October 19, 2020
Kelly Schaefer, a Mizzou civil and environmental engineering (CEE) alumna, was awarded the 2020 Missouri Valley Section of the Institute of Transportation Engineers (MOVITE) Young Transportation Professional of the Year. MOVITE announced this honor at its virtual fall meeting.
“I am thrilled and honored to be recognized by my peers for the work I love doing,” Schaefer said. “My grandfather was an electrical engineer and loved talking to me about my then-new job.
“He would ask me about using logic to run traffic signals. It’s wonderful that this award was for logic-based work on a signal corridor. This one is for him.”
Schaefer won the award for the Kirkwood (MO) Road Improvement Project. This project rebuilt 11 new traffic signals and installed fiber optic communications along Kirkwood Road. Schaefer works at the Lochmueller Group in St. Louis and is their signal operations technical expert. She is a certified professional engineer (PE) and a certified professional traffic operations engineer® (PTOE).
“The Kirkwood Road job was challenging. It required us to think outside of the box and learn new, advanced timing strategies,” Schaefer said. “We’ve continued using and building upon these skills on other projects.”
At Lochmueller, Schaefer leads all signal optimization efforts. This includes large corridor projects to incorporating new or modified signals into an existing system. She also works on traffic calming and signal design projects.
A May 2009 graduate, Schaefer’s emphasis area within CEE was Transportation. As a student, she was captain of the Steel Bridge Team, secretary of the American Society of Civil Engineers, and president and marshal of Chi Epsilon. Schaefer cited the Transportation emphasis area as being relevant for her career and fundamental to traffic engineering today.
“The program’s classes aren’t provided at many universities. This makes Mizzou one of the top schools we (Lochmueller Group) recruit at for new traffic engineers,” Schaefer said.