Commuters wait for the Orange line on Monday, June 6, 2016 in Fairfax, VA. Overcrowding on platforms and extended delays are expected due to the Metro SafeTrack project. (Photo by Amanda Voisard for The Washington Post)

Less than three weeks after he fired 20 managers in a shakeup at the top ranks of the troubled transit agency, Metro General Manager Paul J. Wiedefeld has added two new people to his team.

In a memo to staff Tuesday, Wiedefeld announced the hiring of John Kuo, as chief of Internal Business Operations.

 As part of his job, Kuo will oversee Human Resources, Information Technology, Procurement and Labor Relations at the transit agency. He will report directly to Wiedefeld and be paid a base salary of $214,000. He starts work June 20.


John Kuo, currently associate administrator for administration at the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, will become chief of Internal Business Operations at Metro. (Photo courtesy of the FMCSA)

Kuo currently is associate administrator for administration at the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, an agency within the U.S. Department of Transportation.

In his memo to staff, Wiedefeld praised Kuo’s ability to work in “challenging transportation environments.”

Wrote Wiedefeld:

John’s career spans more than three decades in challenging transportation environments managing complex regulatory, administrative, operational, research and regulations development, organizational development, procurement and contracting issues. He also has extensive experience in policy formulation, and fiscal, budget and personnel management.

During his tenure as Administrator and Chief Executive of the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration, John was credited with streamlining the MVA’s organizational structure, increasing operational efficiency, and reducing staff while improving overall customer satisfaction. John previously served as the Maryland Governor’s Highway Safety Representative and successfully reversed the crash statistical trend and achieved the lowest crash fatality rate in the State of Maryland in over 40 years.

Kuo has deep Maryland roots. According to his Linkedin profile, he is a graduate of Winston Churchill High School in Potomac, Md., has a degree in civil engineering from the University of Maryland. From 2006 to 2014, he was Chief Executive Officer at the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration.

Last week, Wiedefeld also announced he had hired Laura Mason, a former Bechtel executive, to manage the Safe Track rebuilding program. Mason will be responsible for overseeing all aspects of the year-long program that began over the weekend and will continue through March.

Most recently, Mason was a business development manager for North America Public Infrastructure based in Bechtel’s Reston office. She also spent three years working for the team that built the first phase of the Silver Line rail project, which opened in July 2014. Mason has an electrical/biomedical engineering degree from Duke University and a masters in Business Administration from Stanford University. She starts work June 13 and will be paid a base salary of $165,000.

“Laura joins us with more than a decade of public-private project delivery experience with Bechtel,” Metro spokesman Dan Stessel said via email. “She has led teams through complex infrastructure projects including the construction of an event center to host the African Union Summit in Gabon.”