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Jack R. Bengtson

Area 2 Director

Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, Virginia, West Virginia

Railroad experience

  • 1966 Hired out in Milwaukee with C&O/B&O Railroad (predecessor of CSX Transportation) as a ticket clerk and teletype operator for their cross lake ferry service.
  • Entered train service in 1967 as switchman and conductor switching, loading & unloading carferries.  
  • 1973 Moved to Grand Rapids, Michigan and worked as a road trainman, conductor and passenger conductor operating Amtrak trains between Grand Rapids and Chicago.
  • Served as Local President, and Asst. Local Chairman for the United Transportation Union, Local 313.
  • Instructed CSX safety & operating rules for CSX and Amtrak employees starting in 1983.
  • Set up monthly food distribution program (Chessie Employees Food Program) for unemployed railroad workers in 1983.
  • Represented CSX Transportation’s Detroit Division at Chicago’s CORA (Chicago Operating Rules Assoc.) meetings.
  • Conductor on CSX’s presidential inspection and re-election campaign trains for George H.W. Bush in 1992 as it traveled through Ohio and Michigan.
  • Involved in the daily operation of CP/Soo – St. Lawrence & Hudson Railroad trains through Grand Rapids, including the twice daily operation calls and facilitating the monthly root cause meetings.
  • Co-wrote the CSX Conductor’s training program and taught the program in Atlanta and at Cincinnati State College.
  • Helped establish Total Quality System in West Michigan and was involved in the organization and leadership of Labor/Management and Customer Focus groups.
  • Received the CSX Quality award for the design, development, testing and production of a rechargeable railroad lantern with the Norfolk Southern Railroad and Star Lantern Company.
  • 1998 Promoted to Assistant Trainmaster and then Trainmaster, retiring in 2003 with 37 years of service.
  • Joined NARVRE in 1999 and served as Program Chairman, Unit President 2006 – 2017, delegate to five national conventions and Assistant Area 2 Director 2008 – 2017.


  • Served in the USAF from 1962 – 1966.
  • Regional Manager for Waukegan Tire Companies Factory Tire Outlet in Byron Center 1985 – 1987.
  • Appointed to the Grandville Planning Commission 2006 – Present.
  • Grandville United Methodist Church usher, Staff Parish Relations Committee Chairman, member of finance committee and the Grand Rapids District Superintendancy Committee.