accomplished' mentality makes for an ideal employment applicant."

To reach its veterans hiring goal, SEPTA participates in careers fairs across the Greater Philadelphia region and works with numerous military-based organizations.

While SEPTA continues to work towards improving it's percentages of veterans hiring, it should be noted that SEPTA not only met APTA's Railroad industry veteran hiring goal of 12 percent, established in July 2012, but exceeded it by 1.6 percent. Jordan Ranalli was one of the veterans hired by SEPTA in June of 2011 as Conductor Engineer Trainee. Ranalli had initially inquired about joining the Transit Police Department. He is now an assistant conductor. He has an excellent attendance record and has proven to be a model employee, traits he no doubt acquired while in the military.

SEPTA Veteran Hires for Targeted Positions - January 1, 2013 to Present:

- Bus Operator: 196 Total Hires, 14 Veteran Hires (7.1 percent)

- Custodian: 37 Total Hires, 4 Veteran Hires (10.8 percent)

- Track Laborer: 17 Total Hires; 1 Veteran Hire (5.9 percent)

- Rail Conductor Trainee: 12 Total Hires, 2 Veteran Hires (16.7 percent)

Total: 262 Total Hires, 21 Veteran Hires (8 percent)

From left: SEPTA General Manager Joe Casey, Veteran and SEPTA Conductor Engineer Jordan Ranalli, and Ron Hopkins, SEPTA Assistant General Manager of Operations.

In addition to hiring veterans, SEPTA shows its support through participation in initiatives such as Operation Gratitude.