Christopher J. Ahmadjian, associate director of the UMass Transportation Center (UMTC) in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department, has been awarded the prestigious Donald C. Stone Award for Excellence in Education from the American Public Works Administration (APWA). As associate director, Ahmadjian manages a variety of UMTC programs, including Baystate Roads, which is the Massachusetts Local Technical Assistance Program (LTAP). Baystate Roads has been operating under his leadership for the past 26 years.
The award was established in honor of Stone, who founded the APWA in 1937. According to the APWA, the purpose of the award is “to recognize outstanding and meritorious achievement of individuals or chapters for their work in delivering educational opportunities for all levels of persons engaged in the delivery of public works services as well as assisting in the areas of continuing and graduate professional education for public works professionals.”
“Dr. Chris Ahmadjian has worked in transportation for over 35 years, in a variety of capacities in both the public and private sectors,” says Ahmadjian’s nomination letter from Gordon R. Daring, president of the New England Chapter of APWA.
Daring writes that “Chris has also been a tireless advocate for professional development across the region and country, bringing together stakeholders to tackle issues facing the public works industry and developing peer‐learning networks where professionals can share their experiences and learn from each other.”
Daring relates that, in 2015, the UMTC adopted a “One Center” approach, a Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) program that incorporates LTAP training, MassDOT-specific training, MassDOT transportation research projects, and two annual transportation‐focused conferences – all under one umbrella contract.
Daring adds that “Chris’ work with other regional LTAP groups provides him the opportunity to educate local agencies on the information they need to address new regulations, incorporate the latest technology into their operations, and provide excellent service to their communities.”
According to Daring, “Chris has been at the forefront of this program that brings valuable training to public works and transportation professional for state and local agencies as well as private industry.”
As the Stone Award recipient, Ahmadjian has been invited to receive this award recognizing his achievement at APWA’s annual Awards Recognition Ceremony, scheduled to be held on Monday, September 9, at 5:00 p.m. at the Washington State Convention Center. (June 2019)