Meet KTA

The Team

The Kansas Turnpike Authority employs nearly 500 people who are charged with maintaining the 236-mile roadway and improving its function as a vital corridor to move people and goods in Kansas. These employees are led by KDOT Secretary of Transportation Mike King and a 10-member leadership team.

Steve Hewitt

Steve Hewitt is the Turnpike’s Chief Executive Officer. Working closely with an executive staff, he is responsible for the KTA’s daily operations and represents the Turnpike in the local and regional transportation field. Prior to joining the KTA in summer of 2014, he held executive level public administrative positions in Clinton, Oklahoma and Greensburg, Kansas.

Alan D. Bakaitis

Alan Bakaitis serves in an executive advisor capacity for the Turnpike. He joined the KTA in 1998 as the Toll Operations Director and most recently served as KTA’s Chief Operations Officer responsible for all KTA routine operations.

Eric J. Becker

Eric J. BeckerEric Becker relies on his 15+ years of KTA experience in his role as Director of Roadway Operations where he leads both the Maintenance and Tolling Departments. His staff of more than 350 ensures the roadway is well maintained and that tolls are collected in 22 different locations. He also works closely with the Engineering Department to ensure the integrity of the pavement and structures that are the Kansas Turnpike. 

Rachel Bell

In her role as Director of Communications and Marketing, Rachel Bell leads and manages media relations, social media and strategic marketing plan. Since joining the Turnpike staff in 2000, Rachel has implemented communications systems to promote safety and ensure the driving public stays informed. She continues to save travelers time and money by growing the Turnpike’s K-TAG program, including overseeing K-TAG customer support and operations.

Capt. Joe Bott

Captain Joe BottCapt. Joe Bott is a veteran to law enforcement. He is the Commander of the Kansas Highway Patrol’s Troop G which is assigned to the Turnpike. He also oversees the KTA’s dispatch center that is the hub of both patrol and maintenance communications on the Turnpike. He and his staff uphold both the mission of the Turnpike and that of the Kansas Highway Patrol.

David E. Jacobson

David E. JacobsonAs the Director of Engineering, David Jacobson leads a staff of assistants, field personnel and four other professional engineers to ensure the Turnpike is safe and the future needs of the roadway are addressed in a timely and logical manner. He is a licensed Professional Engineer in the state of Kansas and has served the KTA since 1994.

Bruce Meisch

Bruce Meisch serves as the Director of Technology and is responsible for KTA’s technology related initiatives. His team provides technology based services and solutions to other KTA departments ensuring efficient and effective management of the organization. He has been with the KTA since 1985, and has degrees in both mathematics and computer science from Wichita State University.

Darlene Morgan

Darlene Morgan has been with the Kansas Turnpike for 20 years and served in the finance and toll departments before being promoted to Executive Assistant. She provides scheduling and organizational assistance to the Secretary of Transportation/Director of Kansas Turnpike, the Chief Executive Officer and the Authority Board. Darlene also assists in the overall execution of company policy and the management of office duties.

Alan Streit

Alan Streit is an AV Preeminent™ attorney with a Bachelor of Science from Kansas State University and a Juris Doctor from University of Kansas. He has litigated transportation and other cases throughout the Kansas District Court system and has argued several cases to the Kansas Court of Appeals and Kansas Supreme Court. Alan provides legal research, advice and representation to the KTA board and KTA executive staff.

Jennifer Szambecki

The Director of Innovation and Partnerships directs and manages processes that lead to new or improved service levels for Kansas Turnpike customers and for the transportation system in Kansas. This includes new technologies that ease access for internal and external customers to KTA and K-TAG tools, as well as partnerships with other tolling agencies and payment providers that add value for customers. Jennifer's background is in customer experience, branding and marketing.



Kansas Turnpike Authority


236 miles from Kansas City, Kansas, to the Oklahoma border south of Wichita

Service Areas

Six: near Lawrence, Topeka, Emporia, Matfield Green, Towanda and Belle Plaine

Number of Interchanges

Started with 14 and currently have 22

Traffic (2012)

35,596,150 vehicles

Net Toll Revenue (2012)

$87.5 million

Legislation passed

April 7, 1953

Ground Breaking

December 31, 1954

Opened to Traffic

October 25, 1956

Avg Passenger Trip

38 miles

Avg Commercial Trip

63 miles