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Advisory Board Members

James E. (Gene) Bottoms

Gene Bottoms has served as Director of the Southern Regional Education Board's High Schools That Work initiative since 1987. In July 1997, Gene was promoted to Senior Vice President of the Southern Regional Education Board, reflecting his role in and SREB's interest in and commitment to improve high schools for career-bound students. The program involves over 1,000 high schools in over 32 states. Numerous other states and school districts throughout the nation are adopting the HSTW goals and key practices as a way to improve high school for all youth, especially career-bound youth. Prior to joining the Southern Regional Education Board, Gene served as Executive Director of the American Vocational Association, where he emphasized academics as an integral part of vocational education at the secondary and postsecondary levels. Bottoms served as Director of Educational Improvement for the Georgia Department of Education for 13 years, overseeing improvement efforts in both vocational and academic education. In September 1995, Gene received the Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize in Education. This award is presented annually to individuals who have made significant contributions to the advancement of knowledge through education. In 2000, Gene was appointed to the National Commission on the Senior Year. Gene has been a local school teacher, principal and guidance counselor. He is a native of Georgia and a product of its public school system.

Steven M. Cramer

Steven Cramer received a B.S. in Civil & Environmental Engineering (Structures) (with Honors) from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1979, an M.S. in Civil Engineering (Structures – Solid Mechanics) from Colorado State University in 1981 and a Ph.D. also in Civil Engineering (Structures – Solid Mechanics) from Colorado State University in 1984. In 1984, he joined the faculty of the University of Wisconsin as an Assistant Professor with promotions to Associate Professor with tenure in 1990 and to Professor in 1996. Since 1990 Dr. Cramer has also been the Director of the Wisconsin Laboratory for Structures and Materials Testing – a structural testing facility each year serving 600 students, numerous faculty and an array of private organizations. He was appointed the Assoc. Dean of Academic Affairs for the College of Engineering in 2006 and is responsible for academic programs and services in the College. In 1996, 1998, 1999, 2004, 2005 and 2006 the UW ASCE Student Chapter named him as its Outstanding Professor. In 2001 he was elected as a Fellow to the Univ. of Wisconsin Teaching Academy and in 2002 he received the University of Wisconsin Chancellor’s Distinguished Teaching Award – the first UW Civil Engineering faculty to receive the award since the award’s inception in 1974.  

Robert Mathieu

Bob Mathieu has been on the faculty of the Department of Astronomy of the University of Wisconsin-Madison since 1987. He was educated at Princeton University and the University of California-Berkeley, after which he became a Fellow of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. He has received a Presidential Young Investigator award and a Guggenheim Fellowship for his research into the dynamics of star clusters and the formation of binary stars. He presently serves as President of the Board of Directors of the WIYN Observatory. Recently, Bob has also led national initiatives for the improvement of science higher education. From 1998 to 2000 he was the Associate Director of the National Institute for Science Education, and led the development of the Field-tested Learning Assessment Guide (FLAG) and other resources for science, engineering, and mathematics faculty ( He is presently the Director of the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning, a 5-year National Science Foundation Center for Learning and Teaching, focused on the preparation of science, engineering, and math graduate students for future roles as both forefront researchers and skilled teachers and communicators.

Philip R. O'Leary

Philip R. O'Leary is chair of the University of Wisconsin–Madison Department of Engineering Professional Development (EPD), the technical outreach program responsible for meeting the continuing education needs of practicing professionals in a range of disciplines including civil infrastructure, transportation, building design, and related areas. He oversees delivery of over 400 continuing education courses attended by more than 15,000 students each year. The program delivers training at multiple locations throughout the U.S. and over the Internet. Recent EPD accomplishments include creation of three Internet-delivered master’s degrees in engineering. Dr. O’Leary’s professional interests focus on solid waste management.  

Tamara Moore

Tamara J. Moore, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor of Mathematics/Engineering Education and co-director of the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) Education Center at the University of Minnesota. Dr. Moore is a former high school mathematics teacher and her research interests are centered on the integration of STEM concepts through contextual problem solving in the mathematics and engineering classroom. She has been developing curricular tools and researching professional development and student learning in this area. Dr. Moore is the principal investigator on the collaborative NSF-funded project, /Improving Engineering Students' Learning Strategies through Models and Modeling/ (NSF DUE CCLI Phase 3). This is a large-scale, four-year research project between seven major universities: University of Pittsburgh, University of Minnesota, US Air Force Academy, Colorado School of Mines, Purdue University, California Polytechnic State University, and Pepperdine University. The purpose of the research is for the implementation of models and modeling as a foundation for undergraduate STEM curriculum and assessment, especially within engineering domains. Dr. Moore specifically creates and researches modeling tasks in the electrical and computer engineering domain, modifies the modeling tasks created through the grant for the K-12 level, and researches the implementation of the tasks. She is also co-principal investigator on the NSF-funded project, /Reach For The Sky (RFTS): Integrating Technology into STEM Outcomes for American Indian Youth/ (NSF ITEST). This is an innovative education program striving to make STEM more culturally relevant to Anishinabe middle grades students. RFTS students learn modern science, math and engineering through traditional American Indian stories and hands-on inquiry-based activities. Before coming to the University of Minnesota, Dr. Moore received her Ph.D. from the School of Engineering Education at Purdue University.  

Harvey Palmer

Dr. Harvey Palmer became the Dean of the Kate Gleason College of Engineering in 2000 after a successful academic career at the University of Rochester where he rose through the professorial ranks, was Associate Dean for Graduate Studies in their engineering college for six years, and served for nearly ten years as chair of the Chemical Engineering Department. He also was a member of the core team that founded the Biomedical Engineering Department at the U of R. He is also a two-time winner of Undergraduate Teaching Award in the College of Engineering at the U of R. Harvey is committed to increasing the number of our nation’s youth who study engineering, especially women and other underrepresented populations. He is especially proud to be a part of the team that conceived of RIT’s Women in Engineering program (WE@RIT) and helped it grow into a positive force for attracting and retaining women in the profession. The strong sense of community that is fostered by WE@RIT programs is having a major beneficial impact on all students in the college. Harvey is on the national advisory board of Project Lead the Way, a comprehensive national program to bring engineering principles into high school curricula to inspire young men and women to pursue an engineering career. Harvey also is past president of the Rochester Engineering Society, is a member of the NYS Licensure Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors, and has served on the Board of Directors of Transcat, Inc. since 1987. He has a BS in chemical engineering from the University of Rochester (1967) and PhD in chemical engineering from the University of Washington (Seattle) in 1971. His research specialty is in the general area of interfacial phenomena and mass transport processes.

James Pellegrino

James W. Pellegrino is currently a Distinguished Professor in Psychology and Education and Co-Director of the Center for the Study of Learning, Instruction and Teacher Development at the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he joined the faculty in the Fall of 2001. From 1989-2001, he was Frank W. Mayborn Professor of Cognitive Studies at Vanderbilt University, where he also served as Dean of Vanderbilt’s Peabody College of Education and Human Development (1992-1998) and as co-director of the Learning Technology Center (1989-1992). He has been engaged in research and development activities related to children's and adult's thinking and learning and the implications for assessment and instructional practice for over twenty five years. His initial work focused on the assessment of aptitude and intelligence and the application of cognitive theory to the analysis, redesign and utilization of standardized test instruments. He is especially well known for his research on inductive reasoning and spatial ability. . Increasingly he has focused on the role of technology in educational reform and teacher education, and translating results from the research arena into implications for practicioners and policy makers.
He has supervised several large-scale research and development projects funded by agencies such as NSF, ONR, AFOSR, NIH, OERI, and the James S. McDonnell Foundation. He has authored or co-authored over 185 books, chapters and journal articles in the areas of cognition, instruction and assessment and has made numerous presentations at local, state, national and international meetings. He has served on various regional and national boards, committees of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education, the American Psychological Association, the American Educational Research Association, and as an elected member of AERA’s Governing Council. Recently, he served as chair of the National Research Council/National Academy of Sciences Study Committee for the Evaluation of the National and State Assessments of Educational Progress, and co-chair of the NRC/NAS Study Committee on Learning Research and Educational Practice. Currently, he is co-chair of the NRC/NAS Study Committee on Cognitive Science Foundations for Assessment.

Teri Reed-Rhodes

Teri Reed-Rhoades is Assistant Dean of Engineering for Undergraduate Education and Associate Professor in the Department of Engineering Education at Purdue University. In addition, she is director of the institute for P–12 engineering research and learning (INSPIRE). She received her Ph.D. in industrial engineering from Arizona State University. Dr. Reed–Rhoads' teaching interests include engineering statistics, quality engineering and introductory freshman engineering courses. Her research interests include statistics education, concept inventory development, assessment and evaluation of learning and programs, recruitment and retention topics, diversity, equity, and P–12 engineering education outreach. She has received funding from a number of National Science Foundation programs, the Department of Education, various foundations, and industry. She is an active participant in the American Society for Engineering Education, the American Educational Research Association, and the Institute of Electronics and Electrical Engineers as well as being a member of the Institute of Industrial Engineers and the American Statistical Association.

Sherri Sheppard

Sheri D. Sheppard, Ph.D., P.E., is the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching Consulting Senior Scholar principally responsible for the Preparations for the Professions Program (PPP) engineering study, the results of which are forthcoming in the report Educating Engineers: Designing for the Future of the Field. In addition, she is professor of Mechanical Engineering at Stanford University, and served as Chair of Stanford's Faculty Senate in 2006-2007. Besides teaching both undergraduate and graduate design-related classes at Stanford University, she conducts research on weld and solder-connect fatigue and impact failures, fracture mechanics, and applied finite element analysis. Dr. Sheppard was recently named co-principal investigator on a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to form the Center for the Advancement of Engineering Education (CAEE), along with faculty at the University of Washington, Colorado School of Mines, and Howard University. She was co-principal investigator with Professor Larry Leifer on a multi-university NSF grant that was critically looking at engineering undergraduate curriculum (Synthesis), and from 1997-1999 served as co-director of Stanford's Learning Lab. Sheri is a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineering (ASME), the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), and the American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE). She was awarded the 2004 ASEE Chester F. Carlson Award in recognition of distinguished accomplishments in engineering education, and the 2005 ASEE Wickenden Best Journal of Engineering Education Paper Award. Before coming to Stanford University, she held several positions in the automotive industry, including senior research engineer at Ford Motor Company's Scientific Research Lab. Dr. Sheppard's graduate work was done at the University of Michigan.

Jennifer Turns

Jennifer Turns is an associate professor in the Department of Technical Communication at the University of Washington and a faculty affiliate with the UW Center for Engineering Learning and Teaching. Dr. Turns received her PhD in Industrial Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology, her MS in Systems Engineering from the University of Virginia, and her BS in Systems Engineering from the University of Virginia. Dr. Turns' research interests lie at the intersection of engineering education, cognitive/learning sciences, and user-centered design. Her engineering education work has focused on engineering design learning, knowledge integration, student preparedness for professional practice, and disciplinary understanding, and has involved the use of a wide variety of research methods including verbal protocol analysis, concept mapping, and ethnography. She has worked on several NSF-funded engineering education grants including an ongoing CAREER grant entitled "Using Portfolios to Promote Knowledge Integration in Engineering Education" and an NSF-funded center, "The Center for the Advancement of Engineering Education."