Hobart and William Smith Trustee Aloysee Heredia Jarmoszuk ’98 has been on the job as Chair and Commissioner of the Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) in New York City for less than two months. In those short weeks, she has watched the city shift to essential services only and ridership fall significantly because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
With demand down, there are few for-hire vehicles currently on the road. Some of the city’s TLC Licensed Drivers are helping passengers get to and from grocery stores, while others are finding work by delivering meals to the elderly and other homebound residents through the GetFoodNYC Food Delivery Program.
“I was here for 9/11, and this is far worse than that,” says Heredia Jarmoszuk, who remains hopeful. “Our healthy drivers are on the front lines delivering meals to people who need them.”
As head of the TLC, Heredia Jarmoszuk presides over a board of nine commissioners and leads a staff of about 600 employees. Created in 1971, the commission is responsible for licensing and regulating medallion taxis and for-hire vehicles that provide transportation upon request. During normal times, more than one million taxi rides take place in the city every day.
As Heredia Jarmoszuk manages the present crisis, she also has an eye on the future. One of her top areas of focus after the city is back to running normally will be working to stabilize and rebalance the industry, which experienced disruption through unregulated growth beginning in 2015 with the arrival of app-based for-hire services. “The goal is to create a more equitable landscape so every sector can co-exist but also be viable and generate revenue and income,” she says.
Also high on Heredia Jarmoszuk’s list is how to provide debt relief to drivers in financial distress, improving accessibility for New Yorkers with disabilities (particularly those who use wheelchairs) and leveraging technology in order to make the industry more stable, helping professionalize driving and to be competitive. “We have a solid brand,” she says, “but we need to contemporize it. It needs to evolve.”
Prior to the TLC, Heredia Jarmoszuk served as chief of staff to NYC Deputy Mayor Laura Aglin and also worked as chief of staff for Central Operations at the Department of Education. She credits much of her career success to her time at the Colleges. “Being a student and an alumna of William Smith prepared me in so many ways for all the roles that I’ve had professionally — specifically and particularly because I’ve always worked in male-dominated environments,” she says.
A political science major, Heredia Jarmoszuk joined the HWS Board of Trustees in 2016.