American Traffic Safety Services Association announces winners of five national awards
The American Traffic Safety Services Association has announced winners of the Industry Achievement Award, the National Safety Award, Foundation Champion Award, Mark of Excellence Award and National Media Award.
The awards were given as part of the 50th Annual Convention & Expo, which runs from Jan. 24-28 in New Orleans. The winners were announced during the 50th Anniversary Gala on Jan. 25.
Industry Achievement Award – Roger Wentz, ATSSA president and CEO.
The ATSSA Industry Achievement Award is the association’s highest honor and given to an ATSSA member who achieves distinction deemed worthy of special recognition. It honors members who have made significant contributions to ATSSA and left a mark on the roadway safety infrastructure industry.
Wentz was selected in recognition of his leadership of the Association for 22-plus years. He retires in February.
Wentz was appointed president and CEO of ATSSA in October of 1997. He is a Certified Association Executive and has served on the Board of Directors of the American Society of Association Executives. Prior to ATSSA, he held positions at the American Trucking Associations, where he founded the ATA Training Institute, and the American Bankers Association, where he had responsibility for the business operations of 21 banker divisions with total annual revenues of $32 million.
Wentz serves as staff liaison to the ATSSA Board of Directors, as the ATSSA representative to the Traffic Control Devices Pooled Fund Study, on the board of the Roadway Safety Foundation, and as Treasurer of the National Committee on Uniform Traffic Control Devices.
National Safety Award – Paul Kelley, assistant work zone safety coordinator (retired), Virginia Department of Transportation
This award recognizes an employee or recent retiree of a government agency who made a significant contribution to the safety of our nation’s highways. Kelley worked for VDOT for more than 24 years and collaborated with transportation officials across Virginia and the nation during his career. Kelley was one of the original members of the Virginia ATSSA Chapter and was instrumental in developing training and policies for VDOT and assisted ATSSA in developing its guardrail training course, which is used nationwide. His work addressed pedestrian and bicycle safety and several issues related to work zones. He spent a decade on VDOT’s work zone traffic control training program and was responsible for training more than 60,000 people on basic, intermediate and advanced work zone traffic control.
The Foundation Champion Award – Susan Reiss, longtime ATSSA member and former Foundation board member and president
The Foundation Champion Award is a new award that recognizes individuals or entities who have demonstrated extraordinary efforts in supporting The Foundation’s core purpose of promoting roadway safety through charitable giving and public awareness programs. Through their own unique combination of passion and skills, champions inspire others to get involved and give back to the industry. Reiss served on The Foundation’s board for more than a decade, including a term as president. Current President Dave Krahulec said Reiss initiated the sporting clay event and was instrumental in getting the charitable arm of ATSSA on solid footing.
Mark of Excellence Award – Harry Campbell, Virginia Department of Transportation (not pictured)
The Mark of Excellence Award is given to an ATSSA member who has made outstanding contributions to the advancement of roadway safety infrastructure through improved pavement markings. Campbell, a professional engineer who works for VDOT as the traffic control devices engineering manager, is currently chairing a NCUTCD task force on Markings for Automated Driver Assist Systems to help re-write standards for the next Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices. As a result of his leadership, pavement markings will eventually be standardized at six inches wide on interstates and freeways, and other standards such as edge lines will be 6 inches on all higher speed roads with higher volumes, to address machine vision needs. Kevin Goforth of Potters Industries nominated Campbell.
National Media Award – Dave Dildine, traffic reporter for WTOP radio in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area
Ellen Kamilakis of the Virginia Department of Transportation’s Northern Virginia District nominated Dildine for his fair, balanced and informative reporting on transportation issues.
“Dave is a unique entity at WTOP. He knows traffic. He knows incident management. He knows work zones. He knows infrastructure. He knows weather. These are all of the elements that drive our agency and industry,” Kamilakis said in nominating him. She also noted that he received a lifesaving award in 2019 for rescuing a woman who was drowning in an icy D.C. creek last January.
For more information about ATSSA’s 50th Annual Convention & Traffic Expo, visit Expo.ATSSA.com.