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Personnel type


Task Leaders

Clinical Investigators

Graduate Student Researchers


Advisory Board Members





Clifford E. Brubaker, PhD, RERC Co-Director, is Professor and Dean of the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences and Professor of Industrial Engineering, Bioengineering, Orthopedic Surgery and Neurological Surgery. He has also served as co-director of the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center on Wheelchair Mobility at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Brubaker has worked in the areas of Biomechanics, Rehabilitation Engineering, and Assistive Technology for nearly 30 years. Prior to his arrival at the University of Pittsburgh in 1991, Dr. Brubaker was Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Human Services at the University of Virginia where he also served as Director of the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center on Wheelchair Mobility. Dr. Brubaker has published extensively on the biomechanics of wheelchair performance and seating for persons with disabilities. He has been awarded four U.S. patents for inventions relating to mobility and seating. Dr. Brubaker is a past president of Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA) and is a fellow of both RESNA and The American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE). Dr. Brubaker became Dean of the School of Health Related Professions at the University of Pittsburgh in July 1991. Under his leadership, the School name was changed to the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences to reflect a new focus for the School. Most notable among changes reflecting this redirection of the School was the founding of the department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology and initiation of a new Ph.D. program in Rehabilitation Science.

Dr. Brubaker has been engaged in national and international activities and serves on several boards and advisory committees of international universities. Most recently, he served as Chair of the Steering Committee for Long Range Planning for the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research of the U.S. Department of Education. He also served on the Institute of Medicine Committee to Assess Rehabilitation Science and Engineering. The report of this committee was recently published by the National Academy Press under the title, Enabling America.

David M. Brienza, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Rehabilitation Science in the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology with additional professorial appointments in Bioengineering and Electrical Engineering. He is the Director of theSoft Tissue Mechanics Laboratory. From 1987 to 1991 he worked as a research assistant at the Rehabilitation Engineering Center at the University of Virginia. In 1991 he joined the faculty of the University of Pittsburgh. He has been working in the field of pressure ulcer prevention and seat cushion design for 11 years. He has made significant contributions in the areas of cushion design and soft tissue biomechanics including having a major role in the development of custom seating technology now marketed by PinDot by Invacare. He is currently consultant to several companies developing seat cushions. His research and development experience includes being principle investigator of NIH R01, NIH SBIR and PVA grants, task leader for NIDRR RERC research and development tasks, and project director for other research and development projects. Dr. Brienza is Chairperson of the RESNA special interest group on seating and mobility (>500 members) and is the RESNA representative to the National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel (NPUAP). Within NPUAP, Dr. Brienza is co-chair of the research committee.

Associate Director

Mary Jo Geyer, PhD, PT, CWS, CLT is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology at the University of Pittsburgh and has been the Associate Director of the RERC on Wheeled Mobility since January 2002. She also holds joint appointments in Physical Therapy and at the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine. She is certified as both a wound specialist and a lymphedema therapist. She received her bachelor’s degree from Slippery Rock University, a second bachelor’s degree in physical therapy from the University of Pittsburgh, her master’s degree in exercise science from Slippery Rock University and her doctorate degree in rehabilitation science from the University of Pittsburgh. For many years, Dr. Geyer owned and co-directed one of the first outpatient cardiac rehabilitation services in the country. Subsequently, she co-authored three editions of a cardiac rehabilitation text used nationally in physical therapy education programs. Her interest in wound and lymphedema management emerged later in her career while serving as the Director of Rehabilitation Services at Butler Memorial Hospital. She currently provides consulting services to long-term care organizations and private practice physical therapy groups as well as teaches wound and lymphedema management in several physical therapy entry-level doctoral programs. Her publications and research interests include a clinical trial to establish the effectiveness of pressure-reducing seat cushions and investigations of the fundamental biomechanical and physiological responses of the skin and soft tissue to external loading. She also assists in the development and evaluation of innovative support surface technologies and other medical devices used for the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of soft tissue injury. Her interest in support surface research has led to her significant involvement in the development of national and international standards for these devices.

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Task Leaders

Rory Cooper, PhD, is Chair and Professor of Rehabilitation Science and Technology, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, and professor of Bioengineering and Mechanical Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Cooper received his BS and M.Eng degrees in electrical engineering from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, in 1985 and 1986, respectively. He received a Ph.D. degree in electrical and computer engineering with a concentration in bioengineering from University of California at Santa Barbara in 1989. He is also a professor in the Division of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation within the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at the UPMC Health System. Dr. Cooper is director of the Pitt/VAMC Human Engineering Research Laboratories, which is a joint effort between the VA Pittsburgh Health Care System, University of Pittsburgh, and the UPMC Health System. Prior to coming to Pittsburgh, he was an Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Electrical Engineering at California State University, Sacramento, where he was coordinator of the Rehabilitation Engineering Program. Dr. Cooper maintains relationships with several companies in the areas of rehabilitation product design and has developed an ANSI-ISO Wheelchair Test Center. Dr. Cooper has authored or co-authored more than one hundred papers, expanded abstracts, and book chapters. He is the author of two books entitled "Rehabilitation Engineering Applied to Mobility and Manipulation" and "Wheelchair Selection and Configuration".

Dr. Cooper is a member of the board of directors of RESNA and a member of the RESNA/ANSI and ISO Wheelchair Standards Committees. He is a Trustee of the Paralyzed Veterans of America Spinal Cord Research Foundation and a former member of the board of directors for the Keystone Chapter.

Gina E. Bertocci, PhD, PE, is an Assistant Professor with the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology at the University of Pittsburgh. She graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with BS and MS degrees in Mechanical Engineering and a Ph.D. in Bioengineering. Dr. Bertocci's research interests include wheelchair transportation safety, biodynamics modeling, injury biomechanics and soft tissue biomechanics. Her wheelchair transportation safety research has focused on the assessment and prevention of occupant injury. Dr. Bertocci will chair the newly formed ANSI/RESNA Seating Standards, Wheelchair Seats Used for Transportation work group. She is also a member of the ANSI/RESNA Transport Wheelchair work group and provides research support for this group and parallel ISO efforts. Prior to joining the Rehabilitation Science and Technology Department, Dr. Bertocci managed and directed a multidiscipline engineering group at the University of Pittsburgh Facilities Management Division.

Michael L Boninger, MD, is an Assistant Professor and Research Director in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Division of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. He also holds adjunct appointments in the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology and the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Dr. Boninger also serves as the Co-Director for the Electromyography Laboratory at UPMC Health System. He graduated from the Ohio State University with degrees in both medicine and engineering. He received his specialty training in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the University of Michigan Medical Center where he served as Chief Resident. After his residency program, he completed an NIDRR Fellowship in Assistive Technology at the University of Pittsburgh. He is the Director for the Center for Assistive Technology at the UPMC Health System and also serves as its Medical Director. This clinic incorporates many disciplines in order to provide patients with the most appropriate assistive technology (Rehabilitation Engineering, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Medicine). Dr. Boninger also serves as the Medical Director of the Human Engineering Research Laboratories. His research interests include causes of upper extremity pain in individuals who rely on manual wheelchairs for mobility, fall prevention in the elderly, wheelchair biomechanics, and appropriate utilization of assistive technology.

Dr. Boninger currently is investigating upper extremity pain, its nature, common causes, effective strategies for prevention, and education to prevent and manage pain. This research is funded by two National Institutes of Health Awards, one of which is a Clinical Investigative Development Award through the National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research. The Association of Academic Physiatrists honored him with the Young Academician Award and the University of Pittsburgh as Outstanding Faculty at their Honors Convocation.

Shirley Fitzgerald, PhD, is currently the project coordinator for a National Arthritis Foundation research grant at UPMC Health System. She earned her MS in Health Science from Slippery Rock University, Summa Cum Laude, and her Ph.D. in Epidemiology from the University of Pittsburgh. She is currently a faculty in the School of Medicine and is serving as a consultant to the RERC. As an epidemiologist, she has had extensive experience in research design and analysis in a variety of medical and health-related studies. She has served as project coordinator for research projects for the National Lupis Foundation and an NIH study on Gene Therapy and Rheumatoid Arthritis. She has received many honors for academic excellence including a Dissertation Award from the National Arthritis Foundation.

Douglas A. Hobson, PhD, RERC Co-Director, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology. Dr. Hobson began and directed the Rehabilitation Engineering Program at the University of Tennessee, Memphis, TN from 1974 to 1990. It is now recognized worldwide for its contribution to the field of specialized seating and mobility. During the years from 1976-81, the UT program was awarded a NIHR REC grant for research and development of seating technology for children. Four product developments that occurred during this period have been marketed by commercial suppliers. Many of the seating principles now being taught to clinicians and suppliers were developed and communicated by the UT staff. The UT program co-hosted the International Seating Symposium, which is the single largest annual event in the wheelchair seating field (this symposium is now with the University of Pittsburgh.)

Dr. Hobson has over 30 years experience directing research, education, service delivery, and standards development activities in the field of assistive technology, and has many publications, book chapters and other forms of dissemination to his credit. During his career, he has managed as many as 24 staff and has had fiscal responsibility for annual budgets in excess of $3 million. He currently serves as chairman of both the SAE and ISO Standards Committees related to W/C securement, and the ANSI/RESNA SOWHAT (Sub-Committee on Wheelchairs and Transportation).

During 1990-92, he was President and CEO of a non-profit corporation in Winnipeg, Canada (ARCOR), whose central mission was the development and commercialization of independent living products for seniors. During that period four commercial products, specifically designed for use by older persons, were conceived and moved to the commercial sector. Dr. Hobson served as the President of RESNA during the period 1991-92, and was elected as a RESNA fellow in 1994. He has been the Co-Director of the RERC on Wheeled Mobility since 1992.

Margo Holm, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA, ABDA is Director of Post-Professional Education in Occupational Therapy at the University of Pittsburgh, and has a secondary appointment in Rehabilitation Science and Technology. With colleagues in occupational therapy, medicine, psychiatry, social psychology, behavioral medicine, nursing, and health care policy and finance at the University of Pittsburgh, University of Alabama, and Carnegie Mellon University she has received grants from the National Institute on Aging, Agency for Health Care Policy and Research, and the National Institute of Nursing Research and the National Institute for Disability and Rehabilitation Research. Because of her research expertise she has served on several CMS (formerly HCFA) Technical Expert Panels and has testified before the U. S. Subcommittee on Populations of the Vital and Health Statistics Committee. Dr. Holm was also contracted under CMS to be the Field Manager for data collection for the congressionally mandated Staff Time Measurement Study for the new Prospective Payment System for Medical Rehabilitation. She is the Principal Investigator of the Functional Evaluation in a Wheelchair Research Task (RT5) of the RERC on Wheeled Mobility at the University of Pittsburgh.

Patricia Karg, MSBME, is a Research Associate in the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology in the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh. Ms. Karg performs research in the area of wheelchair technology, including seating, mobility, and the vehicle safety of individuals transported seated in a wheelchair. Ms. Karg also participates in research involving the development and application of instrumentation for the measurement and assessment of biomechanical properties of buttock soft tissue. She is actively involved in the development of performance and safety standards for assistive technology. Ms. Karg has served as a member of the ANSI/RESNA Wheelchair Standards Committee since 1993. She has provided research support for the development of wheelchair transportation safety standards and currently chairs a working group developing standards for wheelchair seating technology. Prior to joining the Pitt faculty, Ms. Karg worked as a Project Engineer for ECRI, Plymouth Meeting, PA performing comparative evaluations of medical technology, establishing safety and performance standards, and providing technical consultation to the healthcare community. Ms. Karg began her career in the rehabilitation sciences as a graduate student at the University of Virginia were she performed research in the area of seating and vehicle transport safety of individuals in wheelchairs. Her research included the development of test protocols for evaluating the crashworthiness of adaptive seating components for wheelchairs during vehicle transportation.

Barry Romich, BS, PE, is Chairman and CEO of the Prentke Romich Co. in Wooster, OH. He received his B.S. in engineering from Case Institute of Technology in 1967. Mr. Romich has been active in the development and marketing of augmentative and alternative communication aids for persons with severe disabilities since 1966. He has published and presented widely in the field. He is a Fellow and former Board member and officer of RESNA, and he has participated in many industry and consumer advocacy activities.

Elaine Trefler, OTR, MEd, FAOTA, ATP is an Assistant Professor in the Departments of Rehabilitation Science and Technology and Occupational Therapy. Ms. Trefler was trained as a physical and occupational therapist with a master's degree in Special Education and Rehabilitation. She has over twenty-five years experience in the provision of assistive technology for persons with physical disabilities in the United States, Europe, and Canada. During her career, she has developed and carried-out many training programs at the undergraduate, post-graduate and continuing education levels on various topics related to assistive technology. The course of study for her master's degree focused on rehabilitation counseling. She received the award of Fellow in the American Occupational Therapy Association (FAOTA), one of the highest awards given by the American Occupational Therapy Association. This award was given for her leadership and contributions as an occupational therapist in the assistive technology field.

In addition, Ms. Trefler administers the training and education dissemination components of the RERC. In this capacity, she has been responsible for the coordination and success of the International Seating Symposium, which she co-hosts with the University of British Columbia. Her background and experience in seating/mobility issues, educational background in vocational rehabilitation counseling and ability to develop education materials for dissemination make her an invaluable member of the RST/RERC. Ms. Trefler has developed and teaches courses in seating assessment, ethics and service delivery, as well as case-based learning techniques.

Linda van Roosmalen, PhD, IDSA, is a research scientist at the University of Pittsburgh. She has her PhD in Rehabilitation Science from the University of Pittsburgh and has BS and MS degrees in Industrial Design Engineering from the Delft Technical University in the Netherlands. Dr. van Roosmalen’s research interests are in wheelchair transportation safety and wheelchair occupant biomechanics during motor vehicle transport. She has been involved in the research and development process of products related to wheelchair crashworthiness and occupant safety during transport in motor vehicles. Her other interests are in product ergonomics, product usability and universal design. She actively participates in ANSI/RESNA and ISO standards committees related to wheelchair transportation safety. She has published nationally and internationally in peer reviewed journals and presented at various conferences and meetings.

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Clinicial Investigators

Sondra Balouris Brubaker, MS, MPT is an Instructor in the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences. In addition to her physical therapy training, she is also certified by the American College of Sports Medicine as an Exercise Specialist. She was a Project Coordinator for a clinical trial evaluating the use of a pressure relief reminder and compliance system, Pressor Alert‘, from Cleveland Medical Devices, Inc. Sondra is also Executive Director of a non-profit organization called Tech-Link Program of Pittsburgh. Tech-Link provides educational programs for middle school and high school age students with disabilities: Programs include job mentoring, work site tours, internships and participation in robotic activities.

Michael L Boninger, MD (see bio-sketch above)

Mary Ellen Buning, PhD, MS, OTR/L, ATP, has been an occupational therapist for 25 years having earned a BSOT at the University of Florida and an MSOT at Colorado State University. For the last 10 years she has practiced in the area of assistive technology and has broad experience in providing community-based, family and consumer-centered assistive technology services. She has successfully written and managed assistive technology-focused grants and is experienced in staff development and continuing education. As a founding board member of FortNet, the Fort Collins Community Computer Network, she gained experience with building and expanding community networks. She has a strong interest in using the World Wide Web as a vehicle to support community-building activities and for consumer education. She is currently a Research Associate and doctoral student in the Rehabilitation Science and Technology Department. Her dissertation topic will be on use of the WWW as a decision support tool to build consumer empowerment in mobility device selection decisions.

Edmund Lopresti, PhD, is a Whitaker Fellow and full-time doctoral student in Bioengineering. He has a background in electrical and computer engineering and research experience in biological systems modeling and analysis of user interfaces for memory aids and powered mobility.

Mark R. Schmeler, MS, OTR/L, ATP, is an Occupational Therapist and Instructor in the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology University of Pittsburgh and is pursuing a Doctoral degree. He is also the Director of Clinical Services in the Center for Assistive Technology, the service delivery component of the department that provides direct AT interventions and services to people of all ages and disability types. In his clinical role he is also responsible for developing and implementing new service delivery models in various settings, which includes measuring outcomes to justify the need for interventions. He is currently a member of the Standing Committee of the Technology Special Interest Section (TSIS) of the American Occupational Therapy Association where he holds the position of editor of the Technology SIS Quarterly and has developed studies to determine best practices in AT assessments and outcomes measures. In his current clinical and academic positions he has taken a leadership role in measuring clinical outcomes of AT interventions and services. He has also worked closely with government and third party organizations to develop measures for assessing need and appropriateness of AT interventions and services.

Donald Spaeth, PhD, ATP, has a Masters in Rehabilitation Technology and has been employed in rehabilitation service agencies and industry. His dissertaion work was on control interface design for power mobility devices.

Elaine Trefler, OT, MEd, FAOTA, ATP (see bio-sketch above)

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Graduate Student Researchers (GSRs)

Dalthea Brown, PT, ATP, is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh Physical Therapy Program. She has 20 years of experience as a health professional. For 12 of those years, she specialized in treatment and equipment acquisition for individuals with neuromuscular disorders. She is enrolled in the University's advanced Master's PT Program as well as the Rehabilitation Science Doctoral Program. The focus of her doctoral thesis is dynamic seating.Julianna Arva, BSc.

Barabara Crane, MA, PT, ATP is a doctoral candidate within the Rehabilitation Science and Technology Department. She has completed her preliminary and comprehensive examinations and is now prepared to engage in her dissertation research. She is a Physical Therapist with 12 years of experience in seating and wheeled mobility and rehabilitation practice. She is also a certified Assistive Technology Practitioner.

Tamara Mills, MS, OTR/L is a Research Associate and a doctoral candidate in the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences. She has also earned a Certificate in Assistive and Rehabilitation Technology at the University of Pittsburgh. Tamara has more than 3 years of clinical experience in physical rehabilitation. She has previously conducted consumer-focused research on universal design features in residential homes, and research on predicting impairment, disability, and quality of life in stroke survivors using a performance-based outcome measurement tool.

Lucy Spruill, BS, MSW, is currently Attendant Care Program Director of the United Cerebral Palsy in Pittsburgh. She used a wheelchair for more than 30 years. Ms. Spruill has served on local, state, and national accessible transportation committees and has been a trainer and consultant in the field of accessible transportation for people with disabilities for over 15 years and has served as ADA coordinator for the City of Pittsburgh for the past 5 years. Ms. Spruill also has served on the State Developmental Disabilities Council for 8 years. She is a doctoral student in the SHRS with a strong interest in disabilities studies.

Dongran Ha, BSc, is an RST graduate student working with Dr. Bertocci in the area of wheelchair crashworthiness. She has a BS degree in Civil Engineering with an emphasis on computational mechanics. Ms. Ha has experience in the area of wheelchair seating system testing and computer modeling.

Jeanne M. Zanca, MPT is a doctoral student and Research Associate in the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology, University of Pittsburgh. Ms. Zanca completed her undergraduate training in Biology and Psychology at Rutgers University in May 1999 and earned her Master of Physical Therapy Degree at the University of Pittsburgh in June 2002. Ms. Zanca’s research interests include pressure ulcer diagnosis and prevention, and pressure ulcer research funding trends, which she is studying for the National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel. Ms. Zanca participates in Research Task 3.

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Jean Webb (Administrator II) has been an invaluable member of the RERC team and will continue to provide administrative and clerical support as assistant to the various directors.

Ron Schwesinger (Financial Administrator) is an experienced University financial administrator, who will provide ongoing support to the various directors related to financial and contractual matters.

Joseph Ruffing (Communications Specialist II) serves as Communications Specialist for the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences and Technology and is responsible for creating, managing and updating the department's web sites and web server. Mr. Ruffing also designs and produces a variety of internal and external promotional pieces for the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences and Technology. He has over 18 years of professional experience in the field of graphic design, communications and related technologies. He holds an Associate Degree in Specialized Technology, majoring in Visual Communication from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh with an additional 1600 hours of specialized training related to graphic design and web based computer applications.

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Advisory Board Members

Paul Dick received his M.Ed in Rehab Counseling. He has 30 years experience in health care management including a position as senior vice president of a multi-hospital health system. Mr. Dick has been an activist at local, state and national levels for 35 years. He has used a wheelchair for 44 years. He is currently serving as President of the Board of the Directors at the United Cerebral Palsy in Pittsburgh.

Janice Herman, MS, PT, ATP, received her degree in Physical Therapy from the University Southern California. Ms. Hunt-Herman has 20 years clinical practice in rehab and orthopedics and 8 years in AT work, specializing in seating and mobility. She is active in curriculum development for AT courses and lectures internationally. Her present research is on neurochemistry of skin as it relates to wound healing/breakdown. An active participant in RESNA, she has led a team in writing advanced knowledge and skills needed for seating and mobility.

Jean Minkel, MA, PT, is the founder of an independent consulting firm that specializes in the area of assistive technology. She provides consulting services to service delivery programs, corporations, organizations, and educational institutions. She has been involved in coordinating a quality assurance program in assistive technology service delivery for the Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA). Prior to her consulting practice, Ms. Minkel was Director of the Seating and Mobility Program of the Center for Rehabilitation Technology at Helen Hayes Hospital (Haverstraw, NY). She was responsible for administrating a program that addressed the seating, mobility, and adaptive equipment needs of people with disabilities. In addition she determined clinically relevant research topics and participated in ongoing clinical research related to seating and mobility. Ms. Minkel has also been actively involved in the development of ANSI/RESNA wheelchair standards and has recently been appointed to Chair the new Sub-committee on Wheelchair Seating Standards.

Rick McWilliams is currently Program Manager for the Center for Independent Living of Southwestern Pennsylvania. As Program Manager, Mr. McWilliams is responsible for peer counseling, transitioning, housing services, deafness services, information and referral, and Pennsylvania's Initiative on Assistive Technology, equipment loan services and AsTECH fee-for-service. Mr. McWilliams uses a wheelchair.

Richard Salcido, M.D. serves as Chairman, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine for the University of Pennsylvania Health System, Philadelphia, PA. The Department of Rehabilitation Medicine was the first established department of its kind in the country and enjoys a long-standing, excellent reputation for general physical medicine and rehabilitation as well as several rehabilitation specialties. These specialties include musculoskletal disorders, neurological disorders, aging, trauma, occupational disease and industrial rehabilitation. Dr. Salcido also directs the Rehabilitation Medicine Residency Program at the University of Pennsylvania where he is the William J. Erdman, II, Professor of Rehabilitation Medicine. Dr. Salcido is board certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and holds a certification from the American Academy of Pain Management as well. His specialized clinical and research interests in chronic wound management and ischemia reperfusion complement his role as editor-in-chief of the peer-reviewed journal, Advances in Skin and Wound Care.

Allan Sampson, PhD, is Professor of Statistics and Chair of the Department of Statistics at the University of Pittsburgh where he has been on the faculty since 1978. Prior to that, he taught at Florida State University and was Manager of the Department of Biostatistics at Abbot Laboratories. His research interests include multivariate analysis, clinical trials, and reliability theory. Professor Sampson has worked with the US Census Bureau, the American Statistical Association, and the Committee on National Statistics to improve disability statistics. He received his A.B. in Mathematics from UCLA in 1966, and his M.S. and Ph.D. in Statistics from Stanford University in 1968 and 1970. He is also a long-time wheelchair user.

Lucy Spruill, MSW, (see bio-sketch above).

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Rachid Aissaoui, PhD, is an Associate Professor at the Physical Education Department, Universite de Montreal and a full researcher at the Mechanical Engineering Department, Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal. He will consult on task D-4-Postural Measures.

Mark B. Friedman, PhD, is President and founder of AugmenTech, Inc., a local biomedical and rehabilitation engineering company, and is an adjunct Professor in the Biomedical Engineering Program at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), where he teaches Rehabilitation Engineering. Prior to founding AugmenTech, Dr. Friedman was Director of the Human-Machine Interactions Laboratory in the Robotics Institute at CMU where he worked on interface issues for control of industrial robots. For the decade of the 1980's, while Dr. Friedman worked at the Robotics Institute, he also served as volunteer Director of the Rehabilitation Engineering Department at the Rehabilitation Institute of Pittsburgh and Head of their Technical Volunteer Program. In 1980, Dr. Friedman took a brief leave of absence from CMU to co-found Sentient Systems Technology, which is now a leading producer of augmentative communication systems. Dr. Friedman has served on NIH/ SBIR review committees and on the Board of Directors of the Allegheny County Development Alliance for Senior Citizens. He is currently a member of the Board of Trustees of the Western Pennsylvania School for the Deaf. Dr. Friedman will contribute in Task R-2: Dynamic Seating for Comfort.

Jules Legal, Design Consultant, has 35 years of experience in research, clinical and technical environments involve design ,fabrication and launching of commercial products. He will contribute to designs and technical documentation related to technology transfer activities.

James Reswick, ScD (Hon.) became Associate Director for Research Sciences of the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research in March 1988, served as Acting Director for two years, and continued as leader of the Research Sciences Division. Previously, he was director of the Rehabilitation Research and Development Evaluation Unit at the Veteran's Administration Medical Center in Washington, DC and Baltimore, MD and before that, was a Research Scientist at the NIHR, the predecessor of NIDRR. He has led rehabilitation research groups at USC-Rancho Los Amigos Hospital where he directed one the first of the RERCs. Prior to Rancho, Dr. Reswick was at Case Western Reserve University and at M.I.T. He held faculty appointments at each of these three universities. He is a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences and of the National Academy of Engineering. He was the founding President of RESNA, is a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers and RESNA, and is an Associate Member of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. He is now retired and continues a busy consulting and engineering design practice in the field of assistive technology for persons with disabilities. Dr. Reswick will contribute primarily in technology transfer activities.

Stephen Stadelmeier, MSc., an Industrial Designer, is Associate Professor of Design and Head of the Industrial Design Program at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA., where he has been since 1977. He has maintained an active production design consulting practice since 1975. His clients include Mercedes Benz, Robert Bosch, Mellon Institute, and the State Department. Professor Stadelmeier speaks and publishes widely on the subject of user-product interaction and design education. He holds a BFA, 1972, from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, an MS in Industrial Design from Cornell University, 1977, and is a member of the Industrial Designers Society of America. He will involve CMU design students in RERC design activities, as well as personally participate in the RERC's technology transfer activities. 

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