WYDOT Employee Receives National Award
CHEYENNE, WY. – Wyoming Department of Transportation employee Ali Ragan’s commitment to helping implement new technologies that improve highway safety in Wyoming recently received national recognition.
The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials recently awarded Ragan, project manager for WYDOT’s Intelligent Transportation Systems program, the Vanguard Award for her work. Ragan was one of two people to receive the award on the national level this year.
The Vanguard award is given yearly to an individual from an AASHTO member department age 40 and younger who “exemplifies a commitment to excellence and/or implementation of innovative technologies and processes.”
Ragan received the award for her work on WYDOT’s travel information website, the 511 mobile road condition app, the Connected Vehicle Pilot program that will provide information to travelers along the Interstate 80 corridor, a road condition reporting app for WYDOT maintenance crews, and inter-agency projects.
“We’re pleased that Ali has received this award for her hard work and dedication in making the state’s transportation system safer through new technologies,” said WYDOT Director Bill Panos. “We strive as a department to improve the safety on our system and to serve our customers. Ali is passionate about helping WYDOT improve the way it delivers vital road and travel information to the public and we are fortunate to have such a dedicated person as part of our WYDOT family.”
Gregg Fredrick, WYDOT’s chief engineer, nominated Ragan for the award, citing her ability to create an environment in which change and innovation is not just merely accepted but embraced.
“These are essential skills for leaders and she has used these skills to deliver projects that are innovative and revolutionary for the transportation industry,” Fredrick said. “Her innovation, collaboration with industry, and the deployment of technology has had a positive impact on the safety and mobility of highway users.”
Vince Garcia, ITS/GIS manager, praised Ragan’s ability to not only work collaboratively with different WYDOT programs but also with other state and federal agencies. He cited the Connected Vehicle pilot program and the creation of an eclipse map as examples of her ability to work with other entities and get the job done.
“She advocates for all stakeholders on each project to include her customers and WYDOT employees who must make any new system work properly,” Garcia said. “She delivers quality products and is recognized throughout WYDOT and by her customers for her quiet demeanor, her intellect and her ability to communicate on all levels. The projects she has been involved with and the work she has done to move those projects forward have helped improve highway safety in Wyoming.”
Ragan said she is honored by the recognition and attributed the success WYDOT has seen to the entire ITS/GIS program.
“The new technologies we’ve implemented to help improve highway safety are the result of the overall work of the entire team, which is always looking for ways to help keep the traveling public safe,” Ragan said. “I’m honored to be part of such a talented group of people who are dedicated to safety.