Title/Position: Director of Parking and TransportationProfile:
Richard Sobaram is the Director of the Parking and Transportation Department at the University of Miami and is responsible for all aspects of the parking and transportation program on the University’s Coral Gables campus. This includes a multi-disciplinary permit system, 83 surface lots and 5 multi-level parking facilities, routine and special transportation services, parking enforcement, permit marketing, inventory maintenance, signage, commuter relations, motorist assistance program, customer satisfaction program, and receivables management.
Since joining the department in April 2008, Sobaram has spearheaded several cost savings initiatives, including the substitution of contract security officers with sworn parking service officers, closing of certain parking garages during winter and summer breaks and streamlining the on campus shuttle operation . These initiatives have resulted in a 20% reduction in expenses and no increase in parking permit fees for faculty, staff and students two years in a row. Under Sobaram’s leadership, the parking department initiated the permit mail-out system for faculty and staff in July 2009 and as a result 1800 faculty and staff members and 1700 students received their parking permit in the mail, thus eliminating the manual process and time consuming task of picking up permits in person.
Additionally, the very popular Zipcar, car sharing program was launched in August 2008 under Sobaram’s direction and has proven to a valuable service to the UM community. UM now has 11 Zipcars in its fleet, including 9 on the Coral Gables campus and 2 on the Miller School of Medicine campus. It is estimated that for each Zipcar in operation, 15-20 personal cars are taken off the road.
Prior to joining the parking department, Sobaram served as the Safety & Security Coordinator for the housing department at the University of Miami for over 15 years where he managed a campus housing security program comprised of five residential colleges and seven apartment buildings.
Sobaram holds a B.A. in Criminology as well as an MBA in International Business from the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida and a M.A. in Business & Organizational Security Management from Webster University in St. Louis, Missouri. He is also board certified in Security Management