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Meet Charlotte Muller, our senior sales manager who joined Hitachi Rail in 2020. In her role, Charlotte supports the global sales strategy, large turnkey projects, and smart mobility solutions designed to maximize product life cycles, improve passenger experiences, and fully support customers' operations.

To celebrate women's month, we spoke with Charlotte to learn more about her career journey, her passion for the rail industry, and the importance of Women's contributions to the transportation industry.

Overcoming Hurdles

I came to the USA as a student-athlete, and after graduating with my Master's, I had one year to prove my worth to obtain a work permit. I was lucky to land a job with a great firm quickly and get sponsored, but each time a new opportunity presented itself, I had to demonstrate my abilities repeatedly to keep my [visa] status, more so than any of my peers.

I've been lucky to hold several positions where I was either part of a new division within the company or the company was new to the North American market. Building the business successfully, positioning the brand, and landing the first customers are definite highlights!

Journey to Hitachi Rail

Did I envision a career in the transportation industry, let alone almost 15 years in the rail sector? Not really; however, I've landed terrific jobs and met wonderful people in this industry that have helped further my growth personally and professionally. As a Dutch citizen living in the US, I have always wanted to work for an international company, so – having said that – I'm happy with where I am in my career right now at Hitachi Rail. Most days, I work in cross-functional teams with colleagues from all over the world – even my native language comes in handy occasionally!

Life at Hitachi Rail

I started at Hitachi Rail on the last day of November 2020 as a Sr. Sales Manager in a newly created Business Unit. About 1.5 years in, after involvement in several exciting initiatives, incl. Railcar Telematics, as part of the RailPulse Pilot and expanding the Service & Maintenance group, I moved over to our Group Sales – Governance team.

In my current role, I support our global rail control strategy and ensure our North American regional commercial plans are aligned with our Vision for Growth. In addition to conducting a sales governance function, I also participate as the North American representative in our Digital Taskforce, advancing our digital products and service offering.

The company is ever-evolving, creating ample opportunities to get involved in different projects or contribute to new developments. I appreciate working collaboratively with so many of my talented colleagues.

Inspiration from Female Leaders

My mother has always been my inspiration. A working mom in a leadership role at a global company, she affected massive change within her (local) organization. She paved the path for managerial-level employees to hold part-time positions if desired. She made it possible for women to pursue their careers while balancing life outside of work.

I aspire to be a role model to my daughter (and sons!), similar to how my mom is to me.

Advice to the Next Generation of Women in Transportation

Stand your ground. Women are still a minority in the transportation industry, and, at times, we may not be taken as seriously as our male counterparts. However, we are just as capable! My advice:

  • Find people that lift you up

  • Seek out mentors that bring out the best in you

  • Join industry groups, specifically those which focus on women's development

  • Keep challenging yourself

Importance in Celebrating Women's History Month

It is essential to highlight the achievements and contributions of women who have helped shape this country and beyond, creating opportunities for future generations and ensuring we recognize women for all their worth.

Unfortunately, there have been many barriers for women to progress or succeed in society; Women's History Month empowers young women to continue seeking equity. The Educational Amendments Act has positively impacted me, specifically Title IX: it allowed me to play Division 1 field hockey and gain the experience of a lifetime surrounded by like-minded, strong women who supported each other no matter what. Despite how far we've come, we must persistently fight for women's equality and inspire (more) change.


Charlotte Muller

Senior Sales Manager Location: USA