CTRE  en route

Summer 2008

CTRE en route is published twice a year to inform readers about CTRE's projects and programs.

Address: CTRE, 2901 S. Loop Drive, Suite 3100, Ames, IA 50010

Phone: 515-294-8103
FAX: 515-294-0467

Website: www.ctre.iastate.edu/

CTRE Communications:
Marcia Brink
CTRE en route editor:
Michele Regenold

CTRE is an Iowa State University center.

Iowa State University: Becoming the best

Changing faces at CTRE

Inya Nlenanya

Bob Sperry

Jim Grove

Jim Grove

Dennis Kroeger
Dennis Kroeger

Dave Plazak
Dave Plazak

Two new people have joined CTRE, one retired but stayed close, and two familiar faces have left.

New faces

Inya Nlenanya

Inya Nlenanya is the new geographic information systems (GIS) technician with the Iowa Pavement Management Program. He spends most of his time analyzing and processing road data and preparing the interactive maps road agencies have come to rely on.

His GIS skills also support other asset management projects.

Nlenanya has an undergraduate degree in electronic engineering from Nigeria and an MS (agricultural engineering) from Iowa State University.

Bob Sperry

Bob Sperry holds the new half-time Local Roads Safety Liaison position with the Local Technical Assistance Program. He meets with engineers around the state about Iowa DOT resources and grants that can help prevent rural highway deaths.

He is also working on a manual called “Best Practices for Low-Cost Safety Improvements on Local Roads in Iowa.”

Sperry has a BS (civil engineering) from Iowa State University and was a county engineer for 31 years in Taylor, Webster, and Story counties before joining CTRE in March 2008.

“It’s great to be able to go out and help a lot of people I know so well and accomplish things and save lives at the same time,” says Sperry.

New position

Jim Grove, portland cement concrete paving engineer with the CP Tech Center for 5 years, retired in March 2008. But he didn’t go far. He took a position as FHWA’s senior project engineer for the mobile concrete laboratory. His office is only a few doors down from his old CP Tech office.

Grove was the project leader for the Material and Construction Optimization for Prevention of Premature PCC Pavement Distress (MCO) pooled fund study, a 5-year project involving 17 states.

Faces we’ll miss

After 12 years each, two familiar faces left CTRE in summer 2008.

Dennis Kroeger

Dennis Kroeger, CTRE transportation research specialist, took a job as a safety specialist with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in the Ames division office after 12 years at CTRE.

At CTRE, he focused on intelligent transportation systems (ITS) for commercial vehicle operations (CVO). He oversaw field operational tests and research in ITS/CVO to expedite commercial vehicle traffic.

“CTRE has been a great place to be the past 12 years,” says Kroeger. 

Dave Plazak

David Plazak, CTRE’s associate director for policy, joined the Transportation Research Board in Washington, D.C. as a senior program officer with the Strategic Highway Research Program.

Plazak was the educational coordinator and the first director of the Midwest Transportation Consortium. Plazak worked on many access management projects and was a lecturer in the community and regional planning department at Iowa State University. In 2006, Plazak led an interdisciplinary transportation summer seminar in Rome.

“CTRE is easily the best place I have worked in almost 30 years of my professional life. I will miss my friends here, the faculty, the staff, the students, and the sponsors who I have been able to work with over the past 12 years. Thanks for making this such a great experience,” says Plazak.