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PPI Authors

PPI Industry Content Experts

PPI, a Kaplan Company, utilizes some of the best-known industry experts to create our Engineering, Architecture, and interior design exam prep products. View the author bios below to learn more about each content expert.

Featured Authors

David Kent Ballast, FAIA, CSI, NCIDQ-Cert. No. 9425

David Kent Ballast, FAIA, CSI, NCIDQ Certification No. 9425, owns Architectural Research Consulting, a firm offering information and management services to architects, interior designers, and the construction industry. Mr. Ballast taught interior construction and other courses at Arapahoe Community College for over 20 years.
A licensed architect in the state of Colorado, Mr. Ballast has written many books on design topics.

Michael R. Lindeburg, PE

Michael R. Lindeburg, PE, is one of the best-known authors of engineering textbooks and references. His books and courses have influenced millions of engineers around the world. Since 1975, he has authored over 40 engineering reference and exam preparation books.
He has spent thousands of hours teaching engineering to students and practicing engineers. He holds bachelor of science and master of science degrees in industrial engineering from Stanford University.

Additional PPI Authors

Alan Williams, PhD, SE, FICE, C Eng

Alan Williams is a registered professional engineer and structural engineer in California, a Fellow and Life Member of the Institution of Civil Engineers, and a Chartered Engineer in the United Kingdom. He obtained his BS and PhD degrees at Leeds University.
His extensive practical experience includes the design and construction of bridges, schools, and industrial and commercial structures. Currently he is employed as a senior engineer with the California Department of Transportation. Dr. Williams has published textbooks on structural engineering design, structural analysis, seismic design, and reinforced concrete design.

Ali A. Iqbal, PE

Ali Iqbal, PE, is currently an Assistant Civil Engineer for the City of Sausalito. He holds bachelor of science in civil engineering from California State University - Sacramento. He continues to work in public service after roughly five years working for the County of Marin, where he split time between the Engineering and Land Development Divisions.
Prior to being a public servant, he spent several years in various consulting firms. His consulting experience ranges from single family land development to major light rail transportation projects. In the past, he has taught review courses for the EIT exam and has previously co-authored: Civil Engineering FE Exam Preparation Workbook and PPI FE Civil Exams—Five Full Practice Exams With Step-By-Step Solutions.

Allan Y. Ng, MSCE, PLS

Allan Ng, MSCE, PLS, is a licensed land surveyor in California and a lecturer in the Department of Civil Engineering at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. He teaches courses on elementary and advanced surveying, GPS, and photogrammetry and LiDAR digital mapping, and he consults on boundary survey and land development projects.
Mr. Ng received his master of science in civil engineering with a geomatics emphasis from Purdue University, Indiana, and his bachelor of science in civil engineering with a land surveying option from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona.

Beth Lin Hartmann, PE

Beth Lin Hartmann PE, is a construction engineering professor at Iowa State University, a small business owner, and a retired Naval officer. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in architecture and a Master of Science degree in civil engineering with a specialization in construction engineering and management from Iowa State University.
Through the Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps (NROTC) program, she was commissioned as an ensign in the United States Navy’s Civil Engineer Corps. Ms. Hartmann is the owner and CEO of Exxo Consulting, LLC, which provides training, professional services, and advice to businesses seeking design and construction contracts with federal and state agencies.

Bruce A. Wolle, MSE, PE

Bruce A. Wolle, MSE, PE, is currently licensed in 22 states and provides professional engineering services in geotechnical and materials engineering.
He has provided senior engineering supervision and management for over 25 years for projects in the fields of surveying, field explorations and drilling, seismic damage characterizations, design recommendations, and construction quality control/quality assurance in renewable energy development. Mr. Wolle has over 15 years of experience as a supervisor, coordinator, and instructor for review and preparatory courses for civil engineers. He holds a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from New Mexico State University and a master of science in engineering degree in civil engineering (geotechnical and seismic studies) from Arizona State University.

Christine A. Subasic, PE

Christine A. Subasic, PE, is a registered engineer in North Carolina and Virginia. She has been a consulting architectural engineer for the past 13 years, specializing in structural and masonry design and standards development. Ms. Subasic earned a BS degree in architectural engineering from Pennsylvania State University.

Daniel C. Deckler, PhD, PE

Daniel C. Deckler, PhD, PE, has worked on a wide variety of projects, including the space shuttle, space station, and anti-submarine warfare systems. He is now a professor of engineering at the University of Akron Wayne College, where he teaches courses in mechanical, electrical, and civil engineering.
He earned his master's degree in mechanical engineering and his PhD in engineering from the University of Akron.

Gary E. Demele, FAIA, NCARB

Gary E. Demele, FAIA, NCARB, received his degree in architecture from the College of Environmental Design, University of California, Berkeley. He is a licensed Architect in 4 states and is NCARB certified. Busch Architects, Inc., Minneapolis, Minnesota is a professional practice specializing in educational, religious, health care and recreational buildings where Gary has been vice president since 2008.

George Cole, PhD, PE, PLS

George M. Cole, PhD, PE, PLS, is a practicing surveyor. He is currently vice president of Applied Geodetic Services, Inc. He holds a bachelor of science degree from Tulane University and a master of science degree from Florida State University. Among his numerous publications are the Fundamentals of Surveying Sample Examination (PPI) and Water Boundaries (John Wiley).

Gerald J. Kauffman, PhD, PE

Gerald J. Kauffman, PhD, PE, is an experienced water resources and watershed management engineer. He is the director of the University of Delaware’s Water Resources Center and was appointed as Delaware’s first water coordinator in 1999. He holds faculty appointments in the University of Delaware’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and School of Public Policy and Administration.
Dr. Kauffman holds a bachelor of science degree in civil and environmental engineering from Rutgers University and a master of public administration degree in watershed policy and a doctorate degree in marine policy, both from the University of Delaware.

Holly Williams Leppo, AIA, NCIDQ-certified, LEED AP

Holly Williams Leppo is an NCARB-certified architect registered, a certified interior designer, and a LEED Accredited Professional. She holds a bachelor of arts degree in integrative arts from The Pennsylvania State University and a master of architecture degree from Washington University in St. Louis.
Ms. Leppo also served a two-year term on the City of Williamsburg Architectural Review Board, and is currently employed with SMB&R, Inc., an architecture, structural engineering, and interior design firm in Pennsylvania.

James Giancaspro, PhD, PE

Dr. James Giancaspro is an Associate Professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Miami in South Florida, and has been on the faculty since 2006. He received Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, and Doctoral degrees in Civil Engineering from Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey.
He collaborated with scientists at the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Fire Safety & Research Division to investigate high temperature resistant materials used in aerospace applications. His industry experience stems from several years in the Structural Damage Technology Division of Boeing, where he developed test methods for composite materials and experimental programs to evaluate their durability and damage tolerance. Currently, his research includes concrete surface measurement and modification, optical strain measurement techniques, and material testing. He has been a member of the editorial board for the ASCE Journal of Materials in Civil Engineering since 2008. He holds two patents and has coauthored more than 15 articles for refereed journal publications, 3 books, and 25 technical reports including the 2012 ASCE Report Card for Florida’s Infrastructure. In 2013, he was the recipient of the James M. Robbins Excellence in Teaching Award from Chi Epsilon for the Southeastern United States.

Jan Van Sickle, PLS

Jan Van Sickle, PLS, is a licensed surveyor in California, Colorado, and Oregon. He has supervised geodetic and GPS control surveys on several continents and has taught surveying courses at the Denver Institute of Technology.

Jeffrey A. Hanson, PE

Jeffrey A. Hanson, PE, has prepared students for the Mechanical PE exam since 2002. He has coordinated and taught PE review courses for the Dallas-Fort Worth ASME and for Fortune 500 companies. He received his bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering from Arizona State University and his master of science degree in engineering management from Southern Methodist University.
He is a licensed professional engineer in Texas and is the global energy manager for Texas Instruments, Inc. Mr. Hanson holds four patents in high purity water use and management and silicon powder reclamation.

John A. Camara, PE

John A Camara, PE in Nuclear and Electrical Engineering, is author of a dozen plus reference and practice problems books, as well as online material, used as study guides for the Electrical and Computer: Computer Engineering/Electronics, Controls, and Communications/Power exams.
Mr. Camara received his bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering and computer engineering/materials science from the University of California at Davis and his master of science degree in space systems from the Florida Institute of Technology.

Jonathan A. Brant, PhD, PE

Jonathan A. Brant, PhD, PE is an assistant professor in the department of civil and architectural engineering at the University of Wyoming. His research focuses on the development and implementation of advanced technologies and techniques for treating drinking water, wastewater, and water for industrial purposes.
Dr. Brant holds a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from the Virginia Military Institute, and a master of science and doctorate degrees in civil engineering from the University of Nevada, Reno.

Joseph S. Schuster, P.E., S.E.

Joseph S. Schuster, P.E., S.E., is a practicing structural engineer licensed in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Illinois. He holds a BS in civil engineering from Cornell University and an MS in structural engineering from Stanford University. Currently, Mr. Schuster works in the Newark office of Thornton Tomasetti, a leading engineering firm.
His work is focused on the forensic investigation of failed structural systems, and the repair and adaptive reuse of buildings. Mr. Schuster is a co-author of AISC Design Guide 15, Rehabilitation and Retrofit Guide, a reference for the evaluation and strengthening of historic steel construction.

Thornton Tomasetti is an engineering firm that optimizes the design and performance of structures, materials and systems for projects of every size and level of complexity. An employee-owned organization of engineers, scientists, architects and other professionals collaborating from offices worldwide, the firm supports clients by drawing on the diverse expertise of its integrated practices. Thornton Tomasetti is committed to being a sustainable and enduring organization and the global driver of innovation in the AEC industry.

Keith E. Elder, PE

Keith Elder, PE, has been a licensed professional engineer in Washington since 1986. He teaches courses in HVAC design, fluid dynamics, hydraulic machines, and PE exam review at the University of Washington, where he is a faculty member and received his bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering in 1981.
His career has included the design and analysis of commercial HVAC systems, the investigation and correction of system performance problems, and participation in the development of local and state energy codes.

Kirsten Sinclair Rosselot, PE

Kirsten Sinclair Rosselot, PE, is the owner of Process Profiles, a consulting firm that specializes in environmental planning and management tools. Ms. Rosselot obtained her bachelor of science degree in chemical engineering from the University of California, Los Angeles, and is a licensed professional engineer in the state of California.

Majid Baradar, PE

Majid Baradar, PE, a civil and earthquake engineering consultant, worked for 18 years at the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans). He is a registered professional civil engineer and an licensed building general contractor. He was recipient of the 1995 Professional Achievement Award from Professional Engineers in California Government for his exemplary contribution to the profession throughout his public and engineering career. Mr. Baradar is also the author of PPI’s California Civil Seismic Principles Solved Problems and Seismic Principles Practice Exams for the California Civil Seismic Exam and the co-author of the California Civil Seismic Building Design, 8th Edition.

Mohammad Iqbal, D.Sc., PE, SE, Esq.

Dr. Mohammad Iqbal graduated from the University of Engineering and Technology in Pakistan; received his M.Sc. (H. Hon.) from the Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey, and D.Sc. from Washington University at St. Louis. Dr. Iqbal also received an MBA in finance from University of Chicago, J.D. from NIU college of law, and LLM from the UIC, College of Law at Chicago. He has had PE and SE licenses in several states and serves on several technical committees.
He is a licensed attorney in Illinois. Dr. Iqbal has coauthored books and published numerous papers on engineering and law. Dr. Iqbal has taught courses internationally on the NCEES examinations. He has co-authored books on the FE and PE model exams.

Nikhil Kar, PhD PE

Nikhil Kar holds PE licenses in Mechanical Engineering and Metallurgical and Materials Engineering, as well as a PhD in Mechanical Engineering. He has independently developed review course material for the Metallurgical and Materials Engineering PE exam, including many problems, and has taught extensively.
He works full time at a family-owned engineering consulting firm, and he also teaches both undergraduate and graduate courses at USC.

Steven E. O’Hara, PE

Steven E. O’Hara, PE, is a professor of architectural engineering in the School of Architecture at Oklahoma State University. Professor O’Hara earned bachelor of science and master of architectural engineering degrees from Oklahoma State University. He is a licensed engineer in Oklahoma.

Yinghui Hu, PhD

Dr. Hu has a PhD in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Southern California and has years of experience in finite element simulation and stress/strain failure analysis. He has been a teaching assistant for several undergraduate and graduate courses at USC, and has also taught review courses for the Mechanical PE Exam.

Ashok V. Naimpally, PhD, PE

Ashok V. Naimpally, PhD, PE, is a professor in the College of Engineering and Computer Science at California State University, Long Beach. A licensed professional engineer in the state of California, Dr. Naimpally's teaching areas include chemical engineering and environmental technology.
He holds a doctorate from Syracuse University and has authored over 40 papers for trade journals and conferences.

C. Dale Buckner, PhD, PE, SECB

C. Dale Buckner is a registered professional civil engineer in Virginia. Dr. Buckner has consulted on engineering projects, and he now teaches in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the Virginia Military Institute. He holds bachelor of science, master of science, and doctorate degrees in civil engineering from North Carolina State University.
He has authored several Structural Engineering and Civil PE exam review books, and he has served as a long-time advisor in PPI's Civil PE Passing Zone.

Elaine Huang, PE

Elaine Huang, PE, is a registered civil engineer in multiple states. Ms. Huang holds a bachelor of science degree in civil and environmental engineering from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and a master of engineering degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
She has designed commercial and industrial structures, and has managed the construction of concrete, steel, masonry, and wood structures. Most recently, Ms. Huang has worked for the defense industry.

Frederick S. Roland, PE, SECB, RA, CFEI, CFII

Frederick S. Roland, PE, SECB, RA, CFEI, CFII, holds professional licenses in both engineering and architecture in a number of states. He has taught courses, including PE exam review, at the University of Delaware and for the School of PE. Mr. Roland earned his bachelor of architecture degree and master of science degree in structural engineering from the University of Illinois.
Formerly vice president of Delaware’s largest architectural-engineering firm, he now works on multibillion-dollar projects for KBR. His wide experience, including with forensic investigations, has led to his providing expert witness testimony in numerous legal cases. He is a contributing author for several books published by PPI and a contributing editor for others. Mr. Roland retired from the U.S. Army and Army Reserve as lieutenant colonel with 28 years of service.

Harriet G. Cooke, PE

Harriet G. Cooke, PE, received her professional engineering license in North Carolina in 1998. She holds three patents and several trade secrets, and has written a series of technical papers. Ms. Cooke received her bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1991.

International Code Council

The International Code Council (ICC) is a membership association dedicated to building safety and fire prevention. ICC develops the codes and standards used to construct residential and commercial buildings, including homes and schools.

Lessa Grunenfelder, PhD

Lessa Grunenfelder, PhD, received her doctorate in Materials Science in 2012 from the University of Southern California. Dr. Grunenfelder is currently a full time faculty at USC, teaching materials science at both the undergraduate and graduate level. She has also taught review courses for the Metallurgy and Materials PE Exam.
Lessa Grunenfelder, PhD, received her doctorate in Materials Science in 2012 from the University of Southern California. Dr. Grunenfelder is currently a full time faculty at USC, teaching materials science at both the undergraduate and graduate level. She has also taught review courses for the Metallurgy and Materials PE Exam.

Marta Vasquez, PhD, PE

Marta Vasquez, PhD, PE, is an environmental chemist with the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality. She holds a BS degree in chemical engineering from Antioquia University in Medellin, Colombia, an MS degree in organic chemistry from Del Valle University in Cali, Colombia, and a doctorate in analytical chemistry from Louisiana State University.
Dr. Vasquez has been working in the field of environmental chemistry since 1989. She is a registered professional engineer in Louisiana.

NCEES

The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing professional licensure for engineers and surveyors. It develops, administers, and scores the examinations used for engineering and surveying licensure in the United States.
It also facilitates professional mobility and promotes uniformity of the U.S. licensure processes through services for its member licensing boards and licensees. These services include the records program, study materials, credentials evaluations, exam administration, and more.

Norman R. Voigt, PE, PLS

Norman R. Voigt, PE, PLS, is registered as both a civil engineer and land surveyor in Pennsylvania. He has been responsible for design, construction, maintenance, and inspection on a variety of highway and transit projects. Since 1974, he has taught or acted as curriculum coordinator for The Pennsylvania State University's Civil PE review course.
He has been an adjunct lecturer at the University of Pittsburgh, and he continues to participate on the senior design project review panel. Mr. Voigt is the author of several Civil PE exam review books, and he has served as a long-time advisor in PPI's Civil PE Passing Zone. He holds bachelor of science and master of science degrees in civil engineering from the University of Pittsburgh.

Peter R. Boniface, PhD, PLS

Peter Boniface, PhD, PLS, is a licensed surveyor in California and an associate professor in the Department of Civil Engineering at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. He teaches a review course for the California Special Civil Engineer Examination and consults on softcopy photogrammetry and GPS surveying projects.
Mr. Boniface obtained a PhD in photogrammetry from London University and an MS in surveying from the University of Natal, South Africa.

R. Wane Schneiter, PhD, PE

R. Wane Schneiter, PhD, PE, is the Deputy Superintendent for Academics and Dean of the Faculty at the Virginia Military Institute (VMI). He joined the VMI faculty in 1990. Prior to his appointment as dean, he served as the head of the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department and held the Benjamin H. Powell Jr. '36 Professorship in Engineering. 
His professional engineering activities have included consulting services on environmental issues to a wide array of public and private clients. He holds bachelor of science and doctorate degrees in civil engineering from Utah State University.

Rima Taher, PhD, PE

Rima Taher, Ph.D, P.E., is a Senior University Lecturer at the Hillier College of Architecture & Design, at NJIT, and is a part-time instructor in the graduate program at the NJIT-Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering. She is a licensed professional engineer in New Jersey and practices as a civil/structural engineer with her own consulting firm “Taher Engineering LLC”.
Dr. Taher has a bachelor of civil engineering from INSA de Lyon, Lyon, France. She has a master’s degree and a doctorate in civil engineering/building technology from École Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées, in Paris, France.

Dr. Taher participated in some building technology research in the field of building design for high winds and hurricanes, and she has several published articles in this field as well as a book, Building Design for Wind Forces. Dr. Taher is currently serving as the President of the ASCE/SEI (Structural Engineering Institute) Chapter of North Jersey.

Robert R. Zinn

Robert R. Zinn holds a BS degree in chemistry from Midwestern University in Wichita Falls, Texas. He has worked in the field of electronic component manufacturing, electronic service, computer repair, instrument repair, and computer programming for 35 years.
He currently provides technical support for faculty and staff at the Louisiana State University Chemistry Department, where he has been a systems manager since 1981.

Thomas Korman, PhD, PE, PLS

Thomas Korman, PhD, PE, PLS, is a registered professional engineer and land surveyor in the state of California and a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers. His extensive practical experience includes the design and construction of civil infrastructure projects with an emphasis on capital improvement projects for roadways, parks, and recreation facilities and water and sewer infrastructure.
He is a professor at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, and the author of several journal articles and conference proceedings related to the design and construction of infrastructure projects.

Dr. Korman holds a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, and master of science and doctorate degrees in civil engineering from Stanford University. He holds several certifications from the American Concrete Institute, and he is a Safety Assessment Program Evaluator and Coordinator for the California Emergency Management Agency.

Transportation Research Board

Transportation Research Board (TRB) is one of six major divisions of the National Research Council.

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