Austin McConnell is a second-generation railroader who started his career in 1999 with a US based short line railway called the Wisconsin Central Limited. Austin worked in the Engineering group, running track gangs in Wisconsin and Minnesota. In 2001, CN rail acquired the Wisconsin Central and Austin moved to the transportation side of the business. In the last 21 years, Austin has held positions of increasing responsibility within CN, his last being General Manager for CN’s operations in British Columbia. Austin’s tenure in Engineering and Transportation across CN (both US and Canada) has allowed him to play an active role in the implementation of many industry firsts and large-scale projects. His involvement in these projects included participating in the initial concepts and designs, delivering the projects, and overseeing operational execution once in service. These ideas and projects have been replicated around the railway industry, to drive return on investment and accelerate improved results.