For Immediate Release

Contact: Mike Charbonneau, 919-485-7413

Research Triangle Park, NC (Aug. 7, 2017) – A 25-year transit veteran has been hired as the next general manager at GoDurham, an agency that last fiscal year provided nearly 7 million rides over 24 routes in a growing city of nearly 300,000 residents.

Doug Middleton, former executive director of maintenance for Pierce Transit in Tacoma, Washington, joins the GoDurham team today. Sean Smith, the former general manager, resigned in November. Finance Director Tonya Dupree has been serving as interim general manager.

At GoDurham, Middleton will manage the agency’s operational and fiscal activities while supervising the assistant general manager, the finance director, the maintenance director, the operations manager and the safety manager.

“This is a perfect opportunity at the perfect size operation I wanted to oversee,” Middleton said. “I’ve been in larger organizations most of my time, and this position has all of the components that will suit me at an executive level. Looking at GoDurham, there’s a unique opportunity there. It’s a great operation providing really good service. Where there are opportunities to provide better service, we’ll root that out.”

Middleton has worked previously at Los Angeles Metro and Orange County Transportation Authority in California.

“He definitely stood out among all of the candidates,” said Laurie Barrett, director of transit partnerships at GoTriangle, which manages GoDurham under contract with the city. “He was the most well-rounded, having worked as a bus operator, in maintenance and with a strong training background. His personality in general stood out. He was high on customer service and training. He hit all the marks.”

Middleton said that he is passionate about public transit and that his mantra is safety, courtesy and reliability.

“You have to have the core components working well to start with,” he said. “If you have that, you can add other things like new technologies on top.”

Getting to work with people and leading teams to desired objectives are some of the reasons he loves being a manager.

“I am very, very communicative,” he said. “I have a very open style of management and leadership, although I’m also very demanding and believe in accountability on all levels. I just hope people are ready to rock and roll, are ready to roll up their sleeves and work with me. I don’t like to stand still.”

Middleton received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from California Baptist University, Riverside, and a master’s in public administration from California State University, Long Beach.

“I’m just looking forward to getting to know the community, to getting out and talking with people,” he said. “That’s going to be a lot of fun, to spend time understanding what they need from the system, what they think could be better. I’m really looking forward to getting that information and seeing what we can do from a creative standpoint as well as resource standpoint to create the best possible service for the Durham community.”

Find more information about GoDurham at

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