Gunn, right, will no doubt be making this gesture a lot during his stint advising WMATA.
Update: Metro says they will be paying Gunn $20,000
The Washington Post is reporting that Metro will be "contracting" with transit "guru" David L. Gunn, once a GM here in the '90s. The compensation amount was not disclosed in the article.
According to Metro Board member Mortimer Downey, one of the new federal members of the Board, "It's like calling in a specialist: 'Give the system a physical, and tell us what you think.' "
We thought Downey would be able to do that. He's new, he's got a long transit background. Why bring in this guy?
Gunn has an impressive resume (though he was fired by ... Amtrak!) and, according to the piece, "does not use e-mail or own a cellphone or computer, has a back-to-basics management style that emphasizes setting clear goals and empowering employees, down to supervisors and foremen, to solve problems themselves"
Sounds, uh, great, but we can't help but think this move is nothing but another in a long line of Metro gimmicks. Remember those high-priced communications consultants? They really earned their keep.
Yet most importantly, how many ways does Metro need to hear that they suck? Just pick up the paper, watch the news, read the blogs and the tweets. For crying out loud, just ride the damn thing.
Is Gunn supposed to deliver, at last, that sobering slap to the face that will snap Metro out if its malaise? One would have thought June 22 would have done that.
A little less conversation, please, and a little more action.
But just in case all of the deaths, accidents, broken down trains, delays and entitled employees don't paint a vivid enough picture of what is wrong with Metro for Gunn, why don't you tell him what you think.