Patriot Rail Names Freight and Logistics Leader Brandy D. Christian as CEO

Brandy D. Christian (Courtesy Patriot Rail Company)

JACKSONVILLE, Florida — Patriot Rail Company has appointed goods movement and rail transport leader Brandy D. Christian as the firm’s next chief executive officer.

Christian will join Patriot Rail on June 17 and, after a brief transition period, will succeed John E. Fenton, who is retiring after 12 years.

“I’m thrilled to join Patriot Rail, a stellar industry pacesetter committed to safety excellence, teamwork, and delivering value for customers,” Christian said. “Patriot Rail has an admirable culture of employee-first collaboration. I look forward to working with the team to build on their achievements and guide Patriot’s continued growth as a freight logistics and supply chain leader and the partner of choice for rail-focused strategic infrastructure investment.”

Christian brings more than 25 years of freight transport, infrastructure development, and rail sector experience to Patriot Rail. Before joining Jacksonville, Florida-based Patriot Rail, Christian served as president and CEO of the Port of New Orleans, the nation’s 10th largest port by general cargo tonnage, and CEO of the New Orleans Public Belt Railroad.

“Brandy is an exceptional global supply chain and freight rail executive with the vision, perspective and expertise to lead Patriot Rail in its accelerating growth and development,” Deb Butler, Patriot Rail board chair, said. “We are grateful to John for his exemplary contributions in guiding the company through significant expansion for more than a decade, establishing an unparalleled culture of safety and employees first while delivering top customer service and value.”

Since Igneo Infrastructure Partners acquired Patriot Rail in 2019, the company has grown organically and through acquisitions, from 13 to 31 railroads, including Salt Lake Garfield & Western Railway in 2021 and Pioneer Lines, Inc. in 2022. In 2023, Patriot Rail acquired Delta Southern Railroad, Hydra Distribution & Rail Services and Hydra Transport, and what is now the Granite State Scenic Railway.

“It has been a privilege heading up Patriot Rail over the past 12 years,” Fenton said. “During that period, we expanded to more than 30 railroads in 24 states and built an industry-leading reputation for safety, value, and partnership with our customers. I am thankful to the team and confident that the company will shine under Brandy’s management.”

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