MARTA CEO Jeffrey Parker has died at age 55

The transit agency confirmed the death on Saturday morning

Jeffrey Parker CEO MARTA
MARTA CEO Jeffrey Parker

Photograph courtesy of MARTA

This morning, MARTA announced that its CEO and General Manager Jeffrey Parker died Friday night at age 55. The transit agency confirmed that Parker died by suicide. MARTA Board of Directors Chairwoman Rita Scott released this statement on Parker’s death:

The MARTA Board of Directors grieves the shocking death of our GM/CEO Jeff Parker who has died by suicide. He was an outstanding leader and steward of MARTA whose passing leaves us all heartbroken.

As Chairwoman and on behalf of my fellow MARTA board members, we are devastated at this loss as we valued Jeff’s leadership and looked forward to him bringing his vision for transit to fruition. The entire metro Atlanta region owes him a debt of gratitude for his transformational efforts and we will not stop working to build on the foundation he created. 

As we struggle to understand the complexity of this tragedy, we grieve with and for his wife Erin, his daughters and all of Jeff’s family and friends as well as his MARTA family. As we continue to grieve, we want you to know that suicide is preventable and help is available to you.

For access to services and immediate crisis help, call the Georgia Crisis & Access Line (GCAL) at 1-800-715-4225, available 24/7.

Parker became MARTA’s CEO and GM in 2018 and lead the transit agency through the pandemic, the 2019 Super Bowl, and was working on the system’s biggest expansion plan since its founding, which he called a “moonshot for transit.” Earlier this week, Parker lead the 2022 State of MARTA address, where, among other announcements, he revealed MARTA’s plans for brand new rail trains with sleek, minimalist exteriors and upgraded interiors.

Parker had more than 30 years of experience in both public and private transportation and was vice president of the Georgia/Alabama/Tennessee District of HNTB, an architecture and engineering consulting firm, before becoming MARTA CEO.

MARTA is holding special board meeting today to name an interim CEO. Below, we’ve gathered what those on social media are saying about Parker’s death.

If you or someone you know is having thoughts of suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. You can also call the Georgia Crisis and Access Line at 1-800-715-4225. Both are staffed 24/7. You can also contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741.