Executive Staff

The CapMetro Executive Staff is comprised of leaders in operations and planning, safety, customer experience and diversity and inclusion. Read about the members of our leadership team below. 

Dottie Watkins

President & CEO - Dottie first began her transit career in 1994 – driving buses part-time while she attended the University of Texas at Austin. Prior to her current role she was the agency's Deputy CEO, and before that Chief Customer Officer/Chief Operating Officer, and before that, CapMetro's Vice President – Bus Operations and Maintenance. She has been responsible for all aspects of the agency's contracted bus operations through active monitoring of service quality and contract compliance.

Dottie holds a Bachelor of Social Work from the University of Texas and a Master of Business Administration from St. Edward’s University. A native Austinite, Dottie regularly enjoys trips to the pool with her daughter and plays French Horn in a local community band.


Kerri ButcherDeputy CEO - Kerri Butcher joined Capital Metro in 2007 and previously served as CapMetro’s Chief Legal Counsel from 2009-2021 and as the Chief of Staff and External Affairs from 2018-2021. She currently serves as the Deputy CEO and her duties include responsibility for leading the administrative functions of the Authority, including Strategic Enterprise functions, Legal, Government Affairs, Customer Experience and Engagement, People & Culture and Board of Directors functions. 

Prior to joining CapMetro in 2007, Kerri served as the Chief of Staff to a senior member of the Texas House of Representatives for almost ten years. She earned her J.D. from the University of Texas and a B.A. from Austin College, in Sherman, Texas. Kerri lives with her husband and two young, energetic boys in Austin.


Andrew Skabowski Photo

Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer - Andrew Skabowski directs all activities associated with the daily operations of CapMetro’s public transit service, focusing on safety and fleet reliability while maintaining and ensuring staff is properly trained on and knowledgeable of all appropriate procedures and guidelines.

Andrew manages people because people is what transit is all about. Transit is about engaging people to move people. Remember “7 billion people in the world are using public transportation: there are only about 1 billion car drivers”.

Andrew began his transit career in 1988 as an intern at New York City Transit and worked at agencies such as SEPTA, New Jersey Transit, Coach USA and Houston METRO before finding his way to Austin earlier this year. Andrew has been recognized for his ability to lead public and private transport organizations through turnaround and growth strategies.



Executive Vice President, Chief Experience and Engagement Officer - As CXO for CapMetro, Samantha leads the agency’s strategic initiatives and team members in Customer Service, Community Engagement, Communications, Marketing and Client/Business Development. These teams are unified in their effort to provide valuable experiences and meaningful engagements with our community, customers, partners and team members.

Samantha joined CapMetro in 2019 as its Director of Brand Communications and served as the Senior Director of Public Affairs and Engagement, leading the agency’s Community Engagement and Communications teams, prior to her current role. Samantha began her career in public service at the City of Austin in 2010 in the Public Information Offices for City Hall and the Austin Transportation Department. Before joining CapMetro, she led large-scale communications efforts for Austin ISD, including the district's successful 2017 bond, as the Assistant Director of Public Affairs and Operations.

She is a volunteer for Seedling Mentor Program and an alumnus of the University of Missouri Journalism School and Texas State, where she earned her Master of Public Administration.

Catherine Walker

Executive Vice President, Chief Financial & Risk Officer - Catherine Walker joined CapMetro in 2021 and is responsible for the financial planning, budgeting and accounting functions, the IT department, risk management, treasury, investments, fare programs, grants administration, and the Transit Store.

Catherine has more than 20 years of experience in finance and operations leadership roles, the majority of her career spent in the private sector. She has a Master’s of Business Administration from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, a B.S. in Business Economics and Public Policy, and a B.A. in Spanish, both from Indiana University. Catherine is also a Six Sigma Black Belt.

Catherine lives in Austin and spends her free time with her three super active children at wrestling tournaments, soccer matches, golfing as a family, and camping. She has served on the Board for YMCA of Austin since 2019 and is active with her children’s Cub Scout Pack.

Donna Simmons

Executive Vice President of Administration, Diversity and Inclusion Officer - Donna’s career in public transit spans thirty years and includes experience in human resources, safety, security, procurement, risk management, labor relations and budget management. In her first role as a grants coordinator for CapMetro, she secured a federal grant to purchase 100 new buses soon after the election to create the transit authority in 1985.

As the Executive Vice President of Administration and Diversity and Inclusion Officer she is responsible for strategic leadership of human resources, contracts and procurement, workforce development, employee wellness and diversity programs. As Capital Metro’s first Diversity and Inclusion Officer she is leading implementation of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Program with the goal of leveraging the diversity of our workforce to advance equity and inclusion internally with our employees and externally as a community partner.

Simmons is a two-time graduate of the University of Miami, earning a bachelor’s degree in politics and public affairs and a master’s of public administration. Ever a life-long learner, she has achieved certifications in human resources, project management and public finance.

Photo of Benjamin Sims

Vice President, People & Culture - Benjamin brings to CapMetro a dynamic, solution-oriented approach with innovative strategies that invigorate organizations, propelling them toward unprecedented growth and effectiveness. He has a proven track record in designing and implementing original human capital strategies across various domains, including leadership, learning, rewards, inclusion, performance management, career planning and talent acquisition. 

Benjamin holds a Master of Education degree specialized in Human Resource Development from Seattle University, complemented by a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Northwood University in Cedar Hill, Texas. He also possesses a Human Resources Assistant Certificate from Dallas County Community College. His professional certifications include being a certified Professional in Human Resources (PHR) and SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-CP).

Benjamin's career is marked by his unwavering commitment to learning and development, his creative approach to problem-solving and his dedication to fostering engaging & dynamic employee experiences. 


Sharmila Mukherjee

Executive Vice President, Chief Strategic Planning and Development Officer - Sharmila Mukherjee, AICP is a transit executive and industry leader with over two decades of progressive urban transportation planning and project management experience in private and public sectors. At CapMetro, she manages service planning, short and long-range planning, ridership analysis, regional transportation coordination, transit-oriented development, federal discretionary grants strategy and delivery, and offers one of the guiding voices in the Project Connect, Austin’s high-capacity transit system expansion program. Prior to joining CapMetro, Sharmila held leadership positions at an international engineering and infrastructure consulting firm.

Sharmila serves on Board of Trustees of the TransitCenter, a national think-tank and on Board of Directors of Austin’s own, the Leadership Austin. Sharmila holds a master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning with specialization in Transportation Planning from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a Graduate Certificate in Traffic Engineering Methods from Northwestern University. Sharmila is the 2017 graduate of Leadership APTA and 2016 Eno Transit Leadership (Mid-Manager) Program.


Gardner Tabon

Executive Vice President, Systemwide Accessibility & Chief Safety Officer - Gardner Tabon has served the industry he has come to love, globally, for over 34 years. Gardner has been in his current role since July 2018, and is responsible for the research, development, implementation, and management of all corporate, commuter rail, bus, demand response and construction safety, emergency management and public safety-related programs and initiatives.

As a part of an industry-wide leadership role and demonstration of his overall commitment to safety and security excellence, he serves as the American Public Transportation Association’s Commuter Rail Safety and Security Subcommittee chair.

He is a member of the American Society of Safety Engineers, National Fire Protection Association and World Safety Organization. He is certified by the World Safety Organization as a certified safety executive and holds a USDOT-required Transit Safety and Security Program or TSSP certification.


Dave Kubicek HeadshotExecutive Vice President, Capital Construction Engineering Design – Dave J. Kubicek began his transit career in 1987 with Dallas Area Rapid Transit as part of the original Light Rail Construction and Operational Start-up Team. He has held other executive roles at the Los Angeles CountyMetropolitan Transportation Authority, Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority in Washington D.C., Parsons Transportation Group in Virginia, and Metropolitan Transportation Authority in New York for the Long Island Rail Road and Metro North Railroad. He was recently part of Austin Transit Partnership (ATP) on Project Connect elements prior to joining CapMetro in 2022.

In his current role, Dave directs activities around capital, construction, engineering, and design efforts for CapMetro. This also includes facilities programming, real estate, and electrification and communication programs which are vital elements necessary for the successful delivery of CapMetro’s various services. Dave and his team also work closely with ATP on the development, design, construction, and integration of the Light-Rail operations that CapMetro will operate. 

Dave supports various public transportation organizations such as the American Public Transportation Association and Federal Railroad Administrations, serving on committees and assisting with regulatory and oversight to include Code of Federal Regulation applications and test pilot programs.

Leroy Alloway headshot

Vice President, Government Affairs - Leroy Alloway joined CapMetro in October 2022 as the Vice President of Government Affairs where he is responsible for developing and delivering the organizations’ strategic approach to governmental relations. Prior to joining CapMetro, Leroy spent twenty years working in transportation policy and programs in the San Antonio area. Leroy began his career as an assistant to members of the San Antonio City Council, and has also worked for the Alamo RMA, Alamo MPO and, most recently, VIA Transit.

Leroy holds a BA from Texas Lutheran University, a MPA from the University of Texas at San Antonio, and a Doctorate in Public Administration from Capella University. Leroy is an alumnus of the 2017 Eno Center for Transportation Transit Senior Executive Program and the Leadership APTA class of 2022.

Cheyenne Krause

Chief of Staff - Cheyenne serves as the Chief of Staff at CapMetro, supporting strategic and priority initiatives, and the CapMetro executive team. Prior to joining CapMetro in 2021, Cheyenne worked for several years in various roles with the City of Austin City Manager’s Office and Transportation Department, most recently working for two years as the senior support for Assistant City Manager Gina Fiandaca. In this role she worked hand-in-hand with City leadership to manage the City’s Mobility Outcome, including several City departments and transportation safety and mobility initiatives. Notably, she was an integral part of the team that collaborated with CapMetro in the success of Project Connect in 2020, and has also played key roles on other critical initiatives while working in the City Manager’s Office and Austin Transportation Department in government relations and communications positions.

Cheyenne is a native Austinite. She attended Texas State University for her Bachelor’s Degree and the University of Texas LBJ School of Public Affairs for her Master’s Degree in Public Affairs.