February 17, 2023


ATLANTA – The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) recognizes employees who broke racial barriers as part of Black History Month, including the Authority’s first Black bus operators, Black bus supervisor, and Black executive. The employees are featured at rail stations and bus stops throughout the

MARTA system and on MARTA’s social media channels.

Among the Black transit pioneers recognized for their roles and work at MARTA:

  • Charles Frank Reeves, MARTA’s first Black bus supervisor who was among the first employees hired at Atlanta Transit, which would become MARTA in 1971.
  • Gail Winfrey Blackmon, a receptionist and secretary, who was also one of the original 13 employees.
  • Morris Dillard, an original employee and director of community relations who would go on to become one of MARTA’s first Black executives. Mr. Dillard was also instrumental in the passing of the first MARTA referendum in 1971.
  • Coy Dumas, Jr., a bus operator who recently celebrated 50 years at MARTA.
  • MARTA’s first Black bus operators who provided an essential service despite the racism they encountered daily.

“MARTA would not exist if not for the work, sacrifice and dedication of these Black transit pioneers,” said MARTA General Manager and CEO Collie Greenwood. “Because of the barriers they broke, MARTA is now a proud majority-minority employer, with Black employees making up most of our workforce from the frontline to the board room. Black history is American history and it is most certainly public transit history.”

The recognition of Black employees will run through Black History Month and become an ongoing series next February.

Click here to view Black History Month 2023 featured employees


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