CAV 101 Seminar for Arizona Speaker Bios

Dr. Carol Atkinson-Palombo is an Associate Professor in the University of Connecticut’s Department of Geography and the Director of Environmental Studies. Having trained for five years as a National Science Foundation IGERT scholar in Urban Ecology, her specialization is in collaborating with interdisciplinary teams to pursue use-inspired policy-relevant research. Dr. Atkinson-Palombo jointly heads two research groups that focus on Sustainable Cities and Transportation Technology & Society. She uses geographical techniques such as GIS-based spatial analysis, statistical modelling, and qualitative methods to assess the impact of policies intended to promote sustainable cities, and is particularly interested in transportation sustainability because of its connection to a wide array of societal concerns such as air pollution, land use, global climate change, and social and environmental equity. An emerging area of interest is how autonomous vehicles may be deployed in various contexts and whether or not they will reinforce or replace public transportation. Dr. Atkinson-Palombo currently serves on the Task Force on Autonomous Vehicles for the State of Connecticut, a body charged with providing guidance on AV legislation. Teaching specializations include courses on Sustainable Cities, Urban Geography, Sustainability, and a capstone focused on professional development for the Environmental Studies program that she directs. She engages in a wide range of service activities for the University, as well as national and international bodies, and has a deep and abiding commitment to equity and diversity.


Matt Clark is the Director of Government Relations at Arizona Department of Transportation and former Transportation and Municipal Government Policy Adviser to Governor Doug Ducey. He works with the Arizona Department of Transportation, and the numerous local, county and state stakeholders who share an interest in the policies that affect Arizona’s transportation and local governments. In addition to transportation and municipal government, Matt also advises the Governor on public pensions and is the Chair of the Self-Driving Oversight Committee. Prior to joining the Governor’s team, Matt spent the three years working as Chief of Staff to Mesa City Council member Kevin Thompson. Matt served as the primary contact between the Council member and members of the public as well as City of Mesa staff. In his role with the city, he monitored the implementation of policy and projects initiated by the Council member and assisted the City’s intergovernmental Relations Office on specific legislative projects. Matt is a graduate of Arizona State University, having received his MBA from the WP Carey School of Business.


Dr. Lina Karam, Fellow of the IEEE, is a full Professor in the School of Electrical, Computer & Energy Engineering, Computer Engineering Director for Industry Engagement, and the Director of the Image, Video & Usability Research Laboratory at Arizona State University. She received the B.E. degree in computer and communications engineering from the American University of Beirut in 1989 and the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1992 and 1995, respectively.  

Her industrial experience includes image and video compression development at AT&T Bell Labs, Murray Hill, NJ, USA, multidimensional data processing and visualization at Schlumberger, and collaboration on signal processing, computer vision, machine learning, automated mobility, image/video processing, compression, and transmission projects with industries including Intel, Google, Qualcomm, NTT, Motorola, General Dynamics, and NASA. She has over 230 technical publications and she is a coinventor on 6 issued US patents. She is the lead PI on the I interdisciplinary ASU-Intel initiative for defining the next-generation of safe and efficient automated mobility at scale. She served as the lead ASU ADAS faculty advisor for the DoE/GM sponsored Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition (EcoCAR3) Competition. She led the development of advanced driver assistance systems, obstacle detection, forward collision warning, object recognition and tracking, depth estimation, multi-modal sensing, robust deep learning systems, 3D scene reconstruction from multiple views and from videos for situational awareness and autonomous driving. She is a recipient of the NSF CAREER, NASA Technical Innovation, Intel Outstanding Researcher, and the IEEE Phoenix Section Outstanding Faculty Awards. Karam was recently featured on FOX 10 News (October 30, 2018) in a segment on driverless cars. She is the Editor-In-Chief of the IEEE Journal on Selected Topics in Signal Processing. 

David King is an Assistant Professor at ASU's School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning, researching the codependence of transportation and land use planning along with transportation finance and economics. Of particular interest are transportation policies such as parking management, taxi services and microtransit, all of which integrate with land use planning. His work on finance examines how existing and new finance tools can raise revenues for more effective and just transportation systems. His current research focuses on taxi and jitney services, informal transit, street design, and how new technologies affect transportation finance and local policy. In addition to academic accomplishments, King is a member of the Transportation Research Board’s Paratransit Committee and frequently consults with private firms and public organizations about challenges and opportunities in passenger travel, especially with regard to demographic and technological change. King completed his doctorate at the University of California Los Angeles and a master's in urban and regional planning at the Humphrey Institute at the University of Minnesota.


Thaddeus Miller is an assistant professor at the School for the Future of Innovation in Society and The Polytechnic School at Arizona State University. His research explores how sustainability is interpreted, contested, materialized and settled in science and technology policy and infrastructure design. He is on the Executive Management Team for the National Science Foundation-funded Urban Resilience to Extremes Sustainability Research Network, and co-PI of the NSF-funded STIR Cities project. His recent book, Reconstructing Sustainability Science: Knowledge and Action for a Sustainable Future, part of the Earthscan Routledge Science in Society Series, examines how scientists can navigate epistemic and normative tensions to link knowledge to social action.


Dale Neef, the host of the CAV 101 Education Seminar, is an author and strategic technology consultant who advises organizations and communities on "Smart Cities" and autonomous vehicle infrastructure, municipal broadband, and other digital economy issues. A specialist in transportation and supply chain technologies, Dale has been a technical consultant for the Asian Development Bank, has worked for IBM and Computer Sciences Corporation, and was a fellow at Ernst & Young’s Center for Business Innovation. A veteran facilitator, he has conducted executive planning workshops with corporate and municipal teams in more than sixty organizations worldwide, and has taught at a variety of institutions, including Cornell University, the junior college and New York State prison systems, and at the International School of Management in Paris. A frequent contributor to journals, and a regular speaker at technology conferences, Dale earned his doctorate from Cambridge University, was a research fellow at Harvard, and has written or edited eight books on the economics of knowledge and data management and the role of technology in economic development and society. He is a member of the American Planning Association and the International City/County Management Association.


Ram Pendyala is a Professor in the School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment at Arizona State University where he teaches courses and conducts research in transportation systems engineering and mobility analytics. He was previously the Frederick R Dickerson Chair and Professor of Transportation Systems in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology for a period of two years between 2014 and 2016. He is an expert in the analysis of transportation systems and focuses on understanding and modeling traveler behavior and values under a wide variety of geographic, spatio-temporal, and policy scenarios. He has pioneered the development of new activity-based travel demand model systems, including the application of such models to forecast the impact of emerging and disruptive transportation technologies.