2016 Conference Schedule

June 6, 2016

5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. ~ Networking Reception, Hilton Garden Inn, Oakwood Room

June 7, 2016

8 a.m. – 8:30 a.m. ~ Welcoming Remarks

Dr. Dimitris Lagoudas, Deputy Director, Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station; Senior Associate Dean for Research, College of Engineering & Associate Vice Chancellor for Engineering, Texas A&M Engineering

Dr. M. Katherine Banks, Director, Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station; Vice Chancellor & Dean of Engineering, Texas A&M Engineering

8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. ~ Plenary Panel: Research Funding Insights

Lamont Hames, MSI STEM Research & Development Consortium in Partnership with the Department of Defense
Lamont Hames is a key member of the MSI STEM Research & Development Consortium (MSRDC) management team. MSRDC is a Washington, DC-based 501c(3) non-profit corporation that leads a consortium of over forty small research institutions of higher education to lead basic, applied, and advanced research projects for federal, defense and medical research laboratories located throughout the country with the mission of increasing intellectual property, patents, technology transfer and commercialization into mainstream markets. The consortium member institutions portfolio of advanced technology, labs, faculty scientists, and students from diverse backgrounds enriches the government and private sector's reach into diverse communities to access innovative science and technology, next generation STEM workforce, and to expand research-based outcomes. Hames spearheads its business and project development pipeline by engaging with federal, defense, private sector corporate foundations, and major research institutions, representing a broad range of interests including engineering, chemical and biological science, life sciences, medical, information technology and cyber security, to name a few. Hames executes relationship building strategies, tactical planning, and advises government, the private sector, and higher education officials in a manner that breakdowns barriers to entry leading to funded extramural research project awards. He is responsible for developing and executing strategies that advance the overall economic growth of the corporation. Before joining MSRDC, Hames was a business development executive for multiple small technology firms. He also served as chief of staff for NASA’s Office of Small Business Programs where his tenure spanned fifteen years. Hames has a master of science degree in management information systems from Bowie State University and a bachelor of science degree in computer science from St. Augustine’s University. Hames resides in McLean, VA with his wife and two active teenagers.

Pat Phelan, Department of Energy
Patrick (Pat) Phelan received his bachelor's degree from Tulane University in New Orleans, his master's degree from MIT, and his Ph.D. from UC Berkeley, all in mechanical engineering. Following a two-year, post-doctoral fellowship at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, he started his academic career as an assistant professor at the University of Hawaii in 1992. In 1996, he moved to Arizona State University (ASU), where he is a professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering and a senior sustainability scientist.  While on leave from ASU he served as the director of the NSF Thermal Transport Processes Program from 2000-2008. He is again on leave from ASU and is now the program manager for emerging technologies in the Building Technologies Office, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, U.S. Department of Energy.

Eyad Masad, Vice Dean of Mechanical Engineering, Texas A&M University at Qatar
Dr. Eyad Masad is vice dean at Texas A&M at Qatar. He has been with Texas A&M University for 13 years and is responsible for providing leadership to the academic, research, and outreach missions of the campus as well as to its administrative and financial functions. As vice dean, Masad has a leading role in creating and executing the campus’ long-term strategic plan, which includes a commitment to integrating transformative educational experiences, global experiences, leadership development, and innovation into the engineering curriculum at Texas A&M at Qatar. He has considerable experience in curriculum development, pedagogy, and effective learning techniques. Prior to becoming vice dean, Masad served as assistant dean for research and graduate studies, during which he supervised the tremendous growth research funding as well as the development of strategic areas and centers. Masad is a professor of engineering at Texas A&M’s branch campus in Qatar (Mechanical Engineering) and the main campus in the United States (Civil Engineering), where he holds the prestigious Zachry Professorship in Design and Construction Integration. Masad’s research focuses on microstructure characterization and constitutive modeling of materials; transport in porous media; granular mechanics; and image analysis techniques. He has published more than 300 technical papers and reports. Masad is a fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) as well as the recipient of several prestigious awards from academic institutions and professional organizations for his teaching, research and service contributions.  

Kendall T. Harris, Dean of Engineering, Prairie View A&M University
Kendall T. Harris, Ph.D., P.E., was appointed the dean of the College of Engineering at Prairie View A&M University in the fall of 2007. As dean, Harris serves as the chief administrative officer in all matters related to academic, faculty, and student affairs. He is also responsible for fund development, policy compliance, and student recruitment and retention. A licensed professional engineer, Harris began his tenure at Prairie View A&M University in 2005 as associate dean and professor of mechanical engineering. Under his leadership as associate dean, the college implemented the College of Engineering Success Center, which focuses on the retention of engineering students by offering supplemental instruction for freshman and sophomore students enrolled in math, science, and engineering courses. He also conceptualized and facilitated a program that partners freshman advisors from each academic department within the college with advisors from the university’s freshman residence complex, University College. Prior to joining the faculty at Prairie View A&M University, Harris served as associate professor and associate chairman for the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at the University of Texas at Arlington. In this capacity, he managed the departmental budget, curriculum design, fellowships, and scholarships. He graduated from the Naval Aviation Officer School as a U.S. Naval Officer and aviator. Harris received his master’s and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering from the University of Mississippi and holds bachelor degrees from the University of Kansas. He is married to Shundra Harris who is also an engineer, turned interior designer. They reside in Cypress, TX, and have two sons.

John A. Barton, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Strategic Initiatives, Texas A&M Engineering
John A. Barton, P.E., is a professor of practice for the Zachry Department of Civil Engineering at Texas A&M University and Assistant Vice Chancellor for Strategic Initiatives. In these roles John provides direction, guidance, and advice for the College of Engineering departments and their faculty to integrate the collective assets of The Texas A&M University System to generate ideas that address critical challenges to the state and nation. He also provides classroom instruction to educate students through lectures and seminars focused on leadership, public administration, and emerging transportation technologies. He is responsible for working on a variety of initiatives, initially focusing on the following four priority projects. 

  • Assist with the development and deployment of plans for the redevelopment of the Riverside campus into a world-class, multi-disciplinary public-private research facility. 
  • Assist with the development of plans to transform the approach to transportation allowed on the main Texas A&M campus to make it a greener, more pedestrian and bicycle friendly campus. 
  • Coordinate the entirety of the Texas A&M System entities' activities related to autonomous and connected vehicles to elevate the Texas A&M System to a position of a recognized world leader in these emerging fields. 
  • Assist in developing strategies and deployment plans to advance the Area 41 research initiative to a higher level of maturity and success.

Barton recently retired as the deputy executive director of the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) where he provided executive control and oversight of all TxDOT operations and the management and operation of the state’s transportation system. He held a variety of positions with TxDOT in two TxDOT districts as well as the agency’s central administration during his 30 years of state service including area engineer, director of transportation planning and development, district engineer and assistant executive director for engineering operations. Barton graduated with honors with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering from Texas A&M University in 1986.

9:30 a.m. – 9:45 a.m.  ~ Breakout Session Overview and Expectations*

9:45 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. ~ Networking Break

10:00 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. ~ Breakout Sessions

  • Energy Systems & Services
  • Healthcare
  • Cybersecurity

11:15 a.m. - 11:20 a.m. ~ Transition to the Next Session

11:20 a.m. – 12:35 p.m. ~ Breakout Sessions

  • Materials & Manufacturing and Infrastructure
  • Information Systems & Sensors

12:35 p.m. – 1:45 p.m. ~ Luncheon Keynote: State Representative Kyle Kacal
Kyle Kacal was first elected to the Texas House of Representatives in 2012 to serve and represent House District 12. The district is comprised of Falls, Limestone, and Robertson counties and portions of Brazos and McLennan. During the most recent legislative session, Representative Kacal was appointed to the House Committees on Natural Resources and Environmental Regulation, and served as the Vice Chair of the House Committee on Rules and Resolutions. Representative Kacal graduated from Texas A&M University in 1992 and received a Certificate of Ranch Management from Texas Christian University. He owns and operates a large-scale cattle business, focusing on breeding and raising beef cattle as well as a full-service hunting business during the fall and spring. He is devoted to preserving the land and contributing to local and state economies through his dynamic ranching business. Representative Kacal and his wife, Marci, have two children, Carter and Kendall. The family is actively involved in the St. Thomas Aquinas church.

1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. ~ Reports from 3 Breakout Sessions – 20 Minutes Each

2:45 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. ~ Networking Break

3:00 p.m. – 3:40 p.m. ~ Reports from 2 Breakout Sessions – 20 Minutes Each

3:40 p.m. – 4 p.m. ~ Wrap-Up & Closing Remarks

4 p.m. ~ Adjourn

* 9:30 a.m. - 3 p.m. ~ Resource Tables Open

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