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Midwestern ITE Annual Awards

2018 District Award Winners


image-0580Midwestern District Student Paper Award

This award is given annually for a significant paper prepared by a student member of the Midwestern District. The 2018 winner is Taslima Akter, from the University of Arkansas for “Leveraging Open-Source GIS Tools to Determine Freight Patterns from Anonymous GPS Data.”

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image-0585Midwestern District Student Chapter Award

This award recognizes the Student Chapter that has best achieved the objectives of the Student Chapter Charter: “to promote the advancement of transportation and traffic engineering by fostering the close association of students with the transportation and traffic engineering profession and ITE; to acquaint Chapter Members with topics of interest in transportation and traffic engineering through the medium of addresses by competent speakers, and of Chapter‐sponsored trips; to foster the development of professional spirit; to promote common interests among Chapter members; and to encourage the expansion of facilities for transportation and traffic engineering study.”

The 2018 winner is Iowa State University. The chapter consists of more than 40 student members who hosted 20 professional development activities including tours, technical seminars, meetings, and sponsored the attendance of student representatives at numerous section and district conferences. Iowa State University is a shining example of student activity in ITE—winning this award 11 times since the year 2000.

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Midwestern District Rising Star

The Rising Stars Program is intended to identify the next generation and new faces of the transportation profession and is designed to recognize members under the age of 35 who have already made an impact on the profession, have demonstrated the ability to lead the next generation, and have implemented innovative techniques to solve transportation problems.

The 2018 Midwestern District Rising Star is Sarah Hernandez, PhD. Since joining staff of the University of Arkansas in 2015 as an instructor and researcher, Sarah has established a robust freight transportation research program. The outcomes of her research have helped the Arkansas Department of Transportation determine solutions for topics such as truck parking and evaluating WIM auto-calibration practices. Sarah also leads STEM outreach events for middle school and high school girls, as well as serving as the faculty advisor for the University of Arkansas’ ITE Student Chapter.

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image-0592Midwestern Chapter/Section Activities Award

This award is designed to encourage and promote active involvement by ITE sections and chapters in activities, promotion, and the purpose and objectives of ITE. It recognizes the overall quality of the activities, whether technical or non‐technical, and may include meetings, committees, reports, seminars and training programs, student participation, career guidance, membership campaigns, or public relations activities.

The 2018 winner is the North Central Section.

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image-0596Midwestern Section Communications Award & International District and Section Communications Award

This award recognizes the Section that during a calendar year most effectively communicates with their membership through innovative approaches and the use of new media. In a technical and educational association, communication of meaningful information to the membership is a major goal. This award should encourage other Sections to take on new ways of communicating and finding the best way to reach members in the best way possible.

The North Central Section was selected as the winner of both the Midwestern District and ITE International Communication Awards.

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image-0606Midwestern District Transportation Achievement Award for Planning & ITE Transportation Award for Planning

The winner of the 2018 award is the City of Madison, Wisconsin, for the City of Madison Smart City Initiatives.

This planning project includes partnerships with the University of Wisconsin—Madison along with the other public and private sector entities to deploy a next-generation transportation system to address the city’s challenges and promote economic growth, equity, mobility, public health, safety, and a clean environment.

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image-0608Midwestern District Transportation Achievement Award for Operations

The winner of the 2018 award is the Wisconsin Department of Transportation and Justin Effinger, Traffic Safety Engineer now with the Lake County Division of Transportation, for the Dynamic Yellow Arrow Operations project.

This project reviewed the use of flashing yellow arrows for signalized dual left-turn lanes and high volume single left-turn as a minimal cost solution to reduce delay without compromising safety.

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image-0610Midwestern District Transportation Achievement Award for Design

The winner of the 2018 award is the Wisconsin Department of Transportation and Strand Associates for the US State Highway 18/151 and Verona Road Project.

This project combined multiple innovative ideas and concepts to positively impact the local economy and environment, the traveling public, and community safety at the US Highways 18/151 and Verona Road interchange which is located on one of the busiest corridors in the Madison metropolitan area.

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image-0612Midwestern District Transportation Achievement Award for Safety

The winner of the 2018 award is the City of Lincoln, Nebraska, for Green Light Lincoln.

Green Light Lincoln is an initiative by the City of Lincoln Traffic Engineering Division to improve traffic flow and traffic safety city wide through improvement of the overall traffic management system.

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image-0626Midwestern District Transportation Professional of The Year

The Midwestern District established the Transportation Professional of the Year Award to recognize an individual who has made outstanding contributions to the Midwestern District, their Section, and ITE, or through achievements in the transportation profession. The 2018 winner is Yang Tao, PhD, P.E.

Yang has distinguished himself through his career involvement in ITE. He currently serves as the Interim City Traffic Engineer in Madison, Wisconsin, where he has played a leadership role in Madison’s Smart Cities Initiatives, a program that was awarded the 2018 District and International Transportation Achievement Awards. He serves as the chair of the ITE Smart Communities Task Force, where he reorganized and formed a strong team with diverse backgrounds, ranging from ITE President to student members. Under his leadership, the team formalized its mission statement, developed a strategic action plan, and scoped for opportunities to educate, engage and assist the ITE membership on smart community projects. Other areas of Yang’s involvement with ITE include serving as the Vice Chair of the Transportation Systems Management and Operations Council, serving as a Public Agency Representative on the Roadway Transportation System Cybersecurity Framework and Tools Working Group, as well as serving on the Wisconsin Section Board of Direction since 2014, currently the 2018 President.

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image-0624Midwestern District Distinguished Member

The Distinguished Member Award is awarded as an honorary designation, presented to a member of the District who has provided outstanding and significant contributions to ITE, the District, and their Section/Chapter over a period of many years. This year’s honoree is Thomas Campbell, P.E.

Tom has made numerous contributions to the Midwestern District, serving on the Board as the North Central Section Representative in 1977, the District Chair in 1978, and the District Director from 1995-1997. In addition, he has dedicated his time to serve as the Midwestern District’s Administrator since 1999 where he has done an outstanding job advising the Board in its governance of the District.

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