About the Michigan Public Transit Association

The Michigan Public Transit Association is a non-profit statewide association incorporated in 1977 under Section 501(c)6 of the Internal Revenue Code. First organized in 1974, our membership ranges from the largest urban public transit system providers in Michigan to a majority of the smaller rural demand-response systems. Geographically our membership is distributed throughout the state, from southeast Michigan to the western-most point of our Upper Peninsula.

Our association offices have been located in East Lansing since October, 1999. We are close to Michigan State University and nearby the State Capitol. Much of our advocacy involves working closely with Michigan’s Executive and Legislative branches and the Michigan Department of Transportation. We are also an advocate for our members on issues dealing with the federal branch of government.


Phone: 517-324-0858

1401 East Lansing Drive
East Lansing, MI 48823

MPTA Staff

Clark Harder

Executive Director: Clark Harder

Clark Harder is the Executive Director of the Michigan Public Transit Association, a position he has held since October, 1999. Prior to that Clark was a Michigan legislator serving in the House of Representatives from 1990-1998. He was the chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation in 1997-98. Clark has also served on the House staff, managed a small business and spent 12 years in broadcasting. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism from Michigan State University. He is responsible for general Association oversight, as well as coordinating all legislative lobbying activities.

Cindy Zolkowski

Director of Administrative Services: Cindy Zolkowski

Cindy Zolkowski is Director of Administrative Services for the MPTA. Cindy has been with the Association since 1995, having previously worked for several years for General Motors Corporation. Cindy’s background is in accounting and she holds a B.S. degree from Western Michigan University. Cindy’s primary responsibilities with the MPTA include planning and management of all financials, budgets, conferences and meetings. Cindy is also responsible for administering the Rural Transit Assistance Program (RTAP) on a contract with the Michigan Department of Transportation.

Administrative Assistant: Pink Cianciolo

Tinoros (Pink) Cianciolo joined MPTA as Administrative Assistant in April, 2023 Pink holds both a Bachelor's Degree and Master's Degree in Accounting, and has previously worked at Thai Summit America Corporation in Howell, MI. She is a young mother of three pre-school age children who keep her hopping. She will be assisting Cindy during fiscal 2023 as well as supporting Clark and Joe on conferences.  Pink looks forward to becoming better acquainted with all MPTA Members and Vendors.

Joe Dekoning

Director of Training and Support: Joe DeKoning

Joe DeKoning joined the MPTA in the spring of 2008 as the part-time Director of Training and Support. Previously Joe was, for a number of years, the Executive Director of the Bay Area Transportation Authority (BATA) in Traverse City, MI and served for over a decade on the MPTA Board of Directors. Joe also previously worked in the hospitality industry. With the MPTA, Joe has primary responsibility for all training meetings/conferences that benefit the rural transit agencies of Michigan. He is the liaison with MDOT for training programs, as his position is funded through a grant from MDOT.

Articles/Submissions Policy

The MPTA no longer publishes a hard copy newsletter. We do, however, put articles of general interest on the Members Section of our website and we do welcome both solicited and unsolicited content. We accept content in pdf, word or publisher formats. We do not provide payment for materials used, but electronic publication on our website may lead to future business opportunities with our members.