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Rider's Almanac Blog

Know Your Operator

Know Your Operator: David Stiggers, South Garage

Posted by John Komarek | Wednesday, June 9, 2021 9:57:00 AM


Years of service: 15
Lives: St. Paul
Garage: South
Family: Wife and four daughters

In 1991, David Stiggers came to Minnesota by way of Chicago to try to make it big in hip hop music. One of his songs, “Iluvyalikeachickenwing,” even received airtime on local radio. The music business, however, is a difficult and fickle industry to break into.      

“After a while you meet someone, have a few kids, and then you need to support your family,” Stiggers said. “Your priorities change.”    

For years, he worked as an office manager providing IT support at a mortgage company. When the recession came and he lost his job, he found work as a limo driver. While he enjoyed driving, the pay and hours varied and were often inconsistent, making it difficult to support his family.   
“One day as I was driving, I saw an ad on a bus saying Metro Transit needed drivers,” he said. “It appealed to me because it would be a consistent job with good pay and benefits.”   
Stiggers sees driving as second nature and the ability to help people his primary motivation on the job. Whether it’s his co-workers at South garage or customers onboard, he finds that helping people is what drives him every day.   

 “It’s great to see people onboard, even years later. It’s like running into an old friend,” Stiggers said. “And I’m always looking for ways to help my fellow operators.”   

In early 2021, Stiggers joined the Equity & Inclusion Team, which supports efforts to create equitable outcomes. He also serves as a union steward for the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 1005. He’s proud of being elected to this position so he can help operators do their best and provide mediation, if needed.     

“Everyone in my garage is like family to me. Whenever I arrive, I’m welcomed,” he said. 

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