The three international ITS organizations, together representing the entire world, yesterday (October 30) handed out one lifetime achievement award each, at the opening of the ITS World Congress in Montreal.
The awards were presented by Jacob Bangsgaard, CEO or ERTICO – ITS Europe, Hajime Amano, CEO of ITS Japan, and Shailen Bhatt, the new CEO of ITS America.
The ITS Europe award went to Christer Karlsson, CEO of ITS Sweden. “Christer has been a thought leader in the ITS field for more than 25 years,” said Bangsgaard. “He has been one of the leading participants in the European ITS association, where he was the first chairman and he is still very active in this field. He has a strong commitment to the ITS congresses, where he was one of the leading lights in organizing the ITS World Congress 2009 in Stockholm, and he has been very active on the International Program Committee and on the Board of Directors.”
Karlsson (above) thanked the global ITS organizations for creating a stable platform upon which events of this type can be built. “I’m very honoured to get this award, especially when I know who has received one before me,” he said. “The key word now is ‘cooperation’ and the world congresses are one of the best places to do and establish that. So I hope to see you at this World Congress but also the coming congresses in Copenhagen, Singapore and Los Angeles.”
The ITS Asia-Pacific award went to Datuk Ir. Hj, Ismail Bin Md Salleh, director general of the Malaysian Highway Authority. Presenting the award Amano (below) highlighted Bin Md Salleh’s 36 years of experience in transportations, presiding over his local ITS association, taking key roles in ITS Asia-Pacific and spearheading freeflow tolling systems.
“This is a great pleasure and honour and I would like to express my deepest appreciation for this award,” said Bin Md Sallah. “This award indicates our willingness and readiness to embrace changes, moving forward and adapting to future technologies. Thank you all.”
“I always say the department of transportation exists for two reasons, to save lives and to make people’s lives better,” said Bhatt, presenting the Lifetime Achievement Award for ITS America. “This year’s winner has dedicated his career to those very things and I can think of no one more deserving. Mr Michael Doyle has been the chairman and CEO of Econolite Group since acquiring the company in 1978. Under his leadership Econolite expanded to serve many aspects of the transportation market.
“Mike is a past chair of our own ITS America and spent many years serving on the ITS America Board of Directors and the Leadership Circle. In 2013 he was inducted into the ITS America Hall of Fame. Mike, we extend our gratitude to you for your commitment to the industry in this well-deserved award.”
“I was surprised to learn about this award,” said Doyle in his acceptance speech (above). “I don’t think of myself in those kind of terms. I am humbled and grateful to be in front of you. I’m humbled that you would recognize my career, when in truth I’m just having fun. I’m grateful because this venue and the ones like it in the past have provided this amazing collaboration of folks from the public, private and academic sectors. You can find this nowhere else in the world, to my knowledge This is a lifetime achievement award, but I have to tell you I’m not done yet.”