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All Aboard Ohio, a leading advocacy organization for passenger rail transportation, proudly announces the appointment of John Esterly as its new Executive Director. With a distinguished background in the railroad transportation industry and a passion for community service, Esterly brings a wealth of experience and expertise to his new role.

John has been a member of the AAO Board of Directors since November 2023, serving as a spokesperson during the Corridor ID Program Round One announcement and filling an integral role in AAO’s statewide Whistle Stop Tour. 

In addition to his work with All Aboard Ohio, Esterly works as a locomotive engineer and is a dedicated member of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET) Division 34 in Columbus, Ohio. He began his railroad career in 2011, earning promotion to locomotive engineer in 2015. Esterly's commitment to his profession and his fellow colleagues led him to actively engage in union leadership roles within the BLET, where he served in various capacities, including Trainmen’s Local Chairman and Ohio State Legislative Board Chairman.

Outside of his contributions to the railroad industry, Esterly is an entrepreneur and community advocate. He is the owner of Rare Buzz Effects, Ltd., a company specializing in the design and manufacture of electronic musical effects. Furthermore, Esterly serves as the Executive Director of the Pumpkin Pedaler Foundation, Inc., a 501(c)(3) public charity dedicated to benefiting the autism community of Central Ohio through annual bicycle tours and arts-related experiences.

Esterly holds a Master of Science in Computer Science from Franklin University, where he specialized in machine learning and artificial intelligence, cyber security, and cryptography. He also earned a Bachelor of Arts in Marketing from Franklin University, with a focus on Internet and social media marketing.

In his new role as Executive Director of All Aboard Ohio, Esterly will leverage his diverse background and expertise to advance the organization's mission of promoting and improving rail transportation across the state. He will work closely with stakeholders, policymakers, and the community to advocate for safe, efficient, and sustainable rail systems that benefit all Ohioans.

"We are thrilled to welcome John Esterly as the new Executive Director of All Aboard Ohio," said Mitch Radakovich, Chair of the Board of Directors. "His extensive experience in the railroad industry, combined with his passion for community service and advocacy, make him the ideal leader to guide our organization into the future."

Esterly expressed his enthusiasm for his new role, stating, "I am honored to join the team at All Aboard Ohio and look forward to working tirelessly to promote the importance of rail transportation and advocate for the needs of passengers across the state. Together, we can build a stronger, more connected Ohio."

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