Amy Schutzbach, Engineer of Physical Research at the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), retired on April 30, 2016.
Schutzbach graduated with a B.S. in civil engineering (1984) and M.S. in civil engineering (1985), both from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. After graduation, she was hired by IDOT in the Bureau of Materials and Physical Research. She served in a variety of positions, including Materials Investigation Engineer, Design Technology Engineer, and Engineer of Technical and Product Studies, before assuming the position of Engineer of Physical Research in the fall of 2007. As the Engineer of Physical Research, Amy oversaw the Bridge Investigation, Pavement Technology, Technical and Product Studies, and Research Coordination Units.
Schutzbach also oversaw IDOT’s contract research program and IDOT’s participation in TRB, NCHRP, and FHWA’s Transportation Pooled Fund Program. She was a member of several national committees, including the AASHTO Research Advisory Committee (RAC) and the AASHTO Standing Committee on Research, the latter of which advises the AASHTO Board of Directors on research needs and votes on the national transportation research agenda. Additionally, she recently completed a term as the chair of AASHTO RAC’s Region 3, consisting of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, and Wisconsin. Schutzbach remains a member of NCHRP Panel 20-68, U.S. Domestic Scan Program; and NCHRP Panel 20-44, Accelerating the Application of NCHRP Research Results.
Her dedication to research and support of TRP chairs and members have been instrumental in the success of the program. During Schutzbach’s tenure as the Engineer of Physical Research, IDOT/ICT research projects were selected as AASHTO High Value “Sweet Sixteen” projects in five of the past six years. Several other projects have been featured in AASHTO High Value Research supplemental brochures.
Schutzbach was selected by her peers as the 2016 TRP Chair of the Year in recognition of her work as the TRP chair on six ICT research projects, membership on roughly 20 TRPs (including the 2013, 2014, and 2016 High Impact Research projects), and her input and assistance on dozens more. She was also recognized as the IDOT Central Office Employee of the Quarter for October–December 2009.
Her skills and knowledge of materials, pavement design, and pavement selection have been invaluable to the department. She was instrumental in the development of IDOT’s mechanistic pavement design in the 1980s, as well as the updated design issued in 2011. Her passion for research and pavements has shone through her training and mentoring of numerous staff, and her encouragement of IDOT employees to become actively involved in research at the state and federal levels.
Article submitted by the Illinois Department of Transportation.