Keeping pace with IIE in the September 2014 issue of Industrial Engineer 

VOLUNTEER SNAPSHOT: Transgenerational assistance

Consultant finds passion preaching the IE gospel to youngsters
Bob Trainor’s grandson helped spark a new hobby and passion.Bob Trainor encourages others to reach out and expand the knowledge of industrial engineering in schools and youth organizations.  

His grandson was in fifth-grade at Lakeland Elementary School. For years, Trainor had been thinking of reaching out to schools to share his experiences in industrial engineering, hoping to light sparks in the younger generation. So in the spring, he volunteered to teach a Junior Achievement class at the school. Junior Achievement is a volunteer-driven program that teaches work readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy to students ranging from kindergarteners to 12th-graders.

“So I went through the Junior Achievement program with them, and in the last class I had asked the teacher if I could talk about our profession,” Trainor recalled. “And she was very open to that. So what I did is I dovetailed how industrial engineers serve manufacturing and distribution and other areas, and so I gave them specific examples of different companies that have and use industrial engineers broadly. And it worked very well.”

From there, Trainor talked to children in a STEM class at Bartlett High School. The small group reacted positively. As Trainor remembers, the children were interested in science, but really didn’t know much, if anything, about industrial engineering. A guidance counselor and assistant principal listened in, liked what they heard and asked Trainor about a continuing relationship in the future.He has spoken to other schools since, including sixth- and seventh-grade students at a prep school sponsored by the NBA’s Memphis Grizzlies in downtown Memphis, Tennessee.

Trainor, who has owned his consulting company Trainor and Associates for 25 years, has been an IIE member for more than four decades, starting when he left the military in February 1970 to work for A.E. Staley in Decatur, Illinois. He has been a chapter officer on and off many times, from president to vice president to treasurer, and has been particularly involved with the Memphis organization.

He encourages other IIE members to get involved with local youth organizations and schools, as he has found that many young people thirst for information about what careers each letter in STEM – science, technology, engineering and math – can lead to. Enlightening even a handful of the young people about what IEs do and how they do it is a win-win, Trainor said, and it truly invigorates him at this stage of his career.

“It just enlivens me to see the young people start to grab hold of what I’m trying to communicate,” he said. “We all have a vested interest in our young people, and anything we can do to help stimulate their learning is good for all us.”

Revealing process improvement’s future

Panels bring expertise to upcoming Lean Six Sigma Conference
Two key panel discussions will highlight the more than 60 sessions available at the Engineering Lean and Six Sigma Conference 2014.

Both highlight the future of lean and Six Sigma improvement methodologies. The conference is scheduled from Sept. 29 - Oct. 1 at Embassy Suites, Lake Buena Vista South in Orlando, Florida.

The first panel will be held from 1:45 p.m. to 3:20 p.m. Sept. 30 and is titled “What Lessons Can Be Learned from Lean Six Sigma Implementations that Have Succeeded and Failed?” Panelists will share examples of projects, followed by a discussion of best practices that are worth emulating to improve the chances of success. Participants can describe their failed projects and seek advice.

The second panel sessions, scheduled from 8:15 a.m. to 9:50 a.m. Oct. 1, is “Industry Needs for Lean-Savvy Graduates.” Organizations need process improvement skills at all levels, and students are aiming to get lean courses or certificates on their resumés.

However, adding such courses to already-crowded curricula is not easy. The panel of industry lean leaders will talk about what process improvement skills they would like new hires to have and why, followed by an open discussion on creative approaches to universities to meet those needs.

The conference also will feature three pre-conference workshops, a facility tour to Walt Disney World Resort – Textile Services, and keynote speakers from Lockheed Martin, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Western Michigan University.

For more information and to register, visit

IIE loses a competition founder and a former president

Randall P. Sadowski, an IIE senior member and fellow who founded the IIE/Arena Student Simulation Competition held every year at the IIE Annual Conference, died on May 17 in Columbus, Indiana.

Randall P. Sadowski founded the IIE/Arena Student Simulation Competition.  
William Adams Smith Jr. was president of IIE for the 1975-76 term.  

Sadowski, 71, served on the industrial engineering faculties at the University of Massachusetts and Purdue before moving to the private sector, where he held a number of senior leadership positions with Systems Modeling Corp. and Rockwell Automation.

In addition to leading the simulation competition for a number of years, he served IIE as vice president of systems integration and as president at the chapter and division levels. He also was general chair of the 1990 Winter Simulation Conference.

William Adams Smith Jr., a former president of IIE, died June 3 in Southern Pines, North Carolina.

The native of Parkersburg, West Virginia, was president of the institute from 1975 to 1976. He also served IIE as vice president, technical and division affairs; director of the Systems Engineering Division; co-chairman of the Joint National Conference (ORSA-TIMS-AIIE); director technical divisions; director of the Computer and Information Systems Division; and member of the Engineers Joint Council Information Systems Committee.

He pioneered multidisciplinary engineering computer and information systems applications at Lehigh University from 1957 to 1973 and was director of the Lehigh Computing Laboratory for 10 years. At North Carolina State University from 1973 until his 1998 retirement, he championed interdisciplinary industry-academic cooperation and was head of the industrial engineering department, director of productivity research and the extension program, coordinator of the advanced quality programs industrial extension service, and professor of industrial engineering.

Now in charge

New officers, board members step up to lead societies and divisions
A number of IIE’s societies and divisions have elected or appointed officers for 2014-2015. Each group’s president-elect goes through a three-year cycle: president-elect the first year, president the second year and past president the third year.

Computer and Information Systems Division

CIS Division members picked Gerald Knapp, an associate professor in the mechanical and industrial engineering department at Louisiana State University, as president-elect. New board members Sung Won Han, Mehdi Khazaeli and J. David Porter will serve two-year terms. All terms began on June 1.

Engineering Economy Division

The Engineering Economy Division’s new communications director is Guiping Hu, an assistant professor in the industrial and manufacturing systems engineering department at Iowa State University.

East Carolina University associate professor Gene Dixon has been appointed to the board of directors for a two-year term. Leland Blank, dean and professor of industrial engineering in the College of Engineering at the American University of Sharjah, has joined the Wellington Award Committee for a three-year term.

National University of Singapore assistant professor Chin Hon Tan will spend the next three years on the editorial board of The Engineering Economist. All terms began June 1.

Lean Division

Sharon Johnson

Sharon Johnson, an associate professor at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, has been named president-elect.

The Lean Division has four new members on its board of directors: Rajesh Joshi, director of program management for AGCO; Hung-da Wan, associate professor in the University of Texas at San Antonio; David S. Cochran, associate professor and director of the IPFW Center of Excellence in Systems Engineering; and Haleh Byrne, an industrial engineer/lean specialist at North Carolina State University.

Board terms are for two years and began April 1.

Logistics and Supply Chain Division

Rajiv Saxena

Rajiv Saxena, vice president of supply chain engineering at APL Logistics, has been appointed president-elect.

New board members are Faisal Aqlan, practitioner in prescience at the University of New Haven; Chase Murray, professor of industrial and systems engineering at Auburn University; Sheng-Hsien Gary Teng, professor of systems engineering and engineering management and director of the Center for Lean Logistics & Engineered Systems at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte; and University of New Haven associate professor and graduate coordinator Mehmet Bayram Yildirim. Their two-year terms began on April 1.

Operations Research Division

Mary E. Kurz

Members of the Operations Research Division chose industrial engineering associate professor Mary E. Kurz of Clemson University to be president-elect.

New board members are Lihui Bai, an industrial engineering assistant professor at the University of Louisville; and Nipa Phojanamongkolkij, an operations research analyst at NASA Langley Research Center.

Their two-year terms began on June 1.

Process Industries DivisionVincent Howell

Vincent Howell, manager of intellectual asset protection policy and complaints at Corning Inc., has been appointed president-elect.

Anna Olender, a senior manager of industrial engineering at Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, has been named secretary-treasurer.

Olender’s term began April 1.

Quality Control and Reliability Engineering Division

Zhenyu "James" Kong

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University associate professor Zhenyu “James” Kong has been appointed president-elect.

The QCRE Division has three new members of its board of directors whose two-year terms began June 1. They are Tongdan Jin, associate professor at Texas State University; Heidi A. Taboada, associate professor at the University of Texas at El Paso; and Pingfeng Wang, an assistant professor in the Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering at Wichita State University.

Society for Engineering and Management Systems

Suzanna "Suzie" Long

SEMS members voted Suzanna “Suzie” Long as president-elect. She is an assistant professor at the Missouri University of Science and Technology.

SEMS has three new members on its board of directors. They are Chinweike Eseonu, assistant professor at Oregon State University; Edward A. Pohl, professor and director of the Operations Management Program at the University of Arkansas; and Helmut Welke, manager of material flow design, worldwide logistics, for John Deere. Their three-year terms started June 1.

Sustainable Development Division

Eliseo Vilalta-Perdomo

Members elected Eliseo Vilalta-Perdomo, a senior lecturer of logistics and operations management at the Lincoln Business School in Lincoln, England, as president-elect.

Kate Fisher, an industrial engineering consultant with West Monroe Partners, was appointed for a three-year term on the board of directors, while Tianxing Cai was appointed for a one-year term as a student board member. All terms began June 1.

Work Systems Division

Jose Macedo

Jose Macedo, professor and chair of the industrial and manufacturing engineering (IME) department at Cal Poly State University, was appointed president-elect.

Maya Mendez-Pinero, an assistant professor in the University of Puerto Rico’s IME department, will serve for two years on the Work Systems Division’s board of directors. Her term started April 1.

Healthcare gets competition

Student simulation teams can win cash prizes and membership
Student teams can win a $2,500 first prize in the Society for Health Systems Student Simulation Competition.

FlexSim Software Products Inc. is sponsoring the event, which is new this year. The competition’s finals will take place at the next Healthcare Systems Process Improvement Conference, which is scheduled for Feb. 18-20 in Orlando, Florida. Second prize is $1,500, third prize $1,000, and each of the three finalist teams will receive $1,250 for travel expenses to the finals.

Teams of up to four industrial engineering students will solve a healthcare case study using FlexSim’s simulation software. Teams can have up to two graduate students. Contestants who are not members of IIE or the Society for Health Systems will become members of SHS, courtesy of FlexSim, if they reach the finals.

Entry forms are due Sept. 30. Teams will receive the case study in the first week of October, and solutions need to be submitted to FlexSim by Dec. 5. The three finalist teams will be notified in early January.

For more information and entry forms, visit and click on “SHS Student Simulation Competition” underneath the competitions subhead.

The contributions of youth

Deadline for DiscoverE New Faces of Engineering is Oct. 3
The contributions of youthIIE is accepting applications for the 2015 New Faces of Engineering-Professional program.

DiscoverE sponsors the program annually to honor young engineers who are making significant contributions to society and to promote the image of engineering throughout the world. Here are the IIE nomination criteria:

  • Nominees must be 30 years old or younger as of Dec. 31.
  • Nominees must be members of IIE.
  • Nominees must have a degree in industrial engineering from an ABET-accredited U.S. college or university or from an equivalent international educational institution.

The selected nominee will be featured in a national print outlet during Engineers Week Feb. 22-28, 2015, on the DiscoverE and IIE websites, and in Industrial Engineer. The nomination form and additional details are available at The deadline to submit nominations is Oct. 3.

New this year, nomination forms must be submitted online at You can access the form directly by clicking here. The deadline to submit nominations is Oct. 3. NOTE: The IIE deadline is earlier than the deadline indicated on the nomination form.

For questions about the program, criteria or nomination process, contact Monica Elliott, IIE director of communications, at or Ellen Robinson, DiscoverE online community manager, at

Nashville325x325Time for AEC abstracts

Abstracts for GOErgo’s 18th annual Applied Ergonomics Conference are due Sept. 26, and the poster session deadline is Nov. 7.

The conference is scheduled for March 16-19, 2015, at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee. Attendees will share best practices in ergonomics, healthcare, safety, human resources and risk management. The event includes networking, pre-conference workshops, keynote speakers and the chance to earn continuing education units (CEUs) and professional development hours (PDHs).

For more information and to register, visit

The reward of recognition

Deadlines are approaching for students, researchers, practitioners and academics who wish to compete for IIE honors, awards and scholarships.


A department head or faculty advisor must nominate students for IIE scholarships. The deadline is Nov. 15, except for the Society for Health Systems Scholarship, which is due Dec. 1. Scholarships and fellowships can total up to $4,000 for graduate and undergraduate student members.

Except for the John L. Imhoff Scholarship, student competitors must be IIE members, enrolled in a full-time graduate or undergraduate industrial engineering program, have a GPA of 3.4 or greater and have a graduation date of May/June 2016 or later.

Nominees will be considered based on their scholastic ability, character, leadership and potential service to the profession. For more information, visit

Honors and awards

IIE’s honors and awards recognize achievement through leadership, teaching, research, service or academic pursuit, spotlighting the accomplishments of fellow IIE members.

Nominations are now being accepted for professionals and students. The deadline is Dec. 1. Members can nominate themselves for the Innovations in Curriculum Award, but not others. However, they can let colleagues and advisors know about their interest. For more information, visit

IIE/Arena Student Simulation Competition

The IIE/Arena Student Simulation Competition allows students to showcase their skills by solving a real-world situational case study.

Teams of up to three undergraduates can win a first-place prize of $5,000, along with a $500 donation to the team’s student chapter. Second place is $2,500 and $250 for the team’s chapter, third place $1,500 for the team and $250 for the team’s chapter. Teams must use Arena, Rockwell Automation’s simulation package, to solve the problem.

The contest includes a fall and winter session: The fall deadline for entry is Sept. 30. Teams will receive the case study Oct. 13 and must turn in solutions by Dec. 5. Details about the winter session will be posted on the IIE website when available.

The three finalist teams will receive a $1,250 stipend for travel to the finals competition at the IIE Annual Conference and Expo to be held May 30 - June 2, 2015, at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee. Finals contestants who aren’t IIE members will receive a membership courtesy of Rockwell Automation.

For more details, visit and click on “Undergraduate Student Simulation Competition” underneath the competitions subhead.


Celebrating member achievements  

Michele Dekelbaum 

Michele Dekelbaum is now vice president of performance excellence at Phoebe Putney Health System in Georgia. The SEMS past president formerly was director of business performance excellence and operations support at the Baylor Health Care System in Dallas.

Way Kuo  

IIE fellow Way Kuo, professor and president of City University of Hong Kong, has been elected as a foreign member of the Russian Academy of Engineering. He is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Engineering and is believed to be the only IIE fellow ever elected as a foreign member of the Chinese Academy of Engineering.

Vidya Sagar Gautam  

Vidya Sagar Gautam has been named volunteer advisor at the Research Innovation & Commercialization (RIC) Centre, Mississauga, a nonprofit hub that supports the cities of Mississauga, Brampton and Caledon in the area of Toronto. Gautam is IIE’s immediate past regional vice president for Canada.

Dong Yeob Kim 

Dong Yeob Kim, a student at Texas Tech University, recently earned a Mitchell Scholarship from Tau Beta Pi, the engineering honor society.

Emily Forcke  

Emily Forcke, formerly a management engineer for Universal Health Services Inc., has been promoted to senior management engineer, where she will plan and execute projects across multiple hospitals and identify opportunities in the company’s acute care division.

Share your achievement

Let your peers know about hirings, promotions, awards, appointments and other notable accomplishments. Send Kudos items to Michael Hughes at