Skip to Navigation
University of Pittsburgh
Print This Page Print this pages

December 8, 2016

People of the Times

Swanson School of Engineering faculty members Kyle Bibby and Leanne Gilbertson, of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, were among 17 engineering and science faculty from around the world recognized with Environmental Science & Technology’s 2016 ES&T Excellence in Review Awards.

Environmental Science & Technology is a biweekly peer-reviewed scientific journal of the American Chemical Society. It covers research in environmental science and environmental technology, including environmental policy. The awards were established in 2003 to honor individuals who consistently provide the journal with scholarly and timely reviews.

Editor-in-chief David L. Sedlak stated: “Each year we present reviewer awards to recognize the efforts of exceptional reviewers who somehow found time in their busy schedules to review multiple papers and share deep insights with us.

“These are the people who went the extra distance to provide reviews that bring authors back to ES&T. They are the ones who turned a good manuscript into an excellent paper. They are truly the peers behind our peer review.”

Kyle Bibby

Kyle Bibby

• Bibby’s interests include understanding the presence, ecology and diversity of microorganisms, such as viruses and bacteria, in an environmental engineering context. As the most abundant and genetically diverse biological entities on earth, microorganisms are at the core of many of society’s environmental challenges, including waste treatment and environmentally transmitted disease. In the Bibby Lab (, emerging molecular biology techniques such as proteomics, genomics, metagenomics and transcriptomics are integrated with fundamental, quantitative environmental engineering practice to develop new insights and solutions to these problems.

Leanne Gibertson

Leanne Gibertson

• Gilbertson’s research group ( aims to inform sustainable design of emerging materials and products, ensuring their inherent safety while simultaneously realizing an improved or novel functional performance. Her group has focused on nanomaterials and nano-enabled products spanning molecular level design to systems-level analysis.
At the molecular level, Gilbertson’s research probes interactions at the material-bio interface using carefully controlled and characterized material and biological systems to isolate governing mechanisms of the interaction as a path towards material manipulation for an intended outcome.

Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences faculty members Hrvoje Petek of physics and David H. Waldeck of chemistry were among 391 American Association for the Advancement of Science members elected 2016 AAAS Fellows in recognition of contributions to innovation, education and scientific leadership.

They will be recognized at AAAS’s 2017 annual meeting.

The association’s tradition of electing AAAS Fellows began in 1874 to recognize members for their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications.

Margaret Quinn Rosenzweig, a faculty member in the School of Nursing Department of Acute and Tertiary Care, received an honorable mention in Pittsburgh magazine’s inaugural Excellence in Nursing awards.

Honorees were selected in recognition of extraordinary work in the field.

Jacqueline Dunbar-Jacob, dean and Distinguished Service Professor of Nursing, served on the panel of judges.

The American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) selected industrial engineering faculty member Joel Haight of the Swanson School of Engineering as its 2016 Safety Professional of the Year (SPY) for the Engineering Practice Specialty.

The SPY awards recognize ASSE members who have helped advance the occupational safety, health and environmental profession through exemplary volunteer service to the society and to their respective practice specialty during the ASSE calendar year. There are 16 categories of practice specialties for the SPY awards, including engineering, and the ASSE chooses winners from its 37,000 members nationwide.

Haight has been a member of ASSE since 1985. He chairs the research committee for the ASSE Foundation and is a member of its board of trustees.

He joined Pitt’s industrial engineering faculty in 2013.

He previously was chief of the human factors branch at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health Pittsburgh Office of Mine Safety and Health Research, where he managed 35-40 researchers in the areas of ergonomics, cognitive engineering, human behavior and training.

Haight also served for nearly 10 years as a faculty member in energy and mineral engineering at Penn State and previously worked at Chevron Corp.

His research interests include health and safety management systems intervention effectiveness measurement and optimization and human performance measurement in automated control system design.

Chief Dan Songer chats with UPB student Sidney Peralta.

Chief Dan Songer chats with UPB student Sidney Peralta.

Pitt-Bradford police Chief Dan Songer, the longest-serving police chief in Pitt’s system, is retiring in January after 42 years in law enforcement.

He was actively involved in two police unions. He served as secretary/treasurer of the William Hanley Lodge #67 Fraternal Order of Police, assisting in contract negotiations, and is currently the conductor for the FOP’s Bucktail Lodge #96.

After being named police chief and director of campus safety at Bradford cin 1996, he became a member of the Northeast Colleges and Universities Security Association and served as a board member 2000-09. The organization recognized him in 2009 by awarding him the Robert Joy Award for distinguished service and made him a life member.

Songer also served as president and vice president of the Colleges and Universities Police and Security Association of Western Pennsylvania and for many years was the president of both the Seneca Law Enforcement Agency of McKean County and the Community Relations Board of the Federal Correctional Institution, McKean. Songer’swon UPB’s Staff Association Award in 2012.

Those 42 years haven’t been all business for Songer, though. For several years, he has played drums and sung in Pitt-Bradford’s rock and roll band, Staff Infection.

—Compiled by K.

Leave a Reply