Katelyn Saenz  -  Source: Canva

Katelyn Saenz

Source: Canva

See all our School Bus Fleet Trailblazers of 2024 in this article.

Katelyn Saenz

Age: 33

Works for: San Antonio Independent School District

Role: Director of Operations (Transportation Department)

Describe a day in your professional life.

Saenz: I am here to support our staff and bus drivers by overseeing the daily operation of our department, ensuring our 120 bus routes pick up over 8,000 students that we transport daily. We also transport over 18,000 field trips annually, for athletic and extracurricular events.

What brought you to the transportation industry?

Saenz: My children were students within San Antonio ISD and I really liked their school so it made me interested in pursing a job with SAISD. I started off with the district as a substitute teacher and after applying for several full time positions, I was fortunately hired for a full time dispatcher opening in transportation over six years ago.

What’s something critical that you’ve learned during your time in the student transportation industry?

Saenz: Something critical that I have learned during my time in the transportation industry is flexibility. I have learned that a lot of departments limit their efficiency by running everything the same year after year. Be open to change, new ideas and be willing to take everything apart to start over. No one knows everything and you have to be open to criticism and the voices of your front line workers who are actually doing the job. Listening to the ideas and getting input from your employees also helps with increasing morale.

What’s your advice for someone considering a career in this industry?

Saenz: My advice is to go for it. There isn't traditional schooling to lead you to this path but I am so glad I took this job and found something that I am passionate about and a great team of people that I love working with. Take pride in the difference you are making for students, the much needed service that you are providing and hopefully love what you do.

About the author
Wes Platt

Wes Platt

Executive Editor

Wes Platt joined Bobit in 2021 as executive editor of School Bus Fleet Magazine. He writes and edits content about student transportation, school bus manufacturers and equipment, legislative issues, maintenance, fleet contracting, and school transportation technology - from classic yellow diesel buses to the latest EPA-funded electric, propane, and CNG vehicles.

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