Meet The Next Generation

Hosted by AREMA and Committee 24 – Education & Training
The Meet The Next Generation Event has been extremely successful in years past and continues to grow each year with more attendees and companies hosting tables at the networking reception. We hope to make the 14th Annual Event even better!

This Event will provide:

  • Prospective employees and students the opportunity to learn about the railway industry and meet industry representatives.
  • Industry representatives a chance to establish relations with potential employees.

Schedule - Monday, September 23

2:00 – 3:00 PM
Panel Discussion

Five pre-selected panelists from various areas of the railway industry, with various years of experience will present the types of projects that they have worked on in their job and answer questions (for prospective railroaders).

  • Welcome by AREMA President, James K. Kessler, PE
  • Introduction of Panel Members
  • Presentations 
  • Q&A
3:00 – 5:00 PM 
Networking Reception

Two hour Networking Reception to welcome prospective railroaders, student participants and those who are new to the industry. This event is a great opportunity to network with industry representatives!


Stephen Berish
Field Engineer/ Acting General Manager – Southern Division
ACME Construction Co., Inc.

Steve Berish currently serves as a Field Engineer and Acting General Manager for Acme Construction Co., Inc.’s Southern Division in Florence, SC. Acme Construction is a third-generation family owned railroad construction contractor based out of Cleveland, OH, and Steve has been with the company on a part-time basis since 2013 and full-time since 2017. Steve graduated from the University of Toledo with a B.S. in Civil Engineering where he was also a founder and president of the AREMA Student Chapter. In late 2017, he helped oversee the acquisition of a competitor in Florence, SC. He now works with several existing accounts of both companies, has acquired additional large industrial and shortline railroad customers, and serves as a project manager in the field.
John Bobzien, PE
Project Manager/Civil Engineer

John Bobzien currently serves as a Project Manager for TKDA, a full-service engineering, architecture and planning firm headquartered in St. Paul, Minnesota. John has worked for TKDA in the Rail Division for over seven years on a variety of railroad infrastructure projects. As a Project Manager, he oversees survey, design, and construction management services for new track, intermodal facilities, auto facilities, bridge structures, access roads, public and private road crossings, access roads, drainage culverts, and permitting. John works on a daily basis with both Class 1 and industrial railroad clients, responding to everyday operational maintenance needs and long-term capital improvement plans. He also frequently serves as a facilitator between railroads and public agencies, primarily focusing on the construction of overpass and underpass structures. John graduated from the University of Minnesota with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering.
Katelyn Krysiak
Bridge Supervisor
CSX Transportation

Katelyn Krysiak is a Bridge Supervisor for CSX Transportation with nearly 7 years of field experience in bridge inspection, construction, design and maintenance. She specializes in Structural Civil Engineering and is continually seeking ways to broaden her scope of expertise in the field by taking advantage of educational opportunities that come before her. Kate is a strong believer in networking, and developing strong relationships is at the foundation of everything she does, both personally and professionally. When she is not railroading, Kate can be found outside enjoying a round of golf. 
James “J.J.” Lund, Jr., MBA
General Manager
LJA Railroad Construction, Inc.

James “J.J.” Lund Jr. is currently the General Manager of LJA Railroad Construction, a subsidiary of LJA Engineering, where he is responsible for the creation and execution of the strategic, marketing, operations, and safe-work plans for the company. He has been trained and mentored by three managers with a combined 90+ years of railroad construction and operations experience. J.J. graduated from Texas A&M University with an MBA and has 8+ years of project management and estimating experience in both heavy civil and railroad construction primarily in the private industrial sector. LJA Railroad Construction is currently in the completion phase of an 850 car yard in Beaumont, TX and has broken ground on a 1000 car yard in the greater Houston area.
Martita Mullen, PE
Senior Manager Design and Construction
Canadian National Railway Company

Martita Mullen is Senior Manager Design and Construction, she is responsible for construction and infrastructure improvement projects in the US. She earned her bachelor's degree in civil engineering at Northwestern University and a master's in civil engineering at Tufts University.  She is a PE in Tennessee and has her PMP. Mullen worked for Illinois Central Railroad as a track designer and assistant track supervisor.  After graduate school, she returned to railroading as a management trainee at CN, which acquired Illinois Central in 1999. Since then, she has managed projects, including construction of the CN intermodal terminal and Harrison Yard in Memphis, Tenn., and CN infrastructure upgrades for the GO Transit expansion in Toronto. Martita has also worked in Track Standards and Track Maintenance during her 19 year railroading career.‎  


To become a Meet the Next Generation Sponsor contact Lindsay McNicholas.