January/February 2013
In this issue...
Partner Spotlight: Kimley-Horn
2013 Recognition Award Winners
Job Postings on WTS MN Website
ITSO Update
Members on the Move
New Members 

WTS Minnesota welcomes the following new and returning members:


Andrea Azary

WSB & Associates


Rachel Harris

CDM Smith


Arlene McCarthy

Metropolitan Council


Krysten Saatela


Save the Date
WTS Scholarships and Recognitions Luncheon 
April 10, 2013 


More information to follow. Contact Lyssa Leitner with questions.

Corporate Partners   

Thank you to our corporate partner:


Kimley-Horn Logo  


See your logo here, and support the advancement of women in transportation! For more information about becoming a corporate partner, visit our website

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Has your email address changed?

Please email Rose Ryan with your new address and don't forget to update your email address with WTS International as well.
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2013 WTS Minnesota
Board of Directors

Fay Simer

Vice President
Molly Stewart

Sara Pflaum

Morgan Abbott 
Past President
Scholarships & Recognitions Director
 Lyssa Leitner

 Programs Director
 Ashley Ver Berg

 Membership Director
Rose Ryan

 Marketing Director
 Bre Grand

 Transportation YOU Director
HunWen Westman
2013 WTS Minnesota
Advisory Board

Donna Allan
WTS Past President

Gina Baas
Center for Transportation Studies

Debra Brisk
Hennepin County

Biz Colburn
WTS Past President

Sandy Cullen

University of Minnesota

Margaret Donahoe

Minnesota Transportation Alliance

Mary Gute


Judy Hollander

Hennepin County

Ann Johnson

University of Minnesota

Connie Kozlak

Metropolitan Council

Jessica Laabs

Kimley-Horn & Associates

Stephanie Malinoff

Center for Transportation Studies

Laurie McGinnis

Center for Transportation Studies

Dan Meyers


Sam O'Connell

Dakota County

Kristin Asher

City of Richfield

Lisa Raduenz


Kate Sanderson


Dawn Spanhake

Center for Transportation Studies

Amy Vennewitz

Metropolitan Council

Charleen Zimmer

Zan Associates


President's Column

Fay Simer 



Greetings WTS Minnesota Members & Friends,


I am honored to serve as this year's chapter president. I come to this role at an exciting time in our chapter. 2012 closed with some big accomplishments: our chapter marked its 30th anniversary by celebrating with women and men from across the region and we formally launched our Transportation YOU mentorship program. The 2013 board and I hope to carry this positive momentum into our 2013 initiatives!


This year, the 2013 board will build on some of our 2012

successes while taking on new projects. We plan to continue membership outreach at MnDOT and other public sector agencies. The Transportation YOU program is now in full swing. Due to recent fundraising efforts and the help of our chapter sponsor, Kimley-Horn, I am thrilled to announce that our chapter will send a mentor/mentee pair to WTS International's


D.C. Youth Summit this June. In addition, we plan to build our outreach to corporate partners and conduct a strategic plan to define future fundraising and membership goals for our chapter.


The impact our organization made in 2012 would not have been nearly as great without the support of volunteers. WTS members and friends participated in student career events, led panel discussions, designed our Transportation YOU program, mentored students, organized our 30th Anniversary Gala and contributed donations to our fundraising efforts. Your participation makes a big impact on our organization, and in turn helps our organization have a bigger impact in this community. As we begin 2013, I encourage you to get involved!


I look forward to meeting more of you at programs and events.




Fay Simer

President, WTS Minnesota





Partner Spotlight: Kimley-Horn and Associates, Inc.


 Kimley-Horn Logo 
WTS Minnesota would like to give a special thank-you to Kimley-Horn and Associates, for becoming the chapter's inaugural corporate sponsor in 2012.
Incorporated since 1967, Kimley-Horn has grown to become a recognized design consulting firm in the transportation field (amongst other services), providing services for the public and private sectors via locations across the United States. 
As an advocacy level sponsor for WTS Minnesota, Kimley-Horn led the way in elevating our organization's ability to deliver thoughtful programs, facilitate industry connections, and cultivate the next generation of transportation professionals.   
Kimley-Horn's commitment to WTS Minnesota paved the way for three exciting new initiatives in 2012, resulting in additional programs, new mentorship opportunities, and new WTS connections:
  • Making Career Connections: WTS at MnDOT   
  • Transportation YOU mentorship program at Blaine High School
  • WTS Minnesota 30th Anniversary Gala
In 2013, WTS Minnesota will build on our 2012 successes, continuing to grow our local Transportation YOU program, provide leadership opportunities for our members, and grant scholarships to women transportation students.   
It is with sincere gratitude that WTS Minnesota thanks Kimley-Horn for their partnership, and for helping us to advance women in transportation.
To support WTS Minnesota through a corporate or program sponsorship, learn about the benefits or joining on our website or contact Molly Stewart for more information.   

2013 WTS Minnesota Recognition Award Winners

Lyssa Leitner


WTS MN is honored to congratulate the following award winners this year:

  • Employer of the Year: Zan Associates
  • Innovative Transportation Solutions Award: MnDOT Hastings Bridge (TH 61)
  • Member of the Year: Stephanie Malinoff, CTS
  • Rosa Parks Diversity Leadership Award: Central Corridor Transit Service Study/ Trusted Advocates Program
  • Woman of the Year: Hennepin County Commissioner Gail Dorfman
  • Scholarship Recipients: Chelsey Armstrong and Xuan Di


A luncheon will be held on April 10 to honor all award winners and the 2012 scholarship recipients. Details about the luncheon will be available soon.


Transportation YOU Update                       

HunWen Westman


WTS Minnesota kicked off its Transportation YOU mentorship program this past fall, partnering with the Center for Engineering, Mathematics, and Science at Blaine High School. Five students, juniors and seniors in the CEMS program, have been meeting monthly with mentors Katie Caskey, Marie Cote, Rhonda Pierce, Lisa Rasmussen, and Ashley Slominski to learn about a variety of topics in transportation. 


Since the initial meeting in October, the girls have learned about transportation planning, structural engineering, and traffic operations and safety. They have kept travel diaries, tried out new modes of transportation, conducted a walkability audit, built marshmallow-and-toothpick bridges, and played the University of Minnesota's Distraction Dodger game. After just the first activity, the program was already feeling like a success - the girls were already talking about careers in civil engineering and transportation!


Three more activities will round out the first year of the mentorship program, and planning will begin for next year. If you are interested in being a mentor or helping to plan next year's program, please contact HunWen Westman.

February Program: Are You Saying What They Are Hearing? How To Improve The Message

Ashley Ver Burg 


On Monday, February 4, WTS members and friends gathered for a professional development program sponsored by TKDA. Motivational Speaker and Organizational Leadership Coach Maribeth Overland (Mo) engaged over twenty attendees in examining their leadership styles.


Using the Enneagram personality model, Mo challenged participants think about who they are, how they are, and why they are. The engaging session provided clarity and insight into preferences in communication styles as well as shed light on improving one's versatility and adaptability in communicating difficult messages.


For more information on the Enneagram, visit Mo's website.




Volunteer Opportunities: Programs Committee

Ashley Ver Burg 


WTS Minnesota is continuously striving to engage our members through programming, networking and professional development. In order to do so, we're always looking for assistance from anyone interested in helping realize our programs. We're currently looking for members for our Programs Committee- and you don't need to be a member to get involved!


The 2013 Programs Committee will be at the forefront of delivering a rich and lively season of events to WTS MN's members and friends. The committee will set the 2013 schedule and oversee the effective implementation of chapter programs. Committee members will gain:

  • Visibility among transportation professionals
  • Professional connections with WTS MN members and friends
  • Exposure to relevant issues and topics within the field of transportation
  • Leadership experience in event planning for peer members of our industry
  • Opportunities to engage with the WTS MN board


Contact Ashley Ver Burg with interest.


Job Postings on WTS Minnesota Website  
WTS Minnesota now posts job and internship opportunities on our website. Visit our Employment Opportunities page to view current postings, and help us spread the word about available positions by sending new posting information to Bre Grand.
ITSO Update 
Yao Lu, ITSO Treasurer
ITSO held its February TransTalk at the University of Minnesota on February 1. Scott Petersen, a Professional Engineer that has worked in SRF's ITS group or the past eight years, presented information about two very different projects. The first one was about how SRF has been conducting a full system engineering process to help North Dakota DOT close the road south of the City of Devils Lake when winter storm conditions necessitate a closure. The second project presented was about evaluating loop detectors and non loop sensors to determine their accuracy in measuring vehicle length.
ITSO serves as interdisciplinary link for the University of Minnesota student body, helping to coordinate and engage students of different academic disciplines commonly studying issues related to transportation, and helping build relationships with practicing professionals and alumni.

For more information about ITSO and TransTalk events, visit their











Mackenzie Turner Bargen and Jonathan Turner Bargen welcomed healthy twin boys, Hugo Lynn (7lb 1 oz) and August "Gus" Paul (6lb 14 oz), on December 11.  The boys have two older brothers, Joseph (19) and William (2.5).  Congratulations to the Turner Bargen family!





Congratulations to Ashley Slominski, who recently took the position of Project Engineer in the Structural Group at WSB & Associates. Ashley's new email address is: aslominski@wsbeng.com




Katie Roth kicked off the new year with a move to Metro Transit's new BRT/Small Starts Project Office. This group is responsible for implementing arterial BRT, developing BRT on the Orange Line (I-35W South), and studying alternatives for the Midtown Corridor. The project office is located just north of the Hiawatha light rail operations facility.




Have member news to share? Send in snippets about job changes, life milestones, and other accomplishments to Bre Grand so we can keep track of and recognize our colleagues!



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