Monday, October 18, 2010

Riders Talk About Transit’s Benefits

By Karen Will Johnson,
Community Transit Creative Manager

She looked me straight in the eye and said, “If Community Transit doesn’t go there, then neither do I.”

I couldn’t have scripted it any better.

Her simple statement may have been my first unsolicited storytelling testimonial.  It was Thursday,
July 31, 2007 at a ribbon-cutting event for The Double Tall, our double decker bus. She was wearing a festive sunhat and white gloves. The elegant senior who never learned to drive and has used public transit for her entire life expressed in her own words what Community Transit meant to her.  She was sharing her story.

Storytelling is society’s way of communicating between people. The histories, the hopes, the personal details. We know that people’s lives are affected by what we do, and we’ve asked them to share their stories, in their own words. Unscripted. Unrehearsed. Unaltered.

Storytelling testimonial videos are now an ongoing project at Community Transit. We find storytellers at outreach events, transit centers and at our own children’s birthday parties. They are your co-workers and your neighbors. They wear festive sunhats and white gloves. They have a connection to Community Transit in common, but their stories are as varied and compelling as they are.

And in the process, we’re discovering not only our riders’ stories, but those of business and community leaders whose companies and organizations are enhanced by the services Community Transit provides.

You can hear their stories too. Visit our Storytelling Testimonial page on our website at

On a larger scale, the American Public Transit Association  has just launched their own initiative, Telling Our Story/The Wall, which captures video testimonials from hundreds of people across the country who benefit from public transit. Watching those videos reminded me how grateful I am to work for an industry that performs the important job of connecting people and building communities. 

I imagine there are compelling stories out there just waiting to be shared. If you or someone you know uses Community Transit local or commuter service and would like to tell your story on camera, we’d like to hear from you. Email and tell us how Community Transit helps you connect with work, friends and family. Do you ride public transit for the cost savings or for environmental reasons?  Do you benefit from more personal time or the pleasure of a relaxing commute?

Let us hear from you. Because telling your story is the best way to tell our own.

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