University of Wisconsin–Madison

Member Bios

Chair of the Committee

Ian Robertson,
Dean of the College of Engineering

Voting Members: 

Instructional Area

Joseph Towles

CASI co-coordinator

Lecturer, Department of Biomedical Engineering; Faculty Fellow, Bradley Learning Community; Faculty Advisor, National Society of Black Engineers,; (608) 263-1622

Photo of Joe TowlesJoseph Towles has been a Lecturer (Associate Faculty Associate) in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at UW-Madison for three years. Joe completed his PhD in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Stanford University, and a research post-doctoral fellowship in the Sensory Motor Performance Program at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago and in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Northwestern University. Joe has formal training in course design and active learning techniques through both the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning; and the Teaching Academy at UW-Madison. Joe’s teaching and research interests are in the areas of engineering education, and neuromusculoskeletal mechanics and control. In the College of Engineering, Joe teaches several courses in biomechanics, engineering design, project management and introduction to engineering.

Research Area

Angela Pakes

CASI co-coordinator

Researcher, Civil and environmental Engineering, Geological Engineering Assistant Director for New Technology Directions, Grainger Institute for Engineering,

Photo of Angela Pakes-AhlmanAngela Pakes earned her BS in Geological Engineering with a BS in Geology/Geophysics at UW-Madison in 1996, and her MSE in Civil & Environmental Engineering from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor in 1997. She joined the Grainger Institute for Engineering at UW-Madison in August 2016. Prior to that, Angela led two research centers in the College of Engineering, held a leadership position as the external relations manager for the UW Office of Sustainability, and lead the green building design and development of several major building projects for UW-Madison including Union South, the Wisconsin Energy Institute, Human Ecology and the School of Education Building. Prior to joining the UW, Angela was Senior Engineer for Ford Motor Company Land Development Corporation. At Ford, Angela managed construction and engineering aspects of various Ford Motor Company facility projects worldwide utilizing Lean engineering, Six-sigma and LEED design principles and practices. She also led a revitalized branding and marketing design development for retail facilities worldwide. Prior to working at Ford, Angela was the Midwest Regional Director for ENTRIX where she built a consulting operation from the ground up while becoming a well-established expert in environmental due diligence and large facility and infrastructure decommissioning. Since joining UW-Madison, Angela became an adjunct professor of geological engineering where she has developed and led classes as well as supervised student researchers.
Contact Angela Pakes: (608) 890-4966,

Peter Rafferty

Researcher, Wisconsin Traffic Operations and Safety Lab

Photo of Peter RaffertyPeter Rafferty has been with the Wisconsin Traffic Operations and Safety (TOPS) Lab since 2006, where he manages research and development aspects of connected and automated vehicles, transportation systems management and operations, and intelligent transportation systems. Since the USDOT designated Wisconsin in January 2017 as one of ten official automated vehicle proving grounds, he has been leading the continued development of that program. Peter also has prior experience with the Washington State DOT and several years of consulting experience in Tennessee, Minnesota, and Wisconsin..  He completed a BS and MS, as well as doctoral work, in transportation engineering, planning, and economics.

Contact Peter Rafferty: (608) 890-1218,

All Other Functional Areas

Renee Meiller

Director, Engineering External Relations Office,; 608/262-2481

Renee has worked in Engineering External Relations since 1999. EER is the College of Engineering alumni relations and public relations office and is part of the college’s overall advancement team. As director of EER, Renee oversees communications—print, electronic, web, photography, videography, social media, etc.—targeted to key audiences. She collaborates with college administration, departments and other clients and in-house editorial, design and web staff to craft strategic communications for internal and external audiences that promote college initiatives, successes and excellence and accomplish communications goals. She identifies new strategies for telling the college story through video, multimedia and social media, oversees college media relations, and works with the college development team on efforts to engage alumni and friends with the college. Renee’s personal interests and activities center around fitness and activity, and she has completed six half marathons, many other running races, four sprint triathlons, a quadrathon, and six Paddle and Portage duathlon races. She loves coaching and playing basketball, camping, hiking, biking, travel, cooking and baking, gardening, interior design and home renovation, among many other interests. She is an alumna of UW-Madison.

Pam Peterson

Student Services Coordinator, COE Graduate Student Services Center,

Pam PetersonPam has enjoyed working in Student Services for the College of Engineering for the past 12 years. She began at UW Madison as the Graduate Coordinator for the CEE/ GLE / ECE departments and eventually moved over to the North Student Services Hub office in 2007. Pam currently is the Student Services Coordinator for the COE Graduate Student  Services Center.  Working with and supervising a great staff of Graduate Program Coordinators and student assistants, the Graduate Student Services Center provides support and resource services for graduate programs for over 1,400 graduate students and eleven engineering departments, faculty and staff. Over the past few years, she’s also been involved with a variety of student services support responsibilities including undergraduate advising, course guide management, SOAR programming, ECS events, and assisting the College of Engineering to transition over to online course evaluations and the course waitlist systems for departments. Having worked with many of the COE department programs and staff, she has abundant experience for getting involved and promoting CASI.


Staff Support from the College

Jason Jankoski

Assistant Dean for Human Resources,; 608/890-0921

As assistant dean for human resources, payroll and benefits, Jason Jankoski provides leadership in human resource, payroll and benefits systems administration throughout the College of Engineering. He oversees, directs and collaborates with the college’s decentralized departmental human resource, payroll and administrative staff members, and provides leadership and guidance to achieve excellence in these areas. Additionally, he is the college liaison to human resources at the UW-Madison and UW System levels.

Jankoski joined the College of Engineering as assistant dean in 2014. Previously, he spent five years as assistant dean for human resources in the Wisconsin School of Business, and has held human resources positions elsewhere at UW-Madison and at the State of Wisconsin. He earned his bachelor of arts in human resources management from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.