Genesee & Wyoming has announced the appointment of Gary R. Long as Chief Executive Officer of its UK/Europe operating region, which is led by the UK’s Freightliner. He succeeds Russell Mears, who will transition to the role of Senior Advisor in the third quarter of 2017.
Long was President and CEO of the North American freight railroad holding company OmniTRAX, Inc., prior to joining G&W in 2013. He has nearly 35 years of transportation industry experience, including roles related to rail, motor carrier, port, maritime and intermodal terminals, and currently heads one of G&W’s U.S. operating regions.
“Gary’s strong operational, commercial and management background in the rail, trucking and maritime industries make him particularly well suited to lead G&W’s UK/Europe businesses,” says Jack Hellmann, G&W Chairman, President and CEO.
Mears joined Freightliner, now the UK’s largest rail maritime intermodal operator and second-largest rail freight company, in 1993 and was a member of the management team behind its successful privatization in 1996. He served nine years as Chief Financial Officer at Freightliner and became its CEO in 2013, setting the strategic direction of the business including diversification into the UK heavy haul and maintenance markets, expansion into Mainland Europe, Australia and Saudi Arabia, and its 2015 acquisition by G&W. Since then, he has served as CEO of G&W’s UK/Europe Region, which includes Freightliner and the recently acquired Pentalver Transport Limited in the UK, as well as Continental European companies ERS Railways, Freightliner DE, Freightliner PL and Rotterdam Rail Feeding.
“Russell’s contributions over the past 24 years have been integral to Freightliner’s success,” Hellmann says. “Most importantly, his leadership and integrity have been exemplary not only at Freightliner but within the UK rail industry, and we look forward to continuing to benefit from his guidance in his new role.”
G&W is unique in the rail industry, owning or leasing more than 120 freight railroads organized in 10 locally managed operating regions with 8,000 employees serving 3,000 customers.
G&W’s eight North American regions serve 41 U.S. states and four Canadian provinces and include 115 short line and regional freight railroads with more than 13,000 track-miles.
G&W’s Australia Region provides rail freight service in New South Wales, the Northern Territory and South Australia and operates the 1,400-mile Tarcoola-to-Darwin rail line. The Australia Region is 51.1% owned by G&W and 48.9% owned by a consortium of funds and clients managed by Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets.
G&W’s UK/Europe Region is the UK’s largest intermodal rail freight and container services provider, as well as its second-largest rail freight operator overall, and also provides regional rail services in Continental Europe.