Vol 39 No 1.1

In this Newsletter 

  • Welcome Note
  • Featured Article - Welcome our Lead Research Engineer: Jen Sharkey 
  • Christopher B. Burke Elected to the National Academy of Engineering
  • Purdue Road School 
  • Road Scholars Updates 
  • Directory Updates  

Welcome Note

Spring has arrived, bringing along fresh starts. For Indiana LTAP that means a new team member! We recently welcomed Jen Sharkey as our Lead Research Engineer. In this role, Jen will reimagine the research program to deliver local road research projects that are impactful to our agencies. Utilizing the resources Purdue University has to offer, Jen will assist in turning research into training, and into implementation.

Speaking of fresh starts, Jen will align this new research program with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), Center for Local Aid Support (CLAS), Build a Better Mouse Trap (BBMT) program, to allow those local agency innovators recognized at the statewide level to be submitted to the annual BBMT competition. Jen will also work in line with the FHWA’s Every Day Counts initiative.

This is only a short list of what Jen will bring to this new program. We are excited to see what she does with this opportunity. Learn more about Jen, her history, and future with Indiana LTAP in our featured article (below).


Featured Article - Welcome our Lead Research Engineer: Jen Sharkey 

 Photo of Jen Sharkey with text that reads: Jen Sharkey is joining the Indiana LTAP staff at Purdue. As the Lead Research Engineer, her supervision will ensure a positive impact on local transportation agencies through education, support, and facilitation of innovative idea exchange.

Meet Jen Sharkey: the newest addition to the Purdue University Local Technical Assistance Program (LTAP). Although she’s a new hire, she’s no stranger when it comes to the transportation industry: Jen has held prestigious positions such as a design engineer with A&Z Engineering, LLC, as well as highway department administrator as the Steuben County Engineer...

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Christopher B. Burke Elected to the National Academy of Engineering

Christopher B. Burke was elected to the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) in 2021, a premier organization that provides engineering leadership to the nation. This highly selective honor is considered the highest professional honor an engineer can receive. Burke is the CEO of Christopher Burke Engineering, Ltd., located in Rosemont, Illinois and with four offices in Indiana.

Burke received his doctorate from Purdue University and continues to contribute to his alma mater, serving on the President’s council and the Civil Engineer Advisory Council.

To learn more about Dr. Christopher Burke’s newest achievement, click here.


Purdue Road School 

The 107th Purdue Road School made history when the conference moved online. Spanning over two weeks (March 9-11 & 16-18), the conference hosted live sessions with facilitated Q&A sessions. The temporary format still brought large crowds with 18,251 participant hours recorded and an average of 961 attendees per session. Thank you for making this alternative format a success! 

If you missed a session or want to re-watch a favorite session, visit the conference's ePub page. Make sure to check out the two presentations given by LTAP Lead Engineer of Asset Management, Pat Conner ("Five Years of Asset Management: Emerging Tools" & "Highway Funding for Local Elected Officials"). 


Road Scholar Updates 

The Indiana LTAP Road Scholar Program has always strived to be flexible and reactive in order to serve the industry to the best of its ability. In the past adjustments have been made to Core Courses and the program to reflect the needs of the locals. In an effort to reach as many locals the Indiana Road Scholar Program is moving on to Indiana LTAP’s new Learning Management System. So every local has an opportunity to achieve their Road Builder status despite distance, budget, or work load.

In addition to registering for classes and verifying credits online, Locals will now have access to programs, courses, and webinars from their computers. Courses will host videos, supporting documentation, quizzes, decisions trees, and exams.

LTAP has been hard at work in the film studio with trusted presenters to start to move the program’s 12 Core Courses online. We hope to start releases the courses this spring and have them all available by the end 2022. Please keep an eye on our social media, website and newsletters as we work to keep you updated on our progress.

2020 Road Builder/ Master Road Builders,

LTAP apologizes for the delay in the recognition of your hard work. Please know we will be reaching out to you by the end of April about your awards and working out how best to get them to you.

LTAP Directory - New App Coming Soon! 

The print directory will be mailed out to local agencies this May. A new app, both for desktops and phones (iPhone or Android), will be available this Summer. 

Image of App with map background and list of contacts in a black box.

With this brand new and FREE app, you will be able to search for contacts and save favorite contacts for future use. The intearctive map will also show contacts near you, which will be especially useful when you are on the road. 


Upcoming LTAP Events