Laurie McGinnis, Robert Johns, Richard Braun
Jeff Hamiel, Charles Zelle, McGinnis
McGinnis, Meg Schmidt Duncan, Richard Murphy Jr.
Fred Corrigan, James Hovland, McGinnis
David Kittelson, David Bennett, Gina Baas
Jia-Liang Le, Mihai Marasteanu, Augusto Cannone Falchetto, Baas
Yingling Fan, Qian Chen, Baas
Frances Homans, David Smith, Baas
"What CTS does wouldn't be possible without the time, expertise, and funding support of many people and sponsors," said Laurie McGinnis, CTS director, in her opening comments at the CTS Annual Meeting and Awards Luncheon on April 18. "Thanking you is an important part of why we bring you together today," she said.
McGinnis also noted that the annual meeting kicked off activities celebrating the 25th anniversary of CTS this year. "Much has changed, but CTS is still going strong," she said. She then moderated the presentation of the following distinguished service awards:
Richard P. Braun Distinguished Service Award: Founding CTS director Richard Braun said it was an honor to give this award to Robert Johns, the director of CTS from 2001 to 2009. "Bob was a mainstay of CTS during the years that I ran it," Braun said. "He was the person with all the ideas, and he did all the heavy lifting." Johns has been the director of the U.S. Department of Transportation's John A. Volpe National Transportation Systems Center since September 2009. "Whatever happens in the future," Johns said, "the highlight of my career will be the 21 years I spent at CTS." He thanked his mentors and family, CTS staff, and CTS supporters. "People like you—faculty, research staff, students, professionals, elected officials, the full range in the audience today who step up and participate in CTS programs—you create the future," he said.
Ray L. Lappegaard Distinguished Service Award: This year's recipient, Charles Zelle, "is constantly giving his time, effort, energy, and skills...to our entire community," said Jeff Hamiel, the 2006 recipient. Zelle, president and CEO of Jefferson Lines, serves as the chair of the Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce and co-chair of the Transportation Task Force of the Itasca Project. A former member of the CTS Executive Committee, Zelle said he's learned much about transportation policy and the confluence of government, the private sector, and the nonprofit sector. "The opportunity to step out of the 'running a business' box, get engaged, learn, and contribute is what makes this area great," he said.
William K. Smith Distinguished Service Award: The 2012 recipient, Meg Schmidt Duncan, "has a passion" for professional education and is a tireless mentor in the logistics field, said Richard Murphy Jr., who received the award in 2006. Duncan is the senior manager of carrier relations with Koch Logistics and served as president of the Council of Supply Chain Management Twin Cities Roundtable from 2008 to 2011. The field of supply chain and logistics is fast-paced and volatile, Duncan said, so she works to convey the importance of continuing education, mentoring, and networking. "It's very fulfilling," she said.
Distinguished Public Leadership Award: The 2008 recipient, Fred Corrigan, presented this year's award to James Hovland, mayor of Edina and member of the I-494 Corridor Commission and the Transportation Advisory Board to the Met Council. Hovland, a current member of the CTS Executive Committee, said he likes working for our region. "We need to be thinking way ahead of what we need for transportation infrastructure if we're going to be competitive in a global market."
Gina Baas, CTS assistant director for education and outreach, moderated the presentation of the education awards.
Matthew J. Huber Award (given to students in engineering, science, and technology fields):
David Bennett is a master's and doctoral candidate in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Bennett's thesis project is to develop a complete fuel system to allow "next generation" direct-injection gasoline truck engines (2014 and beyond) to efficiently and cleanly burn propane. His advisor, Professor David Kittelson, said Bennett mentored other students while working on his own research. "I feel really lucky to be working with David," Kittelson said. For someone who likes to invent things, Bennett added, "this is a lot of fun."
Augusto Cannone Falchetto is a doctoral candidate in the civil engineering (CE) department, advised by CE professor Mihai Marasteanu and assistant professor Jia-Liang Le. Falchetto performed advanced research related to low-temperature cracking of asphalt pavements. "We were very fortunate to have his expertise," Marasteanu said.
John S. Adams Award (given to students in policy and planning fields):
Qian Chen is a dual master's candidate in the Humphrey School of Public Affairs and the Department of Statistics. She participated in a number of transportation-related research projects, including a study of the neighborhood and social influences of major transitways in the Twin Cities metropolitan area. Her advisor, Humphrey School assistant professor Yingling Fan, said Chen is "extremely diligent...to the degree that sometimes I feel the pressure to work harder."
David Smith is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Applied Economics. One of the major projects Smith worked on was the development of a living snow fence calculator for the Minnesota Department of Transportation. His advisor, Professor Frances Homans, said Smith is quite versatile and very engaged with the community. "His research has a very practical orientation directed toward a real problem," she said.
The ceremony concluded with the presentation of the Research Partnership Award.
Dawn Spanhake, Taek Kwon, Alan Rindels, Victor Lund, Rob Ege
Putting innovation to work is the inspiration for the CTS Research Partnership Award. Dawn Spanhake, CTS assistant director for program and financial management, presented the award during the CTS Annual Meeting and Awards Luncheon.
Partners in this year's project—"Advanced LED Warning Signs"—worked to improve the safety of rural blind intersections by developing a low-cost, easy-to-install advance warning sign system that can be implemented on existing static signs. The Advanced Light-Emitting Diode Warning System uses solar energy to power wireless technology for vehicle detection. The system shows promise in changing driver behavior by increasing wait times and reducing speeds. It was installed in St. Louis County, and positive benefits have been recorded.
Professor Taek Kwon of the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD) Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering accepted the award on behalf of the team. This research is "not just a traffic problem," Kwon said. "It's also a people problem." The work included a survey of nearby residents and discussion of the psychology of drivers crossing such intersections. The researchers are currently in the second phase of the project. "We hope it will provide real, practical solutions using off-the-shelf products that can be implemented in any rural intersections that have blind spots," he said.
In addition to Kwon and his research students, project partners were:
Three other projects received special recognition this year:
The annual award recognizes research projects within the CTS program that have resulted in significant impacts on transportation and rewards teams of individuals who have drawn on the strengths of their partnerships to achieve those results.
This is the last edition of the CTS Report. It has served the transportation community well since 1988, so hats off to the CTS Report!
But don't worry: the stellar coverage of transportation innovation that has been the hallmark of the CTS Report is not going away. Far from it. That same type of coverage will be more clear and user-friendly than ever in a brand-new publication that will be merged with the Research E-News.
Why the change? Because CTS is continually striving to improve our outreach efforts to transportation researchers, professionals, and practitioners, and this new signature CTS publication will be just the latest evolution of that work.
CTS is proud of what we've accomplished with the CTS Report, but we're not resting on our laurels. The times change, and so must we.
What will the changes be? We're not telling. Yet. But as a subscriber to the CTS Report, you will find out soon enough, in July. Please stay tuned.
Gina Baas, assistant director of education and outreach at CTS, was named International Member of the Year at the Women's Transportation Seminar (WTS) international conference in May.
Since 2009, Baas has served as co-chair of WTS International's Membership Development Committee. Baas uses her role on the committee to strengthen communications at both the local and international levels. She shares information with the local chapter, provides guidance on how to connect with the International WTS community, and helps translate information from the International Board to help determine impacts and opportunities for the local chapter.
Baas was also named Member of the Year by the Minnesota chapter of WTS at its April meeting. A WTS member since 1995, Baas has served on the chapter board in several positions, including president in 1999.
Also at the chapter meeting, the Minnesota GO Visioning Process of the MnDOT Office of Statewide Multimodal Planning received the Innovative Transportation Solutions Award. U of M researchers and CTS staff contributed to the project.
Mike Marti, a principal at SRF Consulting Group, is the new chair of the CTS Education and Outreach Council. He succeeds Shannon Tyree, former communications staff member with the City of St. Paul.
The first online distance-learning course from the Minnesota Local Technical Assistance Program (LTAP) is open for registration. The course—Gravel Road Maintenance and Design—was developed in partnership with Minnesota's Local Road Research Board. It provides a high-quality training option at a low cost to students and employers.
Students will be able to access the new training anytime, anywhere. All that's needed is access to a web-enabled computer and an e-mail address.
The course is made up of 10 lessons. Each lesson contains narrated presentations, video clips, reading assignments, a quiz, time to reflect on what has been learned, and time to develop an action plan. All reading assignments are available online within the course, so no additional books or materials need to be purchased.
The course includes content similar to the in-person LTAP workshop. Students who have already taken the classroom version can test and refresh their knowledge by taking the online version. Taking the online course also lets students become familiar and comfortable with computer-based learning. Minnesota LTAP, which is housed at CTS, is considering additional online training options.
One student— Jim Gilles of the Kanabec County Highway Department—has already completed the online training. "Thank you for the opportunity to participate in an online course like this," Gilles says. "I would like to see more classes incorporated into [online training], as it is harder to get away from the job to attend classes."
The recently published Emergency Guidebook for General Aviation Airports: A Guidebook for Municipal Airport Managers provides information to help municipal airport managers prepare for emergencies. The guidebook includes a template for creating an Airport Emergency Plan, checklists for typical hazards, and forms for emergency situations.
The new resource was published by the Airport Technical Assistance Program (AirTAP), which is housed at CTS.