With industry experience that averages more than 25 years, Student Transportation of America's management team brings an unparalleled level of knowledge and operational expertise to the school districts we serve. The team has proven itself by successfully growing the business through a strategic and disciplined acquisition, bid and conversion program. STA & STC leaders are poised to seize additional opportunities and continue to grow the business.
Chief Executive Officer
Patrick Vaughan, Chief Executive Officer of Student Transportation of America, has over 40 years of experience in the transportation industry with the most recent 28 years devoted to student transportation and passenger safety. In 1977, Mr. Vaughan began his career in transportation & logistics with St. Johnsbury Trucking Company, a less-than-truckload carrier owned by Sun Oil Corporation. In 1988, Mr. Vaughan joined the Connecticut based retail firm of Ames Department Stores where he was Vice President of Transportation & Logistics. In 1991, Mr. Vaughan joined Laidlaw Transit Inc. as Director of Operations and was promoted in 1996 to the position of Senior Vice President. Upon the acquisition of Laidlaw Transit Inc., by First Group in 2007, Mr. Vaughan was appointed to the role of Chief Operating Officer and charged with the effective integration of the two largest student transportation providers in the industry. In 2017, he was named the President of STA's newly formed School Transportation Group. Mr. Vaughan has been awarded the National School Transportation Association’s Golden Merit Award for his dedication and commitment to the school bus industry, and is a graduate of Suffolk University, with a B.S. in Business Administration. He is a past member of the Board of Directors of National School Transportation Association.
Patrick J. Walker
Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer
Patrick J. Walker, the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of the Company, has over 25 years of financial management experience. Mr. Walker began his career as an accountant with the Philadelphia CPA firm of Tait, Weller and Baker, followed by the New York firm of McGladrey & Pullen. Between 1989 and 1992, Mr. Walker was employed with the global food products conglomerate TLC Beatrice International Holdings, Inc., as Manager of Accounting and Financial Reporting. In 1992, Mr. Walker joined Six Flags Entertainment Corporation, the largest regional operator of theme parks in the United States, as Corporate Controller, before being promoted to Vice President of Finance in 1998. From 1999 to 2001, Mr. Walker served as Chief Financial Officer of two portfolio companies of Indigo Capital, a private equity firm. Prior to his appointment at the Company, Mr. Walker was a consultant to the Chief Financial Officer of H.J. Heinz Company. Mr. Walker became Chief Financial Officer of the Company in November 2002. Mr. Walker is a graduate of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and a Member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Institute of Management Accountants.
Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer
John DiMaiolo, the Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer of the Company, has over 35 years of financial management experience with 15 of those years within the student passenger transportation industry. Mr. DiMaiolo began his career as an accountant for Cadence Industries in 1979. In 1982, Mr. DiMaiolo joined Twin County Grocers Inc., a wholesale food distribution company, holding various positions over the next 12 years including Financial Accounting Manager, Manager of Budgeting and Financial Systems, and Division Controller. In 1995, Mr. DiMaiolo joined New Jersey Press Inc., a multimedia news provider in central New Jersey as Corporate Controller. From 1998 to 2000, Mr. DiMaiolo served as Vice President and Corporate Controller for Journal Register Company. Before joining Student Transportation of America, Mr. DiMaiolo was Director of Finance for Laidlaw Transit Inc.'s Eastern Business Group for 8 years. Mr. DiMaiolo is a graduate of Duke University and earned a Master in Business Administration from Seton Hall University. He is a Member of the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants and the American Institute of Public Accountants.
Vice President of Corporate Finance
Paula Altieri, the Vice President and Corporate Controller at Student Transportation of America, has over 25 years of financial management experience with 15 of those years within the student passenger transportation industry. Altieri began her career as an accountant in the financial services industry. Before joining Student Transportation of America in 2005, she spent 4 years as a Regional Finance Manager at Laidlaw Transit Inc. and was CFO of Liberty Helicopters Inc. from 2000 to 2005. Altieri is a graduate of Florida Atlantic University and earned a Master in Business Administration from Fairleigh Dickinson University. She is a Certified Public Accountant and a member of the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants and the American Institute of Public Accountants.
Chief Operating Officer, School Transportation Group
Gene Kowalczewski, Senior Vice President of the Company's Eastern Business Group, has over 25 years of experience in the student transportation industry, focusing on operational safety. Kowalczewski joined Laidlaw Transit Inc. in 1991 as Area Controller. After being named Director of Operations and Business Development in 1995, he became responsible for all acquisitions in the Northeast region. In 2000, Kowalczewski was appointed Senior Vice President of Operations. Kowalczewski also used his experience to provide transportation consulting services within the industry before joining Student Transportation of America in 2009 as Director of Operations. In 2011, Kowalczewski was selected as Senior Vice President of Operations for Student Transportation of America's Northeast region, and in 2019 was named Chief Operating Office of STA’s North American School Bus Operations. He has been awarded recognition by the New York School Bus Contractors Association in 2008 and the National Association for Pupil Transportation in 2001 for his industry service. Kowalczewski serves on the Board of Directors for New York School Bus Contractors, Aurora Waldorf School, Academy of Aurora, and is active in his community's Boys and Girls Club.
Christopher J. Harwood
President, Student Transportation of Canada
Christopher J. Harwood, President of Student Transportation of America's Canadian operating subsidiary, has 25 years of experience in the passenger transportation industry. From 1989 to 1997, he was employed by Laidlaw Passenger Services and its subsidiary, American Medical Response. He held various positions at Laidlaw, including Acquisition Analyst, Manager of Financial Planning Analysis and Director of Acquisitions. Harwood joined Student Transportation of America as Vice President of Acquisitions and was named Corporate Vice President of Finance in 1999. He is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ontario, received an Honors Business Administration degree from the University of Western Ontario, and is on the board of the Ontario School Bus Association.
Senior Vice President, Central Business Group
Kirk Wilkie, the Senior Vice President of the Company’s Central Business Group, has 25 years of transportation and leadership experience. As the Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for Durham School Services, he led the annual operating plan development and monitored all aspects of business performance for more than $500 Million in revenue. Mr. Wilkie served as President of MV Transportation’s East Region while also serving as President of MV Student Transportation, overseeing an 18-state territory. More recently, Mr. Wilkie served as Senior Vice President of Operations for Petermann, overseeing all operational aspects of their business in several states prior to joining STA in his current position where he oversees a growing region focused on providing the safest transportation for its passengers.