Meeting local needs for training, technical assistance, and research in transportation

Conference Speakers and Bios


Deputy Secretary State Transportation Engineer

Burt Morey is the Deputy Secretary and State Transportation Engineer at the Kansas Department of Transportation. He has filled this role since February 2019.

Upon graduation from Kansas State University with a bachelor's of science degree in Civil Engineering, Burt began a career in transportation engineering. He has worked in this field for 29 years. In that time, he has worked for various local governments and the private sector in bridge design, construction engineering, and contract administration. He served as the KDOT Metro Engineer in Johnson County from 2007 to 2012. In 2012, Burt was selected to be the Project Director for the Johnson County Gateway design-build project; KDOT's first design-build and largest project at the time. From November 2015 until his recent appointment as the State Transportation Engineer, he served as the City Engineer of Overland Park. 

Burt and his wife Jan live in rural Leavenworth County. They have two adult children and two German short-haired pointers.

Presentation Description

KDOT Update.


Director and Research Professor National Center for Asphalt Technology (NCAT) at Auburn University

Randy West is the Director of the National Center for Asphalt Technology (NCAT) at Auburn University and a Research Professor in Auburn’s Civil & Environmental Engineering Department.

He has worked as a pavement engineer for over 30 years, beginning in 1988 as a bituminous research engineer with the Florida DOT where he managed the asphalt research laboratory, assisted with asphalt certification courses, pavement forensic investigations, and directed lab and field research studies.

From 1995-2003, he worked for APAC Inc. where he established and managed the company’s AASHTO-accredited pavement materials laboratory, helped implement the Superpave mix design system, established training programs for pavement materials design, production, and construction, and lead a number of initiatives to formulate and launch best practices for asphalt production operations. In 2001, he was promoted to lead the company’s engineering services units.

In 2003, Randy came to NCAT as an Assistant Director. He was named Director in 2007. NCAT is a world-renowned pavement research center working for clients including numerous state DOTs, FHWA, NAPA, and businesses in the asphalt paving industry. NCAT’s mission is to provide innovative, relevant, and implementable research, technology development, and education that advances safe, durable, and sustainable asphalt pavements.

Randy received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Civil Engineering from Auburn University, and his Ph.D. from the University of Florida. He is a registered professional engineer in Florida, Georgia, and Alabama.

Presentation Description

Although many states are moving forward with the implementation of Balanced Mix Design (BMD), they are moving at different paces toward this goal. NCAT developed the AASHTO provisional standards for BMD but these are just framework standards, allowing each state to choose the test methods and criteria that best suit their materials, climates, and project categories. This year, NCAT began working on an NCHRP project to develop guidelines for BMD implementation. This presentation will share a preliminary roadmap for implementation and highlight some of the key steps along that process.


General Manager - Ames Engineering, Inc.

As the Ames Engineering manager and production chief, Dustin is responsible for the day to day operations, new equipment design, manufacturing, and quality control.  With over 16 years of experience building products and responding to customer needs, Dustin is always available to customers, ready to support their challenges in the field.  Dustin studied electrical engineering at Iowa State University.

Presentation Description

  • Common terminology and hardware component overview of road profilers
  • How a profilograph differs from a road profiler
  • What is IRI (International Roughness Index)
  • Understanding localized roughness in lieu of traditional bumps & dips
  • Putting your profiler to work (getting the most function of data)
  • Tips for advanced field practices (GPS tracer & photo/video logging)


Research Operations Engineer at MnROAD

Short Bio

  • University of Minnesota / Professional Engineer (State of Minnesota)
  • 7 years - Braun Intertec – Minnesota based consultant 
  • Worked on the Long-Term Pavement Performance project (LTPP)
  • 24 years - Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT)
  • MnROAD Operations Engineer.  Day to day activities including research and partnerships including National Road Research Alliance (NRRA) and other Transportation Research Board and LTPP expert task group activities.
  • He loves his family, coworkers, and dog Jesse not necessarily always in that order.

Presentation Description

Ben Worel will present on current practices and research going on within the Minnesota Department of Transpiration (MnDOT) related to effectively manage cold weather issues and their impacts on our transportation network.   He will cover MnDOT current asphalt frost-free designs along with how Minnesota protects its roadways with the use of seasonal load premiums and restrictions each year.   Asphalt research findings from MnROAD (pavement research facility) and future topics planned will also be covered.


Consulting Engineer, Blankenship Asphalt Tech and Training - Richmond, KY

Phil graduated in 1991 with a BS in Civil Engineering and in 1993 with an MS in Civil Engineering from the University of Kentucky.  During his graduate research at UK, Phil worked at the Asphalt Institute, Lexington, KY, in the Strategic Highway Research Program.  He assisted in developing N-Design to simulate field mixture compaction in the Superpave gyratory compactor.

From 1993-1995, Phil was the Superpave Coordinator and managed the Asphalt Binder Laboratory for the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet, Division of Materials in Frankfort, KY.

Phil joined Koch Pavement Solutions in December 1995.  He was one of Koch’s project development engineers for new asphalt technology; specifically, the development of a Reflective Crack Relief System (Strata).

In 2007, Phil joined the Asphalt Institute as the Senior Research Engineer.  Phil managed AI’s Mixture and Performance Testing Laboratory, performing private and government testing.  He also coordinated the Mix Design Technology course along with other lab courses and webinars.

In 2017, Phil started Blankenship Asphalt Tech and Training to open a consulting engineering company that uses his agency, industry, and association combined experience. In 2019, he opened an asphalt testing laboratory focused on lab-to-pavement innovation.

Phil is a member of the Transportation Research Board (TRB) binder and mechanical testing committees. Serves on the executive board for the Association of Asphalt Paving Technologists (AAPT), and chairs ASTM subcommittee D04.26 on Fundamental Mechanistic Testing.

Presentation Description

Aramid Reinforcing Fibers in HMA.


Vice President of Sales for Collaborative Aggregates, LLC

Steve Wallace has a background in the mechanical engineering and infrastructure improvement industry throughout the Ohio Valley and other regions of the U.S. Steve has more than two decades of experience as a Manager Partner of construction and strategic planning as well as Senior Partner for business development for scaled public and private road building and infrastructure disciplines.

Steve Wallace has spent the most recent decade of his professional career in the asphalt pavement industry developing, marketing, and distributing a full range of pavement preservation products. His primary focus is introducing asphalt rejuvenators to state DOT, county, municipal agency managers, and technicians plus contractors as part of their pavement network preservation strategies and contracting service offerings.

Steve is developing and implementing a national sales strategy and a sales team for commercial distribution of Delta S, a liquid plant-based asphalt rejuvenator and warm mix asphalt chemistry plus other related commercialized chemical product formulations of the Warner Badcock Institute for Green Chemistry. Steve operates from an office in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Presentation Description

Steve Wallace will be speaking to Delta Mist spray-applied penetrating asphalt rejuvenator.  This is a plant-based technology, environmentally GREEN chemistry very effective in rejuvenating the rheological properties of asphalt binder and extending the service life of the pavement structure.

Surface applied rejuvenators are one of the earliest stage pavement preservation treatments agencies can use on their paved surfaces. Delta Mist technology is formulated to decrease the viscosity of the binder material, to reduce the rate of loss of fines, and to retard crack propagation. 


Director of Engineering for the Asphalt Institute

Dr. Mark Buncher is the Director of Engineering for the Asphalt Institute, working at their Headquarters in Lexington KY since 1998 (22 years).  The Institute's mission is to serve both users and producers of asphalt by advancing technology and improving pavement performance through programs of education, engineering and research.  Prior to joining the A.I., Mark served in the U.S. Air Force for 16 years as a Civil Engineering Officer.  He is a Professional Engineer, has his B.S. in Civil Engineering from Missouri University of Science and Technology, M.S. in C.E. from the University of New Mexico, and his Ph.D. from Auburn University.  Mark and his wife Cathy have 7 children and 5 grandchildren.

Presentation Description

Dr. Buncher will discuss the size of the airfield market and how airfields provide unique pavement challenges that are different from highways. He will show the two predominant airfield specifications for U.S. military and civilian airports, then take a close look at the FAA’s P-401 specification for airfield paving and its most recent changes. Both the FA and the military now have a fuel-resistant asphalt mix to be used on surfaces course where fuel resistance is needed.  Finally, the procedure of cutting back the longitudinal joint will be covered since it is required by both airfield specifications.

Dr. Buncher will transition from airfield specifications into a broader discussion of longitudinal joints for roadway pavements, where low density and high permeability often cause early cracking and raveling.  He will cover best practices for both constructing and specifying longitudinal joints, including a deep look into joint density.  New materials and technologies for improved longitudinal joint performance will be mentioned.