Sunday, October 02, 2022

Motor Coach Industries (MCI), a coach manufacturer and a leader in electric mass mobility solutions, has announced the promotion of Josephine “Josie” Arrington to service center general manager GM in MCI's Blackwood, N.J., facility. The promotion makes Arrington the first woman Service Center GM across NFI’s extensive service center network. Arrington succeeds Tom Cole, who recently accepted a regional parts manager position.

NELA MCI newly promoted General Manager Josephine “Josie” Arrington

Arrington began her 15-year career with MCI in 2007 as a mechanic at the Blackwood facility. She quickly excelled though service advisory roles before being promoted to senior service provider. In her new position, Arrington will provide leadership to 20+ technicians, service advisors, and the parts team serving customers in the Northeast region.

“We are pleased to congratulate Josie on this deserved promotion. Through extensive service experience and superb customer-focused skills, Josie has been instrumental in serving MCI customers,” said MCI Vice President of Private Sector Sales Patricia Ziska. “Leveraging this experience, she will lead the operations of MCI's Blackwood Service Center and continue to provide our customers with exceptional service in the Northeast region.”

“Josie has exceptional qualifications, from people skills to highly specialized hands-on coach knowledge,” said MCI Director, Service Centers Steve Batho. “Time and again she has proven her dedication to our customers, always going the extra mile. Our service center managers are a critical level of management in MCI’s business, and Josie has built important relationships in one of our busiest service centers.”

Arrington says customer service remains her highest priority. “Tom made sure I learned every part of the business and prepared me for this position. One of the great things about MCI and New Flyer is our ability to network to get things done. Even when positions change, people stay, and the channels of communication are always there,” said Arrington. “We always try to get everyone in the shop to help our customers, no matter the status of our workload. Turnaround time on a coach isn’t like that on cars. Coaches are our customers’ livelihood, and our repairs have to be accurate and expeditious.”

Working within customers’ budgets, transparency in estimates and quotes are key to repeat business, Arrington said. “It’s more than maintenance. We have known our customers for years and understand their businesses.”

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The New England Livery Association (NELA) is holding their 2022 Golf Tournament on August 9 at the private Marlborough Country Club in Marlborough, Mass., one of New England’s top-rated courses. Open to a mix of novice and experienced golfers, the event offers attendees a great day on the links, lunch at the turn, followed by a delicious dinner. Special thanks to Platinum Sponsors Lancer Insurance and Research Underwriters, Gold Sponsor Cross Insurance, and Dinner Sponsor Chauffeur Driven. Other sponsorship opportunities are available; a full list can be seen here.

Discounted registration for the tournament is available through July 15. Golfer registration includes greens fee, cart, continental breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert:

  • Individual golfer registration fees: Discounted rate - $175 until July 15, standard rate - $185 effective July 16
  • Team (group of 4) golfer registration fees: Discounted rate - $700 until July 15, standard rate - $740 effective July 16

Attendees interested in dinner only are welcome to attend. A discounted rate of $75 is in effect until July 15, after which the price rises to $85.

Golfer and dinner registration closes Sunday, July 31 at 11:59 p.m. ET. Register with a credit card online or call the NELA office at 866.736.6352.

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US Travel Association Survey

More than half of large-company CEOs see negative consequences of reducing business travel, according to a new survey released by J.D. Power, Tourism Economics, and the US Travel Association (USTA). Key findings from the survey reveal executives agree that reducing business travel may represent short-term savings but will bring long-term negative impacts on revenue.

Despite agreement, more than two-thirds of executives expect their company will spend less on business travel over the next six months compared to the same period in 2019. Further, half of companies still have policies in place restricting business travel.

USTA Source:

Additionally, both business travelers and executives report “negative impacts related to reduced business travel.” Executives note that decreased business travel may represent short-term savings but damage sales in the long term (46 percent), which may harm overall financial stability and performance, according to the study. While frequency of trips is closing in on 2019 levels, spending is expected to be depressed throughout the end of 2022—primarily at conferences and trade shows as well as company meetings.

The Quarterly Business Travel Index projects a positive outlook for Q3, with an expected improvement to 84—up from 81 in Q2 (2019=100). The business conditions leading index, which measures the business environment for travel, shows moderate improvement, rising to 103 for Q3, up slightly from 102 in Q2.”

This near-term positive outlook also aligns with USTA’s latest forecast, which shows that domestic business travel will experience strong growth in 2022 before tapering off in following years.

However, there are headwinds on the horizon that threaten growth. In the coming quarters, companies will make travel decisions in a business environment that is adjusting to increased interest rates and high inflation, as well as labor shortages and supply chain challenges. Elevated risks of recession are anticipated to result in some caution among corporate decision-makers, which would stifle business travel spending by some companies. Additionally, with more businesses setting aggressive goals to reduce their carbon footprint, companies may choose to reduce business travel to achieve net zero emissions. 

Click here to view the results of the survey.