Lisberg, City & State editor, named chief MTA spokesmanBy
On Friday, Jeremy Soffin served his final day as Director of Media Relations for the MTA, and today, MTA Chairman Joe Lhota named Adam Lisberg as the new Director of External Communications. Lisberg, currently the editor of City & State and once the City Hall bureau chief of The Daily News’, will head up press office while setting the “communications agenda” for the MTA. He will serve as Lhota’s chief spokesperson as well.
“Adam is an award-winning journalist who is joining us at an exciting time as we attempt to change both the operation and the image of the MTA. His talents and experience will be instrumental in shaping our message as we move forward,” Lhota said in a statement.
Lisberg, a current Brooklynite with Chicago roots, has covered mass transit and the MTA for a good portion of his career. After all, state and city politics and our massive transit agency are often intertwined, not always for the better. With, as Politicker NY notes, a salary of $150,000 coming his way, Lisberg is saying all the right things.
“I’m excited to join an agency that plays such a crucial role in the New York City region, and to help the MTA deliver its message to the millions of people it serves across a wide range of media,” he said. “Mass transit is the lifeblood of New York City and the surrounding counties. As the MTA tackles enormous construction projects at a time of financial strain, I’m looking forward to helping the agency explain its challenges and its achievements to the millions of people who rely on it.”
Lisberg’s immediate challenge is to overcome both a skeptical public and media prone to superficial transit coverage as he shapes and reshapes the MTA’s image. He should also serve as a set of ears for the agency with his pulse to the ground. It can’t just be about telling about change; it must be about showing a response as well.
“The MTA has a good story to tell and I see my role there as telling it,” he said to Capital New York. “I know that I’m now going to be representing the views of an organization as opposed to purely being a critic from the outside, but I’m doing it for a cause and an organization I believe in, which makes it a lot easier.”
Lisberg begins in his role on March 30, and I’m sure you’ll see his name often on these pages. In the meantime, get acquainted with him via his Twitter account.