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TTC unveils customer service panel

Diverse group includes executives from WestJet and Telus, a student and Red Juice Media CEO Julie Tyios, who won the commission’s Twitter contest

By Anna Mehler Papeny

The Toronto Transit Commission has unveiled the blue-ribbon collection of individuals it hopes will burnish the beleaguered reputation of its customer service.

The nine panelists include the head of Société de Transport de Montreal, Yves Devin; WestJet vice-president Tyson Matheson; Telus manager Sue Motahedin; Spacing Magazine publisher and founder Matthew Blackett; Ryerson University marketing professor Roy Morley; South Asian Women’s Centre executive director Kripa Sekhar and York Federation of Students President Krisna Saravanamuttu.

A well-worded tweet got Julie Tyios on to the panel.

“I excel in the art of getting things done. Communications and social media are my forte. Public transit is my ride,” she posted in reply to the transit commission’s call for pitches from plugged-in commuters.

The CEO of Red Juice Media goes to work via the Queen Street streetcar, but uses the subway for just about everything else.

She says she has something to add when it comes to giving the TTC a customer-service makeover.

All the panelists identified themselves as regular users of the Red Rocket, which has been the centre of a commuter maelstrom after a photo of a fare collector asleep in his booth sparked complaints from bitter transit users.

The panel is one of many recommendations in a customer-service report that went before the transit commission last month. Other recommendations included more training and “secret shoppers” to monitor customer service.