The RIDER Team
RIDER Center Director
Eren Erman Ozguven, Ph.D.
RESEARCH INTERESTS: Emergency transportation operations, Hurricane resilience, Network modeling, Transportation accessibility and safety, Connected vehicles, Intelligent transportation systems, Smart cities, and Urban mobility.
Eren Erman Ozguven, Associate Professor & Director - Eren Ozguven is an Associate Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering and Director of the RIDER Center. Dr. Ozguven is focused on investigating the relationships among different infrastructure networks in Florida, utilizing his academic research in transportation engineering, and background in industrial engineering and optimization. His work examines the simultaneous and interdependent movements of populations—including the aging and other vulnerable groups, and the commodities and services that meet their needs. During this process, he has established long-lasting multi-disciplinary collaborations with researchers from psychology, sociology, public policy, communications, urban planning, geography, civil, electrical and industrial engineering. The research program he created draws from various engineering and science methods including optimization, statistical analysis, human factors, machine learning, traffic and transportation engineering and geography.
Sungmoon Jung, Ph.D.
RESEARCH INTERESTS: Wind Effects on Structures, Hurricane & Community Resilience, Wind Energy, Vehicle Design & Safety
Sungmoon Jung, Professor & Executive Director - Sungmoon Jung is a professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. Dr. Jung received a Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and then worked for Caterpillar for three years. He then joined the engineering college in 2008. His main research interest is structural engineering and mechanics focusing on wind loading and impact loading. Dr. Jung and his students have published numerous papers in 1) analysis of the wind effects on structures considering characteristics of hurricane winds, 2) more accurate estimation of damage on buildings and communities subjected to strong winds, and 3) methods to mitigate structural damage against wind loading or impact loading. Agencies that funded his research include the National Science Foundation and the Florida Department of Transportation.
Tarek Abichou, Ph.D., P.E.
RESEARCH INTERESTS: Geoenvironmental Engineering, Geotechnical Engineering- Sustainable Solid Waste Management, Measuring, Modeling, and Mitigating Fugitive Emissions from Landfills, Beneficial Use Of Industrial By-Products in CE Applications, Barrier Systems, Geosynthetics, Design and Innovation
Tarek Abichou, Professor & Executive Director - Tarek Abichou is a Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. His research, academic, and professional background have focused on the environmental geotechnics field, which combines the traditional geotechnical engineering discipline with environmental and natural resources applications. Professor Abichou has been involved in field, laboratory, and modeling studies of sustainable solid waste management systems. Dr. Abichou has also investigated the beneficial use of by-products such as foundry waste, tire ships, glass, and fly ash in civil engineering applications. He has been recently involved in research on the resilience of coastal communities and barrier islands to rising sea levels and how to incorporate the use of livable shorelines to enhance coastal resiliency. His research findings have been validated at full-scale operating facilities in collaboration with industry and government agencies. He is known for his research investigating the mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions from landfills using bio-oxidation of methane. He was also a full-time practicing civil and environmental engineer for more than five years.
Lisa Spainhour, Ph.D., P.E.
RESEARCH INTERESTS: Transportation Safety Data, Crash Analysis, Civil Applications of Composite Materials
Lisa Spainhour, Professor & Executive Director - Lisa Spainhour is a Professor and Chair of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. She has taught at the college for 27 years, serving as Principal Investigator on over $12 million in federal and state-funded research projects. Her primary research area involves the development of traffic records software. The crash reporting and query software developed and supported by her team is provided free of charge to law enforcement agencies in Florida; it is currently used by over 18,000 users in over 150 agencies. Dr. Spainhour has received numerous awards, including the FSU Excellence in Online Course Design Award, the Florida Engineering Society Big Bend Chapter’s Engineer of the Year in Education Award, and the Transportation Research Board Pedestrian Committee’s Outstanding Paper Award. Dr. Spainhour serves as the Outreach and Education chair for FSU’s Transportation Center for Accessibility and Safety for an Aging Population, and has coordinated numerous K-12 mentoring activities for the Center. She received her doctorate from North Carolina State University, and is a licensed Professional Engineer in the state of Florida.
YASSIR ABDELRAZIG, Professor - Yassir Abdelrazig is a professor at the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Florida A&M University – Florida State University College of Engineering. He joined the college after earning a doctorate degree from Purdue University in 1999. His areas of research include construction engineering and management, resilient and sustainable infrastructure, and computer applications construction. He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in construction engineering and transportation engineering. He has published more than 60 publications and has completed sponsored research projects of more than $1.5 million. He is a faculty senator at the University Faculty Senate. He is a member of the Construction Research Council (CRC), the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), and several national committees such as Transportation Research Board Committees. He is a reviewer for the National Science Foundation (NSF), Department of Defense (DOD) and several scientific journals and book publishers.
GANG CHEN, Professor - Gang Chen is a Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. His principal research interest is in the area of watershed management, land use change and climate change, water flow and physicochemical reactions in the porous media, nutrient cycling, and landfill leachate management. His research is focused on watershed modeling, hydrologic and water flow modeling, fate and transport of non-point source agricultural pollutants, system design and integrated approaches of workable and cost-effective solutions.
WENRUI HUANG, Professor - Dr. Wenrui Huang is a Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. Dr. Huang has a doctorate in the area of Ocean Engineering from the University of Rhode Island. His research interests include coastal hazard modeling (storm surge, wave, and storm runoff and flood), impacts of natural hazards and sea-level rise on coastal ecosystems, coastal and estuarine environmental modeling. Dr. Huang serves as the Associate Editor for Journal of Coastal Research; Estuarine, Coastal, and Shelf Science, and the Executive Editor-in-Chief for Frontiers of Structure and Civil Engineering. He is also the co-PI of the Coastal Resilience Center, a Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence, and has many projects from agencies such as Environmental Protection Agency and National Science Foundation.
KATHERINE MILLA, Professor - Katherine Milla is a professor of geology and geospatial sciences in the Center for Water Resources at Florida A&M University’s College of Agriculture and Food Sciences, where she has been a faculty member since 1999. She is a fellow of the FAMU Digital Learning Initiative and serves as a faculty liaison for the FAMU Writing Across the Curriculum initiative. Dr. Milla completed her Ph.D. in geology at Florida State University, and a graduate certificate in Geospatial Intelligence from Penn State University. Her research interests include dynamics of interchanges between natural and human hydrologic systems. Her research has been funded by a variety of agencies, including the US Department of Agriculture, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and the Environmental Protection Agency. She is also devoted to research on the challenges of science teaching and learning in the digital age, and she actively collaborates with faculty in this area across the FAMU campus. Dr. Milla enjoys working actively with students. She teaches courses in geographic information systems, geospatial technologies, and supports undergraduate students in developing geospatial research projects. Outside of academia Dr. Milla enjoys kayaking, fishing and being in nature.
REN MOSES, Professor - Ren Moses is a Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering where he has been engaged in teaching, research, and consulting work for the past 13 years. Prior to joining the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering, Dr. Moses worked as a consulting traffic engineer with HNTB Corporation in South Florida and as a transportation engineering specialist with the Arizona Department of Transportation. Dr. Moses’s area of specialization is transportation with a focus on highway geometric design, traffic engineering and operations, highway safety analysis, intelligent transportation systems, and advanced traffic flow theory. Dr. Moses has attracted over $10 million in competitive research grants to research various issues related to highway safety and operations. These research grants were sponsored by the Florida Department of Transportation, the Federal Highway Administration, the City of Tallahassee, and the National Science Foundation.
JOHN O. SOBANJO, Professor - John O. Sobanjo, Ph.D., P.E., is a Professor of Civil Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering in Tallahassee, Florida. Dr. Sobanjo has a diverse background in civil engineering, with specific interests in the areas of transportation infrastructure systems, construction, materials, safety, resilience, sustainability, and applications of advanced technologies in civil engineering. He has been a principal investigator on about $6 million federal and state-funded research projects and has produced several journal publications and technical reports. Dr. Sobanjo is a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). He is an Associate Editor for the ASCE Journal of Bridge Engineering, and also on the Editorial Board of the ASCE-ASME Journal of Risk and Uncertainty in Engineering Systems. He has reviewed several research proposals for various national agencies, as well as reviewed journal papers for many publishers. Dr. Sobanjo is a licensed professional engineer in the states of California and Florida, with considerable industrial experience in various aspects of transportation design, traffic analysis, structural analysis, bridge inspection, construction, and maintenance, including over six years with both the Texas Department of Transportation (Texas DOT) and California State Department of Transportation (CalTrans). Dr. Sobanjo currently serves as the Director of the FSU’s Center for Accessibility and Safety for an Aging Population
CARL MOORE, Associate Professor - Carl Moore is an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering. His research interests include robot-based 3D printing, haptic interface design and control and teleoperation. He was instrumental in the development of cobot technology - a novel human-robot technology. Through NSF HBCU-UP and RISE programs, he has recruited and trained URM undergraduate and graduate students and facilitated REU programs. He currently serves as the Title III director for the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. Dr. Moore has professional experience as a manufacturing engineer for Eastman Kodak Company in the Copy Products and Single-Use Camera divisions. He also has professional research experience with Ford Motor Company's Interactive Conceptual Design and Applications lab where he studied how haptics can improve industrial design and manufacturing. Dr. Moore was instrumental in the development of cobots - a novel human-robot collaborative technology. He continues to perform robot design and control research and has secured research funding from NSF, ONR, DOD, ARL and others totaling $8.3 million ($3.2 million as PI). Through these projects Dr. Moore has been able to support and graduate 14 graduate students (including 6 BIPOC students) and publish 36 papers in robotics.
MAXIM DULEBENETS, Assistant Professor - Maxim A. Dulebenets is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. Dr. Dulebenets holds B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees in Railway Construction from the Moscow State University of Railroad Engineering (Moscow, Russia), and M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Memphis (Memphis, TN – USA) in Civil Engineering with a concentration in Transportation. His research interests include, but are not limited to: operations research, optimization, simulation modeling, NP-hard problems, mathematical programming, metaheuristics, hybrid algorithms, evolutionary computation, transportation engineering, freight transportation, intermodal freight facilities, railroads, liner shipping scheduling, and GPS data processing. Dr. Dulebenets has been involved in a variety of research projects with the overall value ~$5.4 million (~$1.2 million as a PI), sponsored by agencies such as the United States Department of Transportation, National Science Foundation, Florida Department of Transportation, Tennessee Department of Transportation, and Federal Express. He serves as a referee for ~70 international journals. Dr. Dulebenets is actively involved in activities of more than 10 Standing Committees and Subcommittees of the Transportation Research Board. He is an Affiliate Member of IEEE and INFORMS Optimization Society.
JUYEONG CHOI, Assistant Professor - Juyeong Choi is an Assistant Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. Dr. Choi and his research group have been pursuing an interdisciplinary approach to the sustainable management of disaster materials, infrastructure system of systems, project management, and infrastructure planning in the context of sustainability and disaster risk reduction. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Architectural Engineering from the University of Seoul, South Korea, and a Master’s and a doctoral degree in Civil Engineering (Construction) from Purdue University. Dr. Choi’s research efforts have been funded by various agencies, including the Natural Hazards Center, National Science Foundation (NSF), and the Florida Department of Transportation. Recently, Dr. Choi was sponsored by NSF to co-establish an extreme events reconnaissance organization (called SUstainable Material Management Extreme Events Reconnaissance or SUMMEER) to respond to disasters with respect to the sustainable management of disaster materials (i.e., reuse & recycling of disaster debris).
MICHAEL MARTÍNEZ-COLÓN, Assistant Professor- Michael Martínez-Colón is an Assistant Professor in the School of the Environment at FAMU. As a trained Geologist with a PhD in Oceanography, his areas of research interest are in sediment geochemistry, heavy metal fractionation, historical environmental evolution of coastal systems, and the use and application of marine bioindicators of pollution. More recently, he has conducted research on the fate and transport of trace metals in sediment-flora-detritivore trophic transfer mechanism in estuaries. Overall, his students are engaged in multiple aspects of sediment geochemistry, ocean acidification, coastal ecology, microplastics, and experimental culture work.
MILA S. TURNER, Assistant Professor – Mila S. Turner is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice at Florida A&M University. She is a broadly trained sociologist with research interests in diverse areas, including how social inequalities intersect with extreme events, population trends, and environmental hazards. She earned her doctorate in sociology from Howard University with a concentration in social inequality. During this time, Mila worked as a research assistant under the National Center for the Study of Preparedness and Catastrophic Event Response (a Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Center of Excellence) which allowed her to study first responders in the Gulf region after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. She later broadened her study of disaster response to investigate overall community resilience with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Center for Atmospheric Sciences (NOAA-NCAS) after a series of tornadoes devastated central Alabama in 2011. Mila’s primary research specialization in environmental justice allows for studying multiple scales of environments, disasters, and the varying impacts of environmental transitions like climate change on vulnerable populations. She centers her analyses within broader conversations about social inequality and public policy. Dr. Turner is also a member of regional and national professional associations, including the Social Science Extreme Events Research network (SSEER).
QIAN ZHANG, Assistant Professor - Qian Zhang is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. She received her BS degree in Civil Engineering from Tsinghua University, China in 2009. She later earned both her MS and Ph.D. degrees in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor in 2010 and 2015, respectively. Dr. Zhang’s research interest is primarily in the design and integration of advanced cementitious materials and innovative structural systems for sustainable and resilient infrastructures. The mission of her research lab is s to integrate advanced construction materials and technologies to improve the structural performance, durability, resilience and energy efficiency of buildings and infrastructures.
NASRIN ALAMDARI, Assistant Professor - Nasrin Alamdari is currently an Assistant Professor in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. She received her doctorate in Biological Systems Engineering from Virginia Tech, an MS in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Sharif University of Technology, and a BS in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Tabriz University. She focuses primarily on the areas of urban hydrology, green infrastructure, stormwater management, sustainable and resilient urban water systems, surface-groundwater interaction, and impact of nonstationary stressors—climate and sea-level rise on hydrology and biogeochemistry. The principal goal of her research is to develop novel tools and frameworks that advance understanding of ecosystems shaped by human decisions and anthropogenic consequences, thereby identifying new opportunities to improve water quality and reduce the risk of hydrologic extremes such as floods and droughts.
YOUNENG TANG, Assistant Professor - Youneng Tang is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. His research mainly aims at sustainable treatment of water, wastewater, and landfill leachate through biofilm processes. His recent research interests include a) chemical-additive-free recovery of metals and metalloids, b) beneficial use of water treatment by-products such as methane and ethane, c) synergistic combination of biofilm and other processes, and d) multispecies biofilm modeling. His recent research is supported by National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, Department of Defense, Florida Department of Environmental Protection, and private sectors.
EBRAHIM AHMADISHARAF, Research Professor - Ebrahim Ahmadisharaf is currently a Senior Research Associate in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. His work primarily focuses on advanced simulation of coupled human-water systems to support decisions on infrastructure design, flood mitigation, water pollution control and emergency management. Prior to joining FAMU-FSU College of Engineering, he was a Hydrologic Scientist at DHI and a Postdoctoral Associate in the Department of Biological Systems Engineering at Virginia Tech. His research has focused on surface hydrology, floods, urban stormwater, watershed management, dam break and uncertainty/risk analysis. Dr. Ahmadisharaf has previously worked in the industry as an engineer on issues related to flood mitigation, hydrometeorology and urban stormwater. He has a Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Tennessee Technological University and both MSc and BSc in Civil Engineering from Sharif University of Technology. His research has been published in several peer-reviewed journal articles. Dr. Ahmadisharaf has delivered multiple presentations at state, national and international conferences. Since 2016, he has been also an elected member of the ASCE-EWRI TMDL Analysis and Modeling Task Committee and Watershed Management Technical Committees.
KASSIE ERNST, Engineering Faculty - Kassie Ernst's primary efforts focus on creating future-ready and equitable urban, energy, and water systems specifically in the U.S. southeastern region in consideration of climate, environmental, and societal changes. She works between researchers and decision-makers by helping to create information that is useful within decision-making processes and working within decision-making processes on incorporating and using science to inform decision-making. Kassie focuses on systems-level adaptation and resilience planning to prepare systems, sectors, urban, and rural areas for stressors, specifically how to build-back and create flexibility within systems to withstand current and anticipated stressors. Kassie also directs the FAMU-FSU COE Grand Challenges Scholars Program that supports students in their efforts to tackle the big challenges that we collectively face this century.
WILL HILL, Graduate Student & Strategic Initiatives Manager - Will is an MS student in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. He earned a prior MS in Health Administration, a BS in Biological Sciences, and a BS in International Affairs. His current research interests involve the sustainable improvement of regional resiliency, disaster waste management, and disaster response. Currently, he studies under Dr. Juyeong Choi helping to further establish the NSF-funded organization SUMMEER which focuses on sustainable debris management and data collection. Will has a diverse background and many eclectic interests that influence his work. He is passionate about photography, writing, travel, language, and creative collaborations.