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Events and Public Meetings

Speakers: NHTSA Safety Research Portfolio Public Meeting

October 19 - October 21, 2021


View the agenda and register for the event


October 19

Opening Remarks

Steven Cliff Headshot

Dr. Steven Cliff, Acting Administrator of NHTSA, oversees the nation’s vehicle safety agency that conducts research and sets vehicle safety standards, identifies safety defects and manages recalls, and educates Americans to help them drive, ride, and walk safely. NHTSA’s work also includes establishing fuel economy regulations and helping facilitate the testing and deployment of advanced vehicle technologies. 

Tim Johnson Headshot

Tim Johnson is the director of NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center. He is the lead organizer for this year’s research public meeting.

 


Advanced Driver Assistance Systems Research

Dee Williams Headshot

Dee Williams serves as the deputy associate administrator for NHTSA’s vehicle safety research office. She leads the development and implementation of vehicle safety research initiatives, including policy, strategic and program planning, and program assessments. This work helps advance national highway traffic safety programs and motor vehicle safety standards related to the integration of innovative technologies and emerging roadway safety issues. Williams has been with the USDOT for nearly 20 years.  

Devin ElsasserHeadshot

Devin Elsasser is a mechanical engineer in the applied crash avoidance division at NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center. For nearly 15 years, Elsasser has been engaged in crash avoidance and heavy vehicle test track and simulation research, vehicle safety research, vehicle safety standards, and test track procedure development for the agency. 

Stephen StaskoHeadshot

Stephen Stasko has been a general engineer with NHTSA’s vehicle safety research team for 10 years. During this time, he has overseen research into advanced driver assistance systems, including vehicle sensors, benefits estimation and connected vehicle crash avoidance. 

Chris WiacekHeadshot

Chris Wiacek is a general engineer with NHTSA’s National Center for Statistics and Analysis, which is responsible for providing a wide range of analytical and statistical support to the agency and the highway safety community. He has been with the agency for nearly 20 years and his work has spanned enforcement, vehicle safety research, and vehicle safety standards development. 

Garrick Forkenbrock

Garrick Forkenbrock has been performing research at NHTSA for more than 25 years, and has managed a variety of light- and heavy-vehicle research programs at the agency’s Vehicle Research and Test Center. His most recent research responsibilities include the evaluation of advanced driver assistance system technologies, specializing in the development of the methods used to accurately, objectively, and practically assess their performance. 

Aaron GreenwoodHeadshot

Aaron Greenwood is a general engineer in the intelligent technologies research division at NHTSA. His work focuses on advanced driver assistance systems with particular focus on heavy vehicles and vulnerable road users.


Human Factors Research

Stacy Balk Headshot

Dr. Stacy Balk joined NHTSA in 2019 as the division chief for human factors research within the agency’s vehicle crash avoidance and electronic controls office. Her work has focused on human factors research related to highway safety and operations, traffic engineering, and intelligent transportation systems. 

Eric Traube Headshot

Eric Traube is a senior engineer for the human factors/engineering integration division within NHTSA’s crash avoidance and electronic controls office. He manages various research activities related to advanced driver interfaces, crash avoidance technologies, impaired driving, automated vehicles, driver distraction, vulnerable road users, accessibility and driver monitoring systems.  

Christian Jerome Headshot

Dr. Christian Jerome is a research psychologist for NHTSA’s human factors/engineering integration division. He manages research programs, overseeing multi-disciplinary teams exploring human centered topics in vehicle automation, driver attention and distraction, vehicle warnings, driver-vehicle interface, vehicle and roadway safety, and future trends in automated mobility. His work impacts industry, research, and public policy through the advancement of safe and effective evolution of new automotive technologies.  

Kathy Sifrit 

Dr. Kathy Sifrit is a research psychologist in the injury prevention research Division of NHTSA’s behavioral safety research office. She has been with NHTSA since 2006 and focuses on older driver safety and on drivers’ interactions with vehicle automation. 

Thomas Fincannon Headshot

Thomas Fincannon is a human factors engineer in NHTSA’s vehicle safety research office, where he works on a variety of projects that examine the impact of in-vehicle systems on driver performance. His research background includes human performance with a variety of systems across domains that include highway traffic safety, aviation, and military applications.


ADS Research

Robert Kreeb Headshot

Robert Kreeb is the chief for the electronic systems safety research division within NHTSA’s vehicle safety research office. His division focuses on conducting safety research related to cybersecurity, automated driving systems and connected vehicle communications. Such research includes identifying best practices for enhancing cybersecurity and resiliency for vehicles, developing objective methods and metrics for evaluating the safety performance of automated driving systems, and researching deployment challenges associated with connected vehicle safety communications. 

Sebastian Silvani Headshot

Sebastian Silvani is a program manager in the electronics safety systems research division at NHTSA. His research projects focus on assessment of automated driving systems safety, including perception systems and vehicle on road testing. Silvani has over 25 years of experience in research and implementation of automotive technologies. 

Alrik Svenson Headshot

Alrik Svenson is a research engineer in the electronics systems safety research division at NHTSA. He has been with NHTSA since 1998 and currently manages research projects in crash avoidance and automated driving systems safety. Previously, he worked on research in heavy vehicle safety, vehicle safety communications, stability control systems for light and heavy vehicles, and tires.  

Paul Rau Headshot

Dr. Paul Rau is an engineering research psychologist at NHTSA. He serves as a program manager for vehicle automation safety projects in NHTSA’s electronic systems safety division. His projects address road vehicle safety through automation in the areas of human factors, functional safety, testing validation, remote operations, and artificial intelligence.  

Scott Schnelle Headshot

Dr. Scott Schnelle is a mechanical engineer in the applied crash avoidance division at NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center. His responsibilities includes researching test track and simulation crash avoidance, automated vehicle safety research, and test track procedure development for the agency. 

Devin Elsasser Headshot

Devin Elsasser is a mechanical engineer in the applied crash avoidance division at NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center. For nearly 15 years, Elsasser has been engaged in crash avoidance and heavy vehicle test track and simulation research, vehicle safety research, vehicle safety standards, and test track procedure development for the agency.

Jay Chen Headshot

Jay Chen is a research engineer in the electronic systems safety division at NHTSA. He currently manages projects in the areas of automated driving systems on-road testing, preventive maintenance and fleet operational safety. Previously, he worked for 25 years in the automotive industry in various roles including crash safety, consulting, sales, and analytics. 


Vehicle Cybersecurity and Electronics

Frank BarickmanHeadshot

Frank Barickman is the division chief for the applied crash avoidance division at NHTSA's Vehicle Research and Test Center. He manages and executes crash avoidance research, such as cybersecurity and advanced safety systems. Barickman has been with NHTSA since 1998 when he worked as an electrical engineer in the division he currently leads. 

John MartinHeadshot

John Martin is a researcher at NHTSA's Vehicle Research and Test Center. He focuses on vehicle cybersecurity.  

Darryl Shepard

Darryl Shepard is a general engineer at NHTSA in the electronic systems safety division within the vehicle crash avoidance and electronic controls office. He manages several research projects related to vehicle cybersecurity and cyber resilience. 


Day 1 Closing

Cem Hatipoglu Headshot

Dr. Cem Hatipoglu, NHTSA’s Associate Administrator for Vehicle Safety Research, is responsible for the agency’s vehicle safety research activities, which are focused on achieving NHTSA’s mission of reducing fatalities and injuries caused by motor vehicle crashes. This work includes developing and conducting research on driving automation, vehicle cybersecurity, vehicle connectivity, and vehicle crash safety. 

October 20

Day 2 Opening Remarks

Nanda Srinivasan Headshot

Nanda Srinivasan, NHTSA’s Associate Administrator for Research and Program Development, oversees four offices that formulate, implement, and evaluate traffic safety programs. His team provides national leadership and technical assistance in the identification, research, planning, development, demonstration, implementation, evaluation, and dissemination of highway safety programs. The programs are designed to prevent or reduce traffic-related crashes and the resulting deaths, injuries, property damage, and associated costs.


Speeding and Speed Management

Randolph Atkins Headshot

Dr. Randolph Atkins is the chief of NHTSA’s behavioral research division. He is also a member of the U.S. DOT intermodal speed team and the Transportation Research Board’s traffic law enforcement committee. Atkins’ primary research areas are speeding and speed management, and drug and alcohol impaired driving. His work on speeding at NHTSA includes studies on automated speed enforcement, driver feedback devices, motivations for speeding, and traffic speed surveys.  

Cherian Varghese Headshot

Cherian Varghese is a traffic safety data analyst at NHTSA. He works for the data reporting and information division within the traffic records and analysis office, which is part of NHTSA’s National Center for Statistics and Analysis. Varghese has more than 20 years of experience in working with motor vehicle traffic crash data. He is involved in responding to numerous data queries and requests annually.  

Trisann Jodon Headshot

TrisAnn Jodon is a program analyst for the Fatality Analysis Reporting System within NHTSA’s National Center for Statistics and Analysis. She oversees fatal crash data collection and analysis in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and ensures timely and accurate data. Since joining NHTSA in 2005, Jodon has focused efforts on improving data collection processes and developing methods that strengthen quality control operations.

Stacy Jeleniewski Headshot

Dr. Stacy Jeleniewski is a research psychologist in NHTSA’s behavioral safety research office. Her primary research areas are speeding/speed management and impaired driving. 


Risky Driving Behaviors

Rory AustinHeadshot

Dr. Rory Austin joined NHTSA nearly 20 years ago as a mathematical statistician. After holding several positions, in 2015 he became chief of the injury prevention research division within NHTSA’s behavioral safety research office. He leads a team of research psychologists who study behaviors and attitudes in highway safety to promote the development and refinement of traffic safety countermeasures. 

Amy Berning 

Amy Berning is a research psychologist within NHTSA’s behavioral safety research office. She has conducted research with NHTSA for 30 years with a focus on alcohol- and drug-impaired driving. Her research includes problem identification and evaluation of the impact of impaired-driving laws, sanctions, and programs. Berning’s work includes the national roadside surveys of alcohol and drugs and examining the prevalence of drugs in seriously injured road users.  

Jordan Blenner Headshot

Dr. Jordan Blenner is a social science researcher in NHTSA’s behavioral safety research office. Her work has primarily focused on distracted and drowsy driving. 
 

Christine Watson Headshot

Dr. Christine Watson is a research psychologist in NHTSA’s behavioral safety research office. Her work has primarily focused on novice-driver safety. 

 

Kathryn Wochinger Headshot

Dr. Kathryn Wochinger is a research psychologist in NHTSA’s behavioral safety research office. Since she joined NHTSA in 2013, Wochinger has conducted research on motorcycle safety and impaired driving. 

 


Vulnerable Road Users

Rodney Rudd Headshot

Dr. Rodney Rudd has been a mechanical engineer in NHTSA's human injury research division for more than 15 years. He is the program manager for the crash injury research and engineering network, providing overall technical and administrative leadership. 

John Brophy Headshot

John Brophy has been with NHTSA for more than 25 years and has more than 35 years of experience with crash investigations and highway safety. He has worked in every facet of crash investigation and is currently the chief of NHTSA's crash investigation division where he is responsible for all in-depth crash investigations and the management of a nationwide network of crash investigators. 

Heath Albrecht Headshot

Heath Albrecht has been with NHTSA since 2013, working in the applied crash avoidance research division as a research engineer. Albrecht’s recent research has focused on advanced driver assistance systems and more specifically, pedestrian crash avoidance and mitigation.  

Kristie Johnson Headshot

Dr. Kristie Johnson is a research psychologist in NHTSA’s behavioral safety research office. Since joining NHTSA in 2010, Johnson has primarily conducted research on pedestrian and bicyclist safety.  
 

Jason Stammen Headshot 

Dr. Jason Stammen is a mechanical engineer in the applied biomechanics division at NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center. Since joining NHTSA in 2001, Stammen has conducted projects spanning a wide range of occupant safety topics, including pedestrian protection, child crash dummy development, rear impact, and studies investigating human response and injury tolerance. 

Whitney Tatem Headshot

Whitney Tatem joined NHTSA is a research engineer in NHTSA’s crashworthiness structures and restraints division and works on many areas of passenger vehicle crashworthiness. Her main research focuses are pedestrian protection, WorldSID evaluation, electric vehicle safety, crashworthiness considerations for automated driving systems, and crashworthiness for out-of-position occupants.


Alternative Fuels Research

Steve Summers Headshot

Steve Summers joined NHTSA in 1990. He is the director for the crashworthiness research office, and he oversees NHTSA research activities for alternative fuels. Summers has worked in vehicle safety research for more than 30 years.

Stefanie Goodwin 

Stefanie Goodwin is an engineer in NHTSA’s crashworthiness standards office. Goodwin is responsible for technical, regulatory, and policy-related issues regarding electric vehicle safety. Her experience spans aerospace and automotive engineering industry. 

Whitney Tatem Headshot

Whitney Tatem joined NHTSA is a research engineer in NHTSA’s crashworthiness structures and restraints division and works on many areas of passenger vehicle crashworthiness. Her main research focuses are pedestrian protection, WorldSID evaluation, electric vehicle safety, crashworthiness considerations for automated driving systems, and crashworthiness for out-of-position occupants.

David Bryson Headshot

David Bryson is part of the EMS office at NHTSA and is responsible for developing and revising formal EMS clinician education. His responsibilities also include ground ambulance safety and liaison to the fire service.  

Ian Hall Headshot

Ian Hall is a research engineer in NHTSA’s structures and restraints division. His research focuses on unconventional child seating environments, vehicle compatibility in unoccupied automated driving systems, alternative fuel safety, and general child occupant protection. 


Day 2 Closing

Essie Wagner Headshot

Essie Wagner is the director of the behavioral safety research office at NHTSA. Through the years, she developed expertise in the areas of safe systems, older drivers, and pedestrian safety issues. Prior to joining NHTSA nearly 25 years ago, Wagner worked at the Federal Highway Administration’s Turner Fairbank Highway Research Center doing human factors safety research. 

October 21

Day 3 Opening Remarks

Cem HatipogluHeadshot

Dr. Cem Hatipoglu, NHTSA’s Associate Administrator for Vehicle Safety Research, is responsible for the agency’s vehicle safety research activities, which are focused on achieving NHTSA’s mission of reducing fatalities and injuries caused by motor vehicle crashes. This work includes developing and conducting research on driving automation, vehicle cybersecurity, vehicle connectivity, and vehicle crash safety. 


Female Crash Safety

Matthew Craig Headshot

Dr. Matthew Craig is the chief of the human injury research division at NHTSA. He oversees various efforts including field data collection and analysis of real-world injury cases, experimental research of human response/injury tolerance and development/application of finite element human body models. 

Ellen Lee Headshot

Ellen Lee is a mechanical engineer in the human injury research division at NHTSA. Her research focuses on female crash safety and the development of the THOR 5th crash dummy. She has worked in the field of injury biomechanics for more than 15 years. 

Jon Atwood Headshot

Jon Atwood is a mathematical statistician for NHTSA’s National Center for Statistics and Analysis. He has published work on research in naturalistic driving and human factors experiments.  
 

Jacob Enriquez Headshot

Jacob Enriquez is a statistician in the mathematical analysis division at NHTSA. In this role, he develops prediction and reliability models from NHTSA's crash data as well as oversee NHTSA's seat belt observational surveys. 

Erik Takhounts 

Dr. Erik Takhounts has been with NHTSA for more than 20 years. During this time, he has primarily led a team of engineers engaged in various fields of mathematical modeling including finite element modeling, design of experiments, machine learning, neural networks, and injury criteria development. 

Erin Hutter Headshot

Dr. Erin Hutter is a biomechanics research engineer at NHTSA. She has nearly 20 years of experience in the fields of biomechanics and automotive safety. Her current research interests include improving the biofidelity of small female and pediatric ATDs, as well as statistical and finite element modeling.  


ADS Crash Safety

Dan Parent Headshot

Dan Parent is a mechanical engineer in the human injury research division of NHTSA’s vehicle safety research office. Since joining NHTSA, he has been involved in all aspects of the THOR crash test dummy, including development, evaluation, simulation and testing at a component, sled, and vehicle level, data analysis, and implementation.  

Jason Stammen Headshot 

Dr. Jason Stammen is a mechanical engineer in the applied biomechanics division at NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center. Since joining NHTSA, he has conducted projects spanning a wide range of occupant safety topics, including pedestrian protection, child crash dummy development, rear impact, and studies investigating human response and injury tolerance. 

Ian Hall Headshot

Ian Hall is a research engineer in NHTSA’s structures and restraints division. His research focuses on unconventional child seating environments, vehicle compatibility in unoccupied automated driving systems, alternative fuel safety, and general child occupant protection. 


Advanced Crash Test Dummies

Kevin Moorhouse Headshot

Dr. Kevin Moorhouse is the chief of the applied biomechanics division at NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center in East Liberty, Ohio. Since joining NHTSA in 2007, Moorhouse has conducted and overseen a wide range of projects, with research focuses in advanced crash test dummy development/evaluation, generation of biofidelity corridors and injury risk curves from PMHS testing, and development of quantitative methods for assessing the biofidelity of crash test dummies. 

Dan Parent Headshot

Dan Parent is a mechanical engineer in the human injury research division of NHTSA’s vehicle safety research office. Since joining NHTSA, he has been involved in all aspects of the THOR crash test dummy, including development, evaluation, simulation and testing at a component, sled, and vehicle level, data analysis, and implementation.  

Jason Stammen Headshot 

Dr. Jason Stammen is a mechanical engineer in the applied biomechanics division at NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center. Since joining NHTSA in 2001, Stammen has conducted projects spanning a wide range of occupant safety topics, including pedestrian protection, child crash dummy development, rear impact, and studies investigating human response and injury tolerance. 

Dan Rhule Headshot

Dan Rhule has been a mechanical engineer with NHTSA’s applied biomechanics division for nearly 25 years. His research activities have included dummy design and development with recent projects focusing on the WorldSID family of dummies and the Q3s. 

Heather Rhule Headshot

Heather Rhule is a research engineer in the applied biomechanics division of NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center, where she’s worked for nearly 25 years. Her research has included lateral versus oblique thoracic response, side impact dummy evaluations, biofidelity ranking system development, subdural hematoma injury risk curve development, and most recently, RibEye evaluation in the WorldSID-50M. 


Occupant Protection

Allison Louden Headshot

Allison Louden has worked as a mechanical engineer at NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center for 20 years. Her work includes many crashworthiness areas, including side impact testing, child safety, frontal impact testing, rear seat safety, and advanced dummy seating procedures. 

James Saunders Headshot

James Saunders has been an engineer with NHTSA for nearly 25 years. His main area of research is frontal crashworthiness. 

 

Kedryn Wietholter Headshot

Kedryn Wietholter is an engineer in the applied crashworthiness and defects analysis division at NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center. She has worked on various crashworthiness areas, including restraints, child occupant protection, and rear seat safety.  

Whitney TatemHeadshot 

Whitney Tatem joined NHTSA is a research engineer in NHTSA’s crashworthiness structures and restraints division and works on many areas of passenger vehicle crashworthiness. Her main research focuses are pedestrian protection, WorldSID evaluation, electric vehicle safety, crashworthiness considerations for automated driving systems, and crashworthiness for out-of-position occupants.

Aloke Prasad Headshot

Aloke Prasad has worked as a mechanical engineer at NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center for more than 30 years. His work has included many crashworthiness areas, including frontal impacts, advanced air bags, rear seat safety, motorcoach safety, ejection mitigation, and battery safety.  

Peter Martin Headshot

Dr. Peter Martin leads various research projects at NHTSA. His key responsibility is research on how vehicle safety systems affect occupant safety. This work supports the development of all 200-series Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards. Martin's prior roles at NHTSA include assignments in the rulemaking office and the biomechanics division, mostly involving the development of standardized crash test dummies. 


Closing Remarks

Tim Johnson Headshot

Tim Johnson is the director of NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center. He is the lead organizer for this year’s research public meeting.