Pinar Keskinocak Honored with the Outstanding Professional Education Award

Posted April 5, 2018 | Atlanta, GA

Professor Pinar Keskinocak, the Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering’s William W. George Chair and the College of Engineering ADVANCE Professor, has received the Outstanding Professional Education Award from Georgia Tech. The award recognizes a faculty member for their contribution to the field of professional education at Georgia Tech. The award will be presented at the annual Georgia Tech Faculty and Staff Honors Luncheon on Wednesday, April 11, 2018.

Keskinocak is a co-founder and director of the Center for Health and Humanitarian Systems (CHHS), an interdisciplinary research center at Georgia Tech. CHHS aims to transform health and humanitarian systems through education, outreach and innovative solutions. In bestowing this award, the Faculty Honors Committee recognized Keskinocak’s leadership of CHHS, as well as her efforts to promote health and humanitarian services through the professional education Certificate Program for Health and Humanitarian Supply Chain Management (HHSCM).

Letters from industry, fellow colleagues, and program graduates further underscored the value of these efforts. For example, Marta Wnorowska, supply manager with Doctors Without Borders, said, “Sometimes (especially when working in emergencies), it is not possible to find time, reflect more, and go more into details of the tools, techniques used. Training at Georgia Tech has given me this opportunity: to step back, to think more and to get a more technical approach. Overall, the training has given me an irreplaceable opportunity to improve my skills as a supply manager.”  

Former ISyE colleagues Özlem Ergun and Julie Swann are honorary recipients of the award, as they co-founded CHHS and jointly developed the HHSCM certificate program together with Keskinocak.

Keskinocak expressed her gratitude to The UPS Foundation, Andrea L. Laliberte, Pete Quinones, and Richard E. and Charlene O. Zalesky, for their generosity in providing scholarships to support a select subset of HHSCM participants. Joe Ruiz, the director of the UPS Humanitarian Relief and Resilience Program noted, “By training and mentoring professionals as well as undergraduate and graduate students in the courses and research projects, Professor Keskinocak strives to promote access to quality education in this area to improve health and humanitarian systems and human lives worldwide.”

Keskinocak’s research focuses on the applications of operations research and management science with societal impact, particularly health and humanitarian applications, supply chain management, and logistics/transportation. Her recent work has addressed infectious disease modeling, evaluating intervention strategies, and resource allocation; catch-up scheduling for vaccinations; hospital operations management; disaster preparedness and response (e.g., prepositioning inventory); debris management; and centralized and decentralized price and lead time decisions. She has worked on projects with companies, governmental and non-governmental organizations, and health care providers, including American Red Cross, CARE, Carter Center, CDC, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, Emory University, and the Task Force for Global Health.

Keskinocak donated the award prize as a "seed gift" toward creating a permanent endowment in support of CHHS. If you are interested in making a gift toward the fund, in honor of the center's outstanding work, please contact ISyE's Director of Development Nancy Sandlin at nsandlin@isye.gatech.edu.