Associate Administrator for Research, Demonstration and Innovation
Karina Ricks joined the Federal Transit Administration in September 2021 as the Associate Administrator for Research, Demonstration and Innovation (TRI). In this capacity, Karina oversees a range of activities including mobility innovation, safety and testing, and bringing research into practice. Karina is driven to achieve just, sustainable and vital mobility that improves quality of life and economic prosperity for all people and communities.
Prior to joining FTA, Karina established and directed the City of Pittsburgh’s Department of Mobility and Infrastructure where she catalyzed an ambitious integrated Mobility as a Service (MaaS) and Universal Basic Mobility (UBM) program, modernized Steel City’s legacy infrastructure, collaborated with smart and autonomous technology innovators, and implemented an array of safety initiatives and multimodal network improvements. Her past experience includes strategic mobility consulting both nationally and internationally, and experience in land use and economic development, democracy initiatives, and environmental preservation. Karina returns to federal service many years after beginning her career as a Peace Corps Volunteer and, later, Presidential Management Fellow.
Karina holds a Master’s of City and Regional Planning from Cornell University and a Bachelor of Arts from the James Madison College of Michigan State University. She is a Fulbright Scholar and the proud mother of two.