Virtual speaker series to profile professionals with careers in public policy

February 02, 2021

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State’s School of Public Policy is hosting a leadership series to spotlight professionals with careers in public policy. The “Profiles” series will welcome policymakers to take part in virtual discussions about their professional experience.

The first event will take place on Wednesday, Feb. 10, at 3 p.m. with special guest Joe Marie, senior vice president and managing director of WSP's Rail Transit Systems Group. WSP provides technical expertise and strategic advice to clients in the transportation and infrastructure; property and buildings; environment; industry; resources (including mining and oil and gas); and energy sectors, as well as offering project and program delivery and advisory services. He is also overseeing the East Side Access Project — the largest transportation infrastructure project currently being undertaken in North America.

Marie has 35 years of experience in the planning, design, construction, operations and maintenance of intermodal transportation systems worldwide. A former graduate assistant who earned his master’s in public administration from Penn State in 1986, Marie started his career working on education and transportation policy for the U.S. Congress. After traveling extensively in Europe, he developed an appreciation for its public transport networks and began a career in transportation and infrastructure development at the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority in Boston. Marie has served in prominent positions for several state and regional transportation systems overseeing more than $20 billion worth of subway, light rail and commuter rail transit projects in North America and Europe. 

“We’re excited to provide students and the broader community the opportunity to ask professionals about their experience, to learn how their position impacts policy and the policymaking process, and to offer advice for students in their early public policy careers. These profiles will show our current and prospective students how these individuals have leveraged their public policy training into successful careers,” said Catherine Baumgardner, director of professional development and student engagement in the School of Public Policy.

Each session will be held via Zoom and will consist of a brief interview followed by questions from the audience. Participants will have the option to ask questions during the live discussion or in advance of the presentation by submitting questions to

The next conversation in the “Profiles” series will be held on Wednesday, Mar. 10, at 3 p.m., with guest Natalie Krug, director of the Bureau of Budget Analysis in the Pennsylvania Governor’s Budget Office. Additional details on the series and information on joining the discussions via Zoom can be found on the School of Public Policy website.

  • Penn State alumnus, Joe Marie featured on School of Public Policy's Profiles Series

    Penn State alumnus, Joe Marie, will join the School of Public Policy's new virtual leadership development series, "Profiles," on Wed., Feb. 10.

    IMAGE: Joe Marie

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Last Updated February 04, 2021