2019 Conference Sessions

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Tuesday, October 1 | 2:30-3:30pm

New Technology That’s Revolutionizing Trucking

Whether it's autonomous and electric vehicles, over-the-road trucking surely is not what it used to be. Expert panelists will explore how such emerging technologies are dramatically changing transportation and supply chain operations. Learn technical insights into self-driving autonomous trucks and what women in trucking need to know about its impact on the industry from Paul Schlegel, Senior Vice President of Starsky Robotics. Hear from Monica Hsu, Vehicles Controls Engineer with TuSimple and Missy Blair, Program Manager with Pima Community College how their organizations collaborate to train truck drivers for careers in autonomous driving. Lastly, you'll learn detailed, unbiased insights on the potential and challenges for electric-based trucks from Rick Mihelic, Director Future Technologies Studies with the North American Council for Freight Efficiency.

Panelists include: Rick Mihelic, Director Future Technologies Studies, North American Council for Freight Efficiency (NACFE); Paul Schlegel, Senior Vice President, Starsky Robotics; Monica Hsu, Vehicles Controls Engineer, TuSimple; and Missy Blair, Program Manager, Center for Transportation Training, Pima Community College. Facilitated by Susan Fall, Owner, LaunchIt Public Relations. 

About the Panelists

Rick Mihelic, Director Future Technologies Studies, North American Council for Freight Efficiency NACFE, has 37 years’ experience including 20 years in commercial vehicle development for Peterbilt developing aerodynamic vehicles and groundbreaking systems including the Peterbilt/Cummins DOE SuperTruck and compliance with the EPA Green House Gas Standards. Active in SAE Commercial Vehicles and ATA TMC Future Truck task forces and committees. Awarded the prestigious SAE L. Ray Buckendale Award in 2016 including publishing Fuel and Freight Efficiency – Past, Present and Future Perspectives. Rick had 12 years in advanced technology R&D programs for Lockheed with DOD, NASA and DOE. Rick is Board member of the ISEEK Corporation.

Monica Hsu serves as a vehicle system control engineer at TuSimple, working towards the would’s first commercial-ready Level 4 fully autonomous heavy-duty vehicle for depot-to-depot operation and do so every day for customers such as UPS, Royal Paper, Arizona Association of Food Banks and more. Prior to joining TuSimple, she worked as a Control System Research Assistant at Arizona State University, managing EcoCAR Mobility Challenge controls team, where she developed the Hybrid Supervisory Controller for the 2016 upfitted P2 parallel hybrid Camaro. At TuSimple she is developing a vehicle control system that integrates TuSimple Autonomous Driving System, Peterbilt Engine Control Unit, Transmission Control Unit, Brake Control Module, and Cab Control Module with focus on functional safety to align with company’s safety mission.

Missy Blair is the program manager for Pima Community College’s Center for Transportation Training. Her transportation-related accomplishments include earning a Class A Commercial Driver License, certified as a RiderCoach for the Motorcycle Safety Foundation, and she is a National Safety Council’s Attitudinal Dynamics of Driving instructor. Most recently, she has led the collaboration between Pima Community College and TuSimple teams to create a new certificate program to upskill drivers for the workforce of the future and autonomous vehicle technology. Missy is currently pursuing a Master of Education in Educational Leadership (Community College/Higher Education emphasis) through Northern Arizona University. Missy is honored to be one of Women in Trucking’s 2019 Top Women to Watch in Transportation.  

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