As part of the 2020 Transportation Systems Management and Operations or TSMO Awards competition, the National Operations Center of Excellence named two industry leaders as its “TSMO Champions” for the year – Tony Kratofil, COO and chief engineer for the Michigan Department of Transportation and Faisal Saleem, Intelligent Transportation Systems branch manager for the Maricopa County Department of Transportation.
NOCoE – a partnership between AASHTO, the Institute of Transportation Engineers, and the Intelligent Transportation Society of America, with support from the Federal Highway Administration – described both Kratofil and Saleem as “tireless advocates” for the TSMO community at both the state and federal level and credited them with helping others in transportation pursue TSMO careers.
The NOCoE said Kratofil – who previously served as chair of its technical advisory committee – has provided leadership in overseeing the technical program of an organization built to empower the TSMO community; crafting technical services and programs for NOCoE that educated and trained thousands of TSMO professionals across the country.
In presiding over a workforce summit and several NOCoE student programs, Kratofil also “laid foundational activities” to continue growing the TSMO workforce “for years to come.”
Saleem is credited by NOCoE for “not only leading positive change” regarding the importance of TSM within his organization but also “accepting the challenge of driving change nationally.”
NOCoE describes Saleem as being “instrumental” in many FHWA-sponsored TSMO training sessions, such as the Arizona Capability Maturity Model Workshop and the Arizona TSMO Executive Briefing, state leaders and decision makers while “facilitating collaborative discussions” to help other transportation agencies identify where they are today with their TSMO strategies, where they want to be, and how to get there.