Wayne Kittelson Receives ITE Theodore M. Matson Memorial Award

August 19, 2013

Kittelson & Associates, Inc. is pleased to announce that our founder—Wayne Kittelson, PE—has been selected as the 2013 recipient of the Theodore M. Matson Memorial Award by the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE). Since 1957, the award has been given annually in recognition of outstanding contributors to the field of traffic engineering. Wayne’s name joins a list of respected practitioners who have devoted themselves to the research, advancement, and application of traffic engineering principles. He accepted the award at the ITE Annual Meeting and Exhibit earlier this month.

The following is an excerpt from the August 2013 issue of the ITE Journal, which features an article written by Wayne about “Putting the Matson Legacy into Practice.” The article may be read in full by subscribers to the ITE Article Library or by picking up a hard copy of the ITE Journal.

Theodore Matson was an educator and served for a period as director of the Bureau of Highway Traffic at Yale University. This was one of the primary avenues he used to make his very significant contributions to our profession. Given Mr. Matson’s background as well as the overall intent of the award, it seems fitting for me to use this as an opportunity to discuss how we might emulate Mr. Matson in maximizing the effects of our own contributions. The thoughts that follow segue from the theme that we contribute the most when we work with, through, and for others who individually and collectively represent the best our profession has to offer.

It is easy enough to say we should look for every opportunity to align ourselves with the best in our profession, but exactly who are these people and how can they be identified?

Theodore Matson is a good example. In retrospect he clearly had a very significant and enduring impact on our profession, but what were the personal characteristics that made him so effective? His prominent role as an educator gives us a good hint. His focus was on the development and success of others, and it was through them that his greatest contributions came to light.

It is critically important that the people with whom we align ourselves be as committed to helping elevate our game as we are. In other words, we should align ourselves with people who have an outward focus toward the success of the team and not just the individual. For this to work, of course we have to be outward-focused too so that, like Mr. Matson, the cumulative effects of the team far exceed the contributions each member would have made individually.

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