The Point: Mayor Pettis served as RCTC representative for 20 years  

Riverside County Transportation Commissioner Gregory Pettis, who served as RCTC’s Chair in 2011, passed away on January 15 at age 63. Community members gathered for a celebration of his life on February 1.

Pettis represented the City of Cathedral City and served as a RCTC Commissioner since 1999. At the time of his passing, he was Cathedral City’s Mayor and a member of the City Council since 1994.

“Commissioner Pettis made his mark on the transportation industry,” said Commission Chair Chuck Washington.

“He tirelessly fought for Coachella Valley-San Gorgonio Pass Rail Corridor Service – a project that is now undergoing engineering and environmental studies. He also advocated for funding for the 91 corridor and federal reauthorization bills in Washington, D.C. many times. We will miss his leadership,” Washington said.

Pettis was a fierce advocate for his constituents with a long record of legislative accomplishments including creating a first-time homebuyer program, building Safe Routes to Schools, collaborating with the police department and social services for helping those addicted to drugs, and fostering the public library, City Hall, Fountain of Life, Senior Center, CV Link, Dennis Keat Soccer Fields, and Big League Dreams Sports Park.

He also founded the Healing Field Program at Patriot Park that honors local fallen soldiers, advocated for the LGBT Veterans Memorial at Desert Memorial Park, and raised the first Rainbow Flag at City Hall during Cathedral City LGBT Days.

At RCTC, Commissioner Pettis served on the Budget and Implementation Committee, Eastern Riverside County Programs and Projects Committee, California Association of Councils of Governments, LOSSAN Rail Corridor Authority, Mobile Source Air Pollution Reduction Review Committee, Audit Ad Hoc Committee, Coachella Valley-San Gorgonio Pass Rail Corridor Study Ad Hoc Committee, and Rail Track Rights Ad Hoc Committee.