Transportation Research Center Inc. recognized with Dwight Blaser Meritorious Service Award

Posted: April 8, 2019

2019 blaser award recipient
President and CEO of TRC, Brett Roubinek, accepted the award on behalf of TRC at the CAR external advisory board meeting on April 5, 2019

The recipient of the 2019 Dwight Blaser Meritorious Service Award is the Transportation Research Center Inc. (TRC). This award is presented annually to individuals or organizations whose sustained and extraordinary services have had a significant and lasting effect on the advancement of Ohio State’s Center for Automotive Research (CAR).

Since the creation of CAR, TRC has provided testing facilities and workspace for researchers, faculty, students and motorsports teams including the four time national champion EcoCAR 3 team.

“TRC is literally where the rubber hits the road as we bring to life our ideas of a greener future into a reality in the form of a hybrid Camaro on their test tracks,” said EcoCAR team member, Greg Jankord. “CAR's partnership with TRC has provided EcoCAR with the necessary environment to safely test, calibrate and verify our vehicle from basic safety checks to dynamic handling to autonomous testing. TRC and the amazing people that work there are a very significant reason why our team has had the success we have seen. Thank you TRC for everything you have done for our team.”

TRC has also played an enormous role in the success of the Venturi Buckeye Bullet (VBB) team by way of Roger Schroer, head of driver training at TRC and driver of the VBB3.

“TRC provides a multitude of world class resources to Ohio State students, faculty and staff” said David Cooke, CAR assistant director and former team leader of the Buckeye Bullet landspeed racing program.  “The combination of facilities, testing expertise and advanced driver training available at TRC has given many generations of Ohio State automotive projects the opportunity to perform vehicle validation, calibration and tuning utilizing the same techniques as major automotive OEMs and to add yet another dimension to the hands-on educational approach Ohio State takes to training the future leaders of the automotive industry.”

“In addition to these impactful opportunities and the direct support of the entire leadership of TRC, one staff member in particular has been key to working directly with the students and driving the crazy student-built vehicles to unimaginable speeds.  Roger Schroer currently serves as the coordinator of student motorsports testing, an advisor to many of the teams and for the past 15 years has been the pilot of the world’s fastest electric vehicle, the Buckeye Bullet. For the Bullet team Roger’s efforts go FAR above and beyond the duties of the average racing driver. Roger is a key member of the team, actively participating in the design, development and testing of the vehicles and constantly working to connect the students with industry experts and learning opportunities. It has been my true pleasure to work with Roger and the entire family at TRC for the past 15 years,” said Cooke. “TRC constantly works to support our teams in every way possible and to enhance their educational experience in an extremely meaningful way that to me defines the goals of the Dwight Blaser Meritorious Service Award.”

A founding member of the CAR Membership Consortia, TRC works closely with CAR to engage in original, highly leveraged precompetitive research related to automotive and transportation systems.

 “The participation of TRC in the CAR industrial Consortium since its inception in 1999 has been a key to the success of our pre-competitive research programs,” said CAR Director, Giorgio Rizzoni. "We are delighted to see that in recent years TRC’s membership has been specifically focused on enhancing and extending the partnerships on the subject of connected and automated vehicles."

The longstanding relationship with CAR and TRC doesn’t end there. These two organizations partner regularly on government funded projects, and have most recently teamed up in the ARPA-E NEXTCAR project; further, CAR and TRC are often partners in programs funded by NHTSA through VRTC, its Vehicle Research and Test Center.

NHTSA-VRTC, physically located on the grounds of TRC, has funded countless Ohio State graduate student and researchers over the years, providing them the opportunity to gain hands on experience working with TRC engineers performing automotive safety research at their test lab on TRC’s proving grounds.  

We are proud of our partnership with TRC, and look forward to the future of this unique relationship.

Category: Awards