Dr. Melissa S Tooley, P.E. is the Director of External Initiatives at TTI, which includes managing large research programs and federal affairs. Her research interests include transportation policy and planning issues related to automated and connected vehicles, transportation network companies, and the internet of things. Dr. Tooley was recently awarded the Ethel Birchland Lifetime Achievement Award by the American Road and Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA), which recognizes women who have demonstrated outstanding leadership and long-term service in the transportation design and construction industry’s public or private sectors, and dedication to the advancement of innovation and other women leaders. She served ARTBA as Vice-Chairman at Large for 6 years, and was the inaugural Chair of the Women Leaders in Transportation Design and Construction Council. She is a member of the Board of Regents of the Eno Transportation Foundation and is a former Eno Transportation Fellowship Recipient. She has 17 years of experience as a University Transportation Center (UTC) Director, having served as Director of 3 different UTCs at the University of Arkansas and TTI.
Dr. Tooley is a former President of the Council of University Transportation Centers, a national organization of universities engaged in transportation research. In 2015, she chaired the National Academy of Sciences steering committee for the UTC Spotlight Conference on Automated and Connected Vehicles, and in 2014 chaired the supply chain track for the UTC Spotlight Conference on Economic Competitiveness. Dr. Tooley is a recipient of ARTBA’s S.S. Steinberg Award, a national award given for outstanding contributions to transportation education. She was a Master’s and Ph.D. level recipient of the Eisenhower Fellowship, sponsored by USDOT. She was honored as Arkansas’ Young Engineer of the Year in 1994, and is a former president of the NW Chapter of the Arkansas Society of Professional Engineers. She was an Assistant Professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Arkansas and the University of Florida, and prior to joining academia spent 10 years as a civil engineering consultant. Dr. Tooley holds a BS degree in civil engineering from Louisiana Tech University and a Master’s and PhD from the University of Arkansas in civil engineering with an emphasis in transportation.