Community Transit CEO announces he will retire

Emmett Heath has led the transit agency for six years after being hired from within.

Emmett Heath (Community Transit)

Emmett Heath (Community Transit)

EVERETT — Emmett Heath, the CEO for Community Transit, announced Thursday he will retire later this year.

Heath has served as CEO for Community Transit for six years and spent nine years as director of administration before that. He’s had a long career in public service in the Puget Sound region, holding executive leadership positions at both King County Metro and the Snohomish County PUD before coming to Community Transit in 2005.

He shared his intentions with the Community Transit Board of Directors Thursday, saying he looks forward to spending more time with his family and grandchildren.

Heath, who had been considering retirement since late last year, put his plans on hold to help lead the agency through the initial emergency phases of the COVID-19 pandemic. The transit board has asked that he continue to serve as CEO until a successor is selected, likely late this year.

“It has been an incredible honor to work with Emmett for many years,” said Marysville Mayor Jon Nehring, who serves as Community Transit’s Board chairman. “He has led the agency with expertise, energy, passion and a true service-oriented commitment to the community and employees. He will not be easy to replace but we thank him for his service and wish him the best for this new chapter in his life.”

“I’m very proud of this agency and the many amazing co-workers I have met during my 15-year career here,” said Heath in a message to employees Thursday. “We have been resilient in the face of adversity, and we always rebound to provide better and better services for our customers. We have accomplished a great deal together and have had a lot of fun times along the way.”

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