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Citizens for Improved Transit (CFIT) has incorporated the Citizens for Improved Transit Foundation, a Nebraska nonprofit corporation, to position itself to receive grant money.

The CFIT Foundation held its first meeting Jan. 24 with a nine-member board of directors: Bennie Shobe, member, Lincoln City Council; the Rev. Kirstie Engel, associate minister for outreach, St. Paul United Methodist Church; Maggie Montoya, development manager, St. Monica's Behavioral Health Services for Women; Richard Schmeling, president, CFIT; Gretchen Baker, social worker, Lincoln Southeast High School; Jackie Miller, office director, Nebraska Vocational Rehabilitation Services; Ralph Hayden, vice president, CFIT, and treasurer, ProRail Nebraska; Joe Kotopka, branch manager, Union Bank & Trust, 4800 Normal Blvd.; and W. Don Nelson, member of CFIT and veteran of many boards and studies.

Newly elected officers are Schmeling, president; Miller, vice president; Montoya, secretary; and Kotopka, treasurer.

The CFIT Foundation will also have representatives from a variety of social service organizations and community centers, and other interested citizens.

The new foundation will not engage in lobbying or political activity in order to qualify as a 501(c)(3) organization, donations to which can be tax-deductible. The original CFIT will continue actively advocate for increased and better StarTran bus service and will address service issues and concerns raised by the public with StarTran management.

Direct any questions to Schmeling at 402-853-9537.

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