Should Nat Ford Stay or Go?

493881338_713f942877.jpgSFMTA Executive Director Nat Ford and Mayor Gavin Newsom. Flickr photo: SFist

At yesterday's Rules Committee meeting at City Hall, as first noted by the Examiner, there was some banter between Supervisor Chris Daly and MTA Board Chair Tom Nolan about MTA Executive Director Nat Ford. They seemed to indicate he was looking to leave the agency.

Daly:  “In your next term, you may have to hire a new general manager or two or three. Can you tell me about what you are going to be looking for as an MTA commissioner for the next Muni general manager? I like Nat Ford. But I think Nat Ford is looking elsewhere."

Nolan: "Well, I have thought about that, in terms of succession planning. I've asked him not to do it on my watch. I think he's done a terrific job. He brings a lot of skills into it in a whole series of areas. And I think what I would like to do  in terms of preparation for it is talk to a lot of people that I respect in the industry about what it really takes."

He added, "I'd like to get somebody like him. I'm not sure how we would proceed with that. We have thought about it. We have talked about it. I've spoken to the Mayor about it as well."

It's no secret that Ford, who was appointed to the post more than three years ago by the Mayor, has been considering other opportunities. The Chronicle reported on rumors he was being looked at for a post in the Obama administration and was approached about the recently-filled executive director position at the Los Angeles MTA.

What do you think Streetsbloggers? Should Nat Ford stay or go? If he does depart, who would be the best person to fill his shoes at the MTA?