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Peter Mannella to Receive 'Distinguished Service Award'

from NAPT

Peter F. Mannella, the now retired long-time Executive Director of the New York Association for Pupil Transportation (NYAPT), has been selected to receive the 2019 NAPT® Distinguished Service Award.

Mannella, who served as a Regional Director on the NAPT® Board from 2007 to 2016, chaired NAPT® committees on Elections (2007 - 2010), Professional Growth (2010 to 2016) and Public Policy (2004 to present). Under his leadership, the Public Policy committee developed and publicly articulated 2 tenets that have become standard industry parlance: first, school bus transportation is INTEGRAL to education, a critical component in every successful educational enterprise, and NOT an ANCILLARY service; and, second, the yellow school bus is the safest, most economical, most energy-responsive and most environmentally-friendly way to transport our children to and from school each day. While each of these concepts seems so obvious now, when the Public Policy Committee first expressed them in writing and began to talk about them in the early 2000's, it was groundbreaking.

As Chair of NAPT's® Public Policy Committee, Mannella has appeared before the Congress and state and federal agencies on a broad array of issues, most recently leading the charge to reduce the illegal passing of stopped school buses. The annual survey of school bus drivers that he initiated at NYAPT was among the first in the nation and is now in its 12th year. He has done numerous press conferences and media events to highlight the extent and serious nature of this problem, each time emphasizing both the state and national statistics to illustrate and explain the issues and potential solutions.

Mannella was also among the first people in school transportation to publicly state that bullying has no place on the school bus and school districts should have clear and well-considered policies for handling such events. His passion for this issue led NYAPT to create a training program for school bus drivers and aides that is a benchmark for bullying prevention nationwide.

NAPT will honor Mannella and the other winners of NAPT® awards on Monday, November 4th at 11:00 AM in Columbus, OH. Please join us in saying "Thank you" and "Congratulations" to Peter.

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