This is the comprehensive list of all people speaking at the 2023 Southern District Student Leadership Summit.
Dr. Jason Keith is Dean of the Bagley College of Engineering at Mississippi State University (MSU), a position that he has held for nine years. Before this, he served two and a half years as Director (Department Head) for the Swalm School of Chemical Engineering at MSU. Prior to his joining Mississippi State University, he was an assistant professor (2000-2006) and associate professor (2006-2011) of chemical engineering at Michigan Technological University. Keith holds a BS from The University of Akron and a PhD from the University of Notre Dame, both in chemical engineering. Keith has won numerous awards for his teaching and research programs and was elected as a Fellow of the American Society for Engineering Education in 2014.
Lynn Spruill is a native of Starkville and is a graduate of Starkville High School and Mississippi State University earning a Bachelor of Science in Business in 1974. Lynn is a former United States Naval Officer and pilot, Mayor of Addison, Texas, pilot for Delta Air Lines and Starkville city administrator. She is currently a businesswoman and realtor in Starkville, Mississippi. As a United States Naval Officer and pilot she became the first woman in the history of the Navy to qualify as a carrier pilot in 1979.
Hibbett Neel, PE, has been an active member of the Institute of Transportation Engineers for over 50 years. In 1976 he cofounded the Deep South Section and served as its first president. He served in leadership roles for all offices of the Institute including International President in 2014. His numerous awards include the Southern District Marble J. Hensley, Herman J. Hoose, and Private Section achievement awards. In 2011 he received the Burton Marsh Distinguished Service award. In 2018 Hibbett was named as an Honorary Member, a status received by only 90 members since the Institute was established in 1933.
He has authored several articles including “Striving for Ethics in Transportation Engineering and “Ethics and the Transportations Consultant”. In 2004 he was recognized by the Mississippi Chapter of the American Public Works Association as member of the year and in 2009 the National American Public Works Association recognized him with a lifetime achievement award. In 2004 he received the American Society of Civil Engineers Diversity Champion Award. In 2007 Hibbett received the American Council of Engineering Companies Community Service Award and in 2012 the Teddy Roosevelt Distinguished Service award from its Mississippi Chapter. Hibbett follows the philosophy of Sir Winston Churchill who said, “We make a living by what we get but we make a life by what we give”. Neel’s community involvement includes the Mississippi Economic Council, Mississippi Blood Services, Catholic Charities, Greater Jackson Foundation, Metro Jackson Chamber of Commerce, Keep Jackson Beautiful, Leadership Jackson, Jackson 2000 and Downtown Jackson Partners.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Transportation
Leadership Within the Workplace
Teaching Aided by Virtual Reality
Entering the Workforce
A Day in the Life
What is ITE?
Best Interview Practices
Carolyn Bell currently serves as Civil Rights Director for the Mississippi Department of Transportation. She has held various positions in state government for the past 35 years with the Department of Education, State Personnel Board and now MDOT for the past 29 years. The last 21 years as Civil Rights Director for MDOT, her division is responsible for all the civil rights functions of the agency to include the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Program, Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO), Contract Compliance, On-the-Job Training (OJT) Program, Title VI, and American’s With Disabilities Act (ADA) Program. She graduated the Certified Public Manager Program in June, 2007. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management from the University of Phoenix.
Aaron Cagle joined Volkert in 2022 and has over 10 years of bridge design and preservation expertise. Previously, he was an engineer for the Mississippi Department of Transportation, where he served as the Program Development Engineer. He also serves as a part time lecturer at Mississippi State University, where he was given the Mary Jasper Award for Outstanding Teaching in 2021. Mr. Cagle was part of a number of firsts during his tenure at MDOT, including: development of MDOT’s first bridge preservation program, development of MDOT’s first performance based management program, plan development for the first bridge preservation project with an interstate closure, specification development for the first bridge preservation project utilizing a nano-silica admixture for internal concrete curing, and plan development for the first bridge preservation project utilizing hybrid polymer concrete. Aaron currently serves as the Project Delivery Lead for Mississippi at Volkert and interim advisor for MSU's ITE Chapter!
Jessica Dilley is the Assistant State Planning Engineer at MDOT where she has served for over 10 years. In her role, she oversees MDOT Planning’s feasibility, mapping, and traffic data collection and analysis sections. Previous to her current role, Jessica was over MDOT Planning’s Feasibility Analysis Section for the state. She enjoys her work with MDOT, knowing that she is helping better the safety and transportation of the traveling public. Jessica serves as current President of Mississippi’s Chapter of Women in Transportation Seminar (WTS), and immediate Past President for DSITE and MES. She enjoys her involvement with professional organizations to help bring networking, professional development, and mentoring opportunities to transportation professionals statewide. She has her Master’s degree in Environmental Engineering as well as her Undergraduate degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Mississippi. She is a licensed engineer in the state of Mississippi. She and her husband live in Madison with their two kids, Gracyn (11), Hayes (6), and Owen (2). On the weekends Jessica enjoys spending time with her family at the soccer and baseball fields.
Case Fulcher graduated from Mississippi State University in 2012 with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering and 2015 with a Master of Science in Civil Engineering with a transportation focus. His involvement in ITE started in college where he served as president for MSU’s ITE student chapter and a traffic bowl team-leader for multiple years. He is a transportation/traffic engineer in Neel-Schaffer’s Starkville office with 6 years of professional experience and 4 years of research experience. He has experience in traffic engineering, traffic signal design, transportation planning, traffic safety, and ITS design. Case is the chair of Deep South ITE’s younger member committee and sits on the Southern District ITE’s younger member committee. Case is also the current Deep South ITE secretary/treasurer.
Michael Joyner graduated from Mississippi State University in 2016 with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering. His involvement in ITE started in college where he served as secretary and vice president for MSU’s ITE student chapter. He is a transportation engineer and project manager in Gresham Smith’s Jackson office with nearly 7 years of experience. He has design experience in roadway design, permanent signing plans, roadway hydraulic analysis, and ITS design. Michael has served as secretary and younger member chair for the American Society of Civil Engineers Jackson Branch and currently serves as president for the ASCE MS Section. He co-chairs Southern District ITE’s younger member committee, and sits on Deep South ITE’s younger member committee.
Jonathan Kiser graduated from MSU in 1993 with a BS in Civil Engineering. He is a registered Professional Engineer in 7 states and after 28 years of private consulting in Florida, Arizona, and Mississippi, started Kiser Traffic and Engineering in June of 2021. He was previously with Neel-Schaffer for 21 years and currently serves as the Deep South ITE - Section Administrator. He works on a variety of transportation planning and traffic engineering projects throughout the southeast.
Jenny Mehri joined Mississippi State University in 2021 and has over 7 years of experience in higher education and student affairs. She currently serves as the Cooperative Education Career Advisor for several majors within the Bagley College of Engineering at Mississippi State University, including Aerospace, Biological, Biomedical, Mechanical, and Civil Engineering. Prior to her appointment at Mississippi State, she served in numerous roles at Mississippi College and the Mississippi University for Women that included advising, proctoring, admissions, planning and implementing student orientation, and developing student accommodations plans. Her background also includes several years of experience working with Federal Grants, and management of both grant-related and departmental finances. Jenny has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Mississippi State University, a Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy from Mississippi College, and she is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Higher Education Administration from the University of Southern Mississippi.
Jody Peace is a Project Manager with Arcadis’ Traffic and ITS group in Atlanta. Joining Arcadis immediately after graduation from Georgia Tech, Jody has had the opportunity to work on a wide variety of planning and engineering projects over the past 15 years including gameday traffic plans for the new Atlanta Braves stadium, closure analysis for the I-440 reconstruction in Nashville, and developing comprehensive transportation plans for many of the counties in the Atlanta Metro area. He is currently working as the Project Manager for the GDOT Statewide Operational Improvement Program which seeks to resolve congestion bottlenecks around the state. Jody is a Past President of Georgia Section ITE and is a licensed engineer in Georgia, Florida, and Tennessee.
Dr. Lucy Priddy is a Military Program Officer at the US Army Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) in Vicksburg, Mississippi. In this role, she serves as an action officer for military research and development supporting program formulation, execution, analysis, and review. Prior to this role, she served as an Assistant Technical Director for military engineering projects related to force projection, maneuver support, and force protection. As a research civil engineer, she conducted research focused on expedient and traditional pavement repair, evaluation, and construction technologies.
Dr. Priddy graduated from the University of Mississippi with her bachelor's degree in civil engineering in 2002 and completed her master's degree in civil engineering from Mississippi State University in 2005. She completed her PhD in civil engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in 2014. She is a registered as a professional engineer in Mississippi. Dr. Priddy serves on the University of Mississippi’s Civil Engineering Advisory Board, is an adjunct professor for Mississippi State University, and is a member of Virginia Tech’s Advisory Board for the Center for Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure.
Dr. Priddy currently serves on American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Transportation and Development Institute Board of Governors and is an ASCE Fellow. She is active in several technical committees of the Transportation Research Board and is a past chair of the Young Members Council.
Dr. Mizanur Rahman is an assistant professor in the Department of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering at the University of Alabama (UA), Tuscaloosa, Alabama. He is also the director of the Connected and Automated Mobility Laboratory (CAM Lab) at UA. His major research sponsors include NSF, FHWA, and US DOT. Dr. Rahman received his M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in Civil Engineering (Transportation systems), from Clemson University, in 2013 and 2018, respectively. His M.Sc. and Ph.D. research was supported by USDOT Dwight David Eisenhower Graduate Transportation Fellowships (DDETF), BMW, the National Science Foundation and the US Department of Transportation. After his graduation in August 2018, he joined as a postdoctoral research fellow for the Center for Connected Multimodal Mobility (C2M2), a U.S. Department of Transportation Tier 1 University Transportation Center. After that, Dr. Rahman has also served as an Assistant Director of C2M2and a research associate for the NSF Engineering Research Center for Computer and Network RESIliency and Security for Transportation (CAN-RESIST) planning grant. His research focuses on cyber-physical systems for connected and automated vehicles, and smart cities; transportation digital twin; transportation cybersecurity; driver behavior modeling; and AI-based predictive analytics. He was the recipient of the best paper award from the Intelligent Transportation Society (ITS) of America in 2014 ITS World Congress. Recently, he also received the 2015 IEEE ITS Society George N. Saridis Best Transactions Paper Award for Outstanding Survey.
Dr. Emily Wall is a Senior Research Engineer for the Center for Advanced Vehicular Systems Extension (CAVS-E) at Mississippi State University (MSU). She is a graduate of MSU’s Industrial and Systems engineering program for both her bachelor and doctorate degrees. She received her Six Sigma Black Belt from MSU's CAVS Extension in June 2016 and received her Professional Engineer’s (PE) licensure in 2021. Working primarily with small to medium sized manufacturing companies in Mississippi, her project work includes: facility layout and design, lean manufacturing applications, interactive training for manufacturing processes, and virtual reality trainings. Her current research involves 3D Scanning applications for VR environments and transportation applications, manufacturability and machine learning, modeling and simulations, and usability of user interfaces in virtual reality. She also participates in the teaching of workshops and classes including: Workplace Ergonomics, Minitab, and Statistical Process Control.
Stephanie Vivians, President and Principal Engineer of Myriad Engineering Solutions, LLC, graduated from Mississippi State University in 1995 with Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering. Upon graduation she began working as a Transportation Design Engineer at Neel-Schaffer, Inc. Jackson, MS. After working for Neel-Schaffer, Inc for approximately 24 years, Stephanie established Myriad Engineering Solutions, LLC.
Stephanie, a licensed Professional engineer in Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Alabama, Texas, & Georgia, has approximately 30 years of experience in roadway design, traffic engineering design, construction engineering & inspection, and water resources design. She is a member of the Mississippi Engineering Society and WTS (Women’s Transportation Seminar), Mississippi. Currently she serves as the D&I co-chair of WTS, Mississippi.
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