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2019 SME Member Council

The SME Member Council was created in the fall of 2003 to lead the member engagement activities of SME's volunteer networks. It is responsible for assisting SME in recognizing and meeting the needs of its membership in a rapidly changing environment, building on the long-term SME strategic goals, strengthening local activities and formulating recommendations relative to SME membership recruitment, retention and engagement.

SME members interested in being considered for a seat on the Member Council may apply by submitting an International Director/Member Council Candidate Application (MS WORD). We also encourage you to learn more about the SME Member Council by reading its monthly From the Desk of... e-newsletter.


Edye S. Buchanan, CMfgT
BriskHeat Corp.

Edye S. Buchanan, CMfgT, is a product manager at BriskHeat in Columbus, Ohio. In her previous role as a product manager at Fives North American Combustion Inc., she was responsible for product design engineering, performance improvements and assisting in new product development. Buchanan was also a member of the team winning the company’s 2013 Innovation Award. She is currently the chair of the SME Member Council, served two terms as an SME International Director and is active on several Member Council Task Teams. Buchanan has been the board liaison to SME’s Constitution and Bylaws Committee twice, Member Council and International Awards & Recognition Committee. In 2014, she served as chair of the Organizational Review Task Team and International Officer Nominating Committee. In 1999 and 2000, Buchanan was on the SME Member Committee and was appointed to the first SME Member Council in 2003, serving for seven years including as vice-chair in 2010. She is a former chair of the Chapter Enhancement Committee and the council's Communications Task Force. Buchanan has been active in Lorain County Community College S254 and the former North Coast Chapter 134, serving as a chapter officer in both from 1988-93. Activity in Region 7 culminated as chair in 1999. Currently, she is the webmaster for Columbus Chapter 36 and previously was the program chair for Cleveland Chapter 3. Buchanan holds a bachelor's degree from Kent State University and an associate degree from Lorain County Community College. She received a 2013 STEP Award from The Manufacturing Institute, the SME President's Award in 2003, and Regional Awards of Merit in 2000 and 2002 for her outstanding service. Outside of SME, she serves as both a mentor and referee for the FIRST Lego League. SME Member Since 1987




Brett A. Peters, PhD
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Brett A. Peters, PhD, is a dean and professor in the College of Engineering & Applied Science at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Previously, he was a faculty member of Industrial and Systems Engineering at Texas A&M for 20 years, including department head for nine. Peters’ bachelor’s degree is from the University of Arkansas, and his master’s degree and doctorate are from Georgia Tech. His specialization is facility logistics, particularly layout and material handling system design for manufacturing and warehousing applications. Peters is past editorial board member of “IIE Transactions on Design and Manufacturing” and SME’s “Journal of Manufacturing Systems.” He is fellow of the Institute of Industrial Engineers. Peters served 10 years on the College-Industry Council on Material Handling Education, including a term as president. He was Scholarship Fund Trustee for IIE and for the Material Handling Education Foundation. Peters served two years on SME’s International Awards & Recognition Committee and is currently a member of SME’s Student Relations Committee. SME Member Since 1994


Immediate Past Chair

Jason B. Jones, PhD
Hybrid Manufacturing Technologies

Jason B. Jones, PhD, is the co-founder and CEO of Hybrid Manufacturing Technologies, a 3D printing startup, which is equipping CNC machines with additive manufacturing capabilities. Jones has a doctorate in 3D printing from the University of Warwick and has led millions of dollars of additive manufacturing research during the last decade. He has investigated 3D printing/digital fabrication techniques for multimaterial functional parts and hybrid processing approaches for metals. Jones serves as a task group chair for ASTM where he has led the development of several standards for 3D printing (including ISO 52921). For five years prior to Jone's research appointment, he worked as technical manager in the CNC and 3D printing industry at Unimatic Engineers Ltd. in London. He is the 2015-16 chair of the Additive Manufacturing Community. SME Member Since 2012


Council Representatives

Vesna Cota

Vesna Cota is an additive manufacturing specialist. She spent almost 30 years working in automotive product development with Tyco Electronics Canada ULC, a TE Connectivity Co. Cota currently serves on the board of directors for NSERC-CFI Strategic Network for Holistic Innovation in Additive Manufacturing, the Canadian ISO/TC261 Additive Manufacturing Standards Committee, the SME Member Council and the TCT Expert Advisory Board. She is a longstanding advisor for SME's RAPID + TCT, RAPID Canada conferences, CMTS and FABTECH. Cota also served as an advisor for SME's Additive Manufacturing Community from 2007-16. She has been active in the additive manufacturing community since the early 1990s and is a relentless promoter of additive manufacturing in Canada. As a chapter officer for SME's Toronto Chapter 26, Cota received SME's President’s Award for outstanding service and the SME Award for Organizing and Implementing Rapid Prototyping Seminar Series 1998-99. She was also a founding member and chair of the Engineering Design & Rapid Manufacturing Program Advisory Committee at Centennial College in 1999. Cota developed and delivered additive manufacturing training courses for Magna Inc. Management Training Program from 2000-03 as well as workshops for the Industrial Research Development Institute members’ Product Development program on Rapid Prototyping for Plastics and Rapid Prototyping for Metals. She also served on the 2003-04 Editorial Advisory Board of Design Product News. Cota became an SME master-level Additive Manufacturing Certificate holder in 2005. She received her degree in architecture from the University Of Zagreb, Croatia. SME Member Since 1995


Melissa T. Dochter
Schneider Electric

Melissa T. Dochter is a machine solutions specialist in OEM engineering sales for Schneider Electric. In 2009 and 2010, she served as chair-elect and chair, respectively, for SME’s Penn State student chapter. During her term as chair, membership more than doubled in size as she worked on redefining the chapter’s objectives and strengthening involvement. Dochter was also a member of the 2011-12 International Director/Member Council Nominating Committee. She is currently serving on the 2015-16 SME Member Council and various task teams. Dochter earned her bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from Penn State University in 2010. SME Member Since 2009


John Kovalchuck, LSME, CMfgE
Macomb Community College

John Kovalchuck, LSME, CMfgE, is a CNC instructor in engineering and advanced technology at Macomb Community College. Kovalchuck has held two terms as SME international director, two terms as SME Certification chair and served as the SME International Strategies Committee chair. He was chair of the former Greater Detroit Chapter 235 and a two-term CASA/SME Lead Award Committee member. While at Ford, Kovalchuck was the superintendent of the Dearborn tool and die plant and an NC CAD/CAM systems manager. At GM/EDS, he was an applications engineer in the NC and CAD/CAM system engineering department. Kovalchuck instructed CNC at Western Illinois University and Bowling Green State University. He has a master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Stout and holds 10 NIMS level-one certifications. Kovalchuck was awarded Teacher of the Year by the Air Force twice and Master Teacher by the Michigan Industrial Teachers Education Society. SME Member Since 1980


Lonnie J. Love, PhD, FSME
Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Lonnie Love, PhD, FSME, is a corporate fellow and group leader of Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Manufacturing Systems Research Group. He received his doctorate in mechanical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1995. Love has over 20 years of experience in the design and control of complex robotic and hydraulic systems. He is the project lead for the Big Area Additive Manufacturing (BAAM) program at ORNL that is focusing on large-scale, high-speed composite additive manufacturing that is now being commercialized by Cincinnati Inc. His team has demonstrated the technology on a number of high-profile projects, including the first 3D-printed car (the Strati with Local Motors), the printed Cobra for the Department of Energy as well as high-speed, low-cost tooling for Boeing and Ford. Love was ORNL’s 2014 Distinguished Research Scientist, 2009 Inventor of the Year, has over 30 invention disclosures and patents and 125 peer-reviewed publications. He serves on the scientific advisory board for NSF’s Center for Compact and Efficient Fluid Power. SME Member Since 2014


Kyle M. Riegel
Schunk Carbon Technology

Kyle Riegel is the recipient of the 2008 SME Education Foundation Family Scholarship and went on to graduate from Loras College with degrees in electromechanical engineering and applied mathematics. He is currently a field sales engineer for Schunk Carbon Technology, focusing on the wind industry. Previously, Riegel was a research and development engineer at United Equipment Accessories where he designed and manufactured a wide variety of products, including airport tug electrical shift controls, proprietary contact materials for slip rings in megawatt wind turbines and explosion-proof enclosures. While working full-time, Riegel earned his MBA from St. Ambrose University. In 2015, he was one of DiscoverE’s New Faces of Engineering Award winners as well as a recipient of SME’s 30 Under 30 recognition. Riegel currently sits as an active board member for the University of Northern Iowa’s Manufacturing Engineering Advisory Council, Cedar Falls Prime School Board and Loras College’s Engineering Board. He has mentored over 11 senior industrial engineering capstone groups at Iowa State University. SME Member Since 2008


William R. “Will” Sniadack
Metso Flow Control USA

William R. "Will" Sniadack is a welding engineer on the manufacturing engineering team for Metso Flow Control USA. As a member of SME's Worcester Chapter 25, Sniadack has served as golf day manager, chair-elect and chair. During his time as golf day manager, Sniadack organized three successful annual golf fundraisers that helped provide much-needed scholarship money to local college students. Serving as chair, his focus was on technical programs such as touring local businesses and factories and getting involvement from other chapters and organizations. Sniadack is also a member of the American Welding Society. He earned his bachelor’s degree in welding and fabrication engineering technology from Pennsylvania College of Technology in 2014. SME Member Since 2015


Brock T. Strunk
Epic Aircraft

Brock T. Strunk is currently chief structures engineer at Epic Aircraft LLC working on the E1000 all composite aircraft FAA certification. Since joining SME as a student member at the Oregon Institute of Technology, Strunk has held multiple leadership roles on both the international and chapter levels, including co-chair of Technical Community Network; chair and vice-chair of the Member Council, vice-chair of the Plastics, Composites & Coatings Community; co-chair of the Finishing Processes Tech Group; an advisor for the Composites Manufacturing Tech Group; vice-chair and treasurer of Denver Chapter 77; and vice-chair of the Oregon Institute of Technology S036 student chapter. In 2008, he was awarded SME's Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer Award. Strunk has presented at multiple SME conferences in the area of composite repair and manufacturing. He has worked on numerous composite aircraft structures during his tenure in the aerospace community. Previously, Strunk worked as a senior structures engineer at Erickson Air-Crane Helicopter Inc., a level 3 stress engineer at Spirit AeroSystems, an engineering manager at Adam Aircraft and a senior structures engineer at Columbia Aircraft. He earned a bachelor’s degree in manufacturing engineering and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Oregon Institute of Technology. SME Member Since 1999


Phillip S. "Phil" Waldrop, PhD, LSME
Georgia Southern University (retired)

Phillip S. "Phil" Waldrop, PhD, LSME, is a 2010 SME Award of Merit recipient and a graduate of Ball State and Purdue universities. He retired from Georgia Southern University in 2011, having taught hands-on materials/processes and technical management courses. Waldrop continues to teach online graduate engineering management courses, including lean manufacturing, and serves as an advisor to the new manufacturing engineering degree program. Before college teaching, he taught high school machine shop. Waldrop’s industry experience ranges from turret lathe operator and CNC programmer to aerospace manufacturing R&D, management of B-2 aircraft program factory modernization projects and a strategic supplier development program in Spain. As an ATMAE-certified senior technology manager, he served as president of ATMAE’s Industry and Management divisions and served on the SPE Composites Division Board of Directors. For SME, Waldrop has served as chapter chair, student chapter advisor, Technical Community advisor and Nominating Committee member. He is currently an SME membership consultant and a member of SME’s Student Relations Committee. SME Member Since 1976