WTS Foundation Board of Directors

WTS Foundation 2022-2024 Board of Directors

  • Yvonne Lopez-Diaz

    Yvonne Lopez-Diaz


    Vice President, National Workforce Strategist, HNTB

    Yvonne Lopez-Diaz

    Yvonne Lopez-Diaz is a vice president at HNTB Corporation, an employee-owned infrastructure solutions firm serving public and private owners and contractors. With HNTB for 24 years, she currently serves as the firm’s National Workforce Strategist.  During her time at HNTB, Yvonne has held various roles within the company, including Director of Human Resources, where she was responsible for managing all aspects of HR strategy and operations. As the National Workforce Strategist, Yvonne plays a crucial role in shaping and implementing workforce requirements on major projects and pursuits. She collaborates with leadership to identify the skills and expertise needed for successful project execution, and works to develop strategies for attracting and retaining top talent. Her background in pharmaceuticals products at Bayer Corporation has provided her with a strong foundation in managing HR functions in a complex and highly regulated industry. In addition to her work at HNTB, Yvonne has been involved in various professional organizations, including the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and the National Association of Professional Women (NAPW). She is committed to staying current on industry trends and best practices, and regularly attends conferences and workshops to further her professional development.

    Yvonne’s educational background and involvement in the community further demonstrate her dedication and expertise in her field. Her Bachelor's degree in Human Resource Management from the University of Phoenix provides her with a solid foundation in the principles and practices of HR. In addition, Yvonne's certification as an Executive Coach showcases her commitment to professional development and her ability to provide guidance and support to individuals in leadership roles. Her completion of the WTS Executive Leadership Program and the Advanced Strategy certificate program from the Chicago Booth Executive Education program further highlight her desire to enhance her strategic thinking and leadership skills. Her involvement in community and industry organizations speaks to her commitment to giving back and making a positive impact. Her service on the boards of the Seminole County Chamber of Commerce, Central Florida Zoological Society, Central Florida Community Foundation, and the Walt Disney World Dreamers & Doers Organization demonstrates her dedication to supporting local businesses, conservation efforts, philanthropy, and youth development. Furthermore, her volunteer work with organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, the Ronald McDonald House, Children's Home Society, and various community clean-up programs emphasizes her commitment to making a difference in the lives of others and improving the communities she serves. Yvonne's expertise and involvement in the engineering industry have also led to her being recognized as an expert panelist on various workforce development and planning topics. Her insights and knowledge are highly sought after by industry organizations and public agencies, further solidifying her reputation as a thought leader in her field.

    Yvonne's extensive involvement with the Women's Transportation Seminar (WTS) showcases her commitment to advancing women in the transportation industry. Serving as the Vice Chair of the WTS Foundation Board, she plays a crucial role in supporting the organization's mission and initiatives.  On the WTS Foundation, Yvonne chairs the Educational Programming Committee, which focuses on developing programs and resources to enhance the educational opportunities for women in transportation. Her involvement in this committee reflects her dedication to promoting learning and professional development within the industry. In addition, She is a member of several other committees within WTS International, including the Diversity, Inclusion and Equity Committee, the Finance Committee, the Governance Committee, and the Audit Committee. Her participation in these committees highlights her commitment to fostering diversity and inclusion within the transportation industry, as well as her expertise in financial and governance matters. Yvonne's long-standing involvement with the WTS Central Florida Scholarship Committee for over a decade showcases her commitment to supporting the educational pursuits of aspiring professionals in the transportation field. Her leadership in this committee contributed to the success and impact of the scholarship program in Central Florida. Furthermore, her role as Chair of the WTS Greater NY Chapter Glass Ceiling Committee demonstrates her dedication to addressing gender disparities and barriers to women's advancement in transportation leadership roles. Under her leadership, the committee conducted a study to benchmark the leadership roles of women in the metropolitan New York and New Jersey regions, with a specific focus on whether the glass ceiling acts as a barrier to their growth and success. This research and development effort highlights Yvonne's commitment to driving change and pushing for greater gender equality in the industry. Her involvement on the board of COMTO Central Florida further underscores her dedication to promoting diversity and equal opportunities in the transportation industry. COMTO aims to ensure that individuals from all backgrounds have the chance to advance and contribute to the field, with a focus on diverse representation at all levels.

    Yvonne's achievements and recognition highlight her exceptional leadership and impact in the transportation industry. Being featured in the "Hispanic Executive" Magazine showcases Yvonne's prominence as a Latino leader on the global stage. This recognition not only highlights her accomplishments but also serves as an inspiration for other aspiring Latino professionals in the transportation field. Yvonne's commitment to nurturing young professionals within HNTB and preparing them for future leadership opportunities is commendable. By prioritizing the growth and development of young talent, she demonstrates her dedication to building a strong pipeline of future leaders within the firm. Being named one of the "Top 10 Women to Watch in Transportation" by the ENO Center for Transportation further acknowledges Yvonne's innovative ideas and positive impact on the transportation industry. This recognition indicates her ability to contribute fresh perspectives, drive change, and make a difference in the field. Receiving the Rosa Parks Diversity Leadership award from the WTS Greater New York and Inland Empire Chapters is a testament to Yvonne's efforts in promoting diversity and supporting the advancement of underrepresented groups across the country. Her commitment to developing opportunities, promoting career advancement, and mentoring emerging leaders showcases her dedication to creating a more inclusive and equitable industry.

    Being nominated by her peers for HNTB's "Living the Vision" award is a significant recognition within the firm. This nomination reflects Yvonne's embodiment of the company's values, philosophy, and culture in her daily work. It demonstrates her commitment to upholding HNTB's vision and making a meaningful impact within the organization. Overall, Yvonne's accomplishments and recognition highlight her exceptional leadership, commitment to diversity and inclusion, and positive impact within the transportation industry. Her dedication to advancing women, nurturing young professionals, and promoting diversity in the workplace makes her an influential and respected leader in her field.

  • Odessa Phillip

    Odessa Phillip

    Vice Chair

    President and CEO, Assedo Consulting, LLC

    Odessa Phillip

    Odessa L. Phillip, PE, President and CEO of Assedo Consulting, is a structural engineer, transportation planner, and public engagement professional with over 20 years of experience working with local, state, and federal public and private organizations. She has provided design, engineering, environmental management and public outreach and education services to clients in the on a wide range of infrastructure projects. Her work guides and educates stakeholders, appointed and elected government officials, and communities on the impacts of engineering, transportation, and construction projects.

    Odessa secured a BSCE from Howard University (Structures/Transportation) and a Master of Engineering degree from the University of Maryland, College Park (Construction Project Management). 

    In 2012, Ms. Phillip founded Assedo Consulting, LLC, a certified African-American, woman-owned business enterprise (MBE/WBE). Assedo Consulting provides planning and public outreach services for projects in the planning, design, and construction phases of development. A longtime supporter of her alma mater, Howard University, Ms. Phillip has worked as an adjunct professor in the Civil Engineering Department and sits on the Advisory Board for the Department. Her goal is to work diligently to introduce more women and minorities to the engineering field.

  • Karen Good

    Karen Good

    Immediate Past Chair

    Specialty Services Supervisor, City & County of Denver

  • kelly Kaysonepheth

    Kelly Kaysonepheth


    Marketing Director and Associate Vice President, AZTEC Engineering Group, Inc.

    Kelly Kaysonepheth

    Kelly Kaysonepheth is the Marketing Director and Associate Vice President at AZTEC Engineering Group, Inc., a subsidiary of TYPSA Group. She brings 15 years of experience leading marketing and proposal pursuits through client outreach and creative capture planning and has secured more than $350M in design work for the transportation industry to date.

    A dedicated community volunteer, Kelly has served on the boards for several nonprofit organizations, including chapter president of WTS Metropolitan Phoenix (2018/19). The core of her community service has been concentrated on advancing women’s leadership development opportunities, STEM programming and mentoring first-generation and low-income students to reach their fullest potential. Kelly is recognized within the industry and the community. She has been nominated for the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce’s ATHENA Award, recognized as 40 Under 40 by the Phoenix Business-Journal and named to Engineering News-Record in its 2019 Top 20 Under 40 Outstanding Young Professionals in the Southwest Region.

    Kelly is a graduate of Seton Hall University in South Orange, NJ, where she graduated magna cum laude with a B.A. degree in English.

  • Danielle Smith

    Danielle Smith


    Central Region Director, Triunity, A Lochner Company

    Danielle Smith

    Danielle Smith, PE is the West Region Director for Triunity, Inc. She has seasoned professional experience in public transportation project delivery, encompassing project and program management and the design of highway, light rail and traffic-related projects. Danielle was intimately involved in the nationally recognized RTD multi-modal project T-REX and the RTD FasTracks projects. Her experience includes program management, stakeholder coordination, highway and light rail design, utility coordination, project controls, cost estimating, and project coordination.

    Danielle is a competent and skilled leader that will enhance any project or team at a company. She has great communication skills and the ability to lead teams to implement projects and bring them to completion with high satisfaction. She also has been the Discipline leads of office departments where she manages the day-to-day activities and staff utilization on projects.

  • Jennifer D

    Jennifer Duval


    Vice President, Rail & Transit Leader, Jacobs

    Jennifer Duval

    Jen Duval has spent the last two decades as a transportation leader at Jacobs, working with clients and teams to advance the field and adapt to change. She currently serves as the Americas East Region Transportation Solutions Leader as well as the Department Leader for Rail & Transit in the East Central geography. In these roles, she’s responsible for talent development, market growth, technical excellence, and innovation. Prior to Jacobs, Jen was a City Planner with the City of San Diego.

    Jen holds a Bachelor’s degree in Geography from Mary Washington College and a Masters of City of Planning from San Diego State University. Jen has been involved with WTS throughout her career, having served in various roles on the WTSF Board and with the Philadelphia Chapter. 

  • Emmanuelle Myrthil

    Emmanuella Myrthil


    Chief Equity & Inclusion Officer, SEPTA

    Emmanuella Myrthil

    Emmanuella is the Chief Equity & Inclusion Officer · Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA), and the former Diversity Division Director for HNTB's Southeast Division. In this role, she worked to engage, empower and elevate historically underutilized businesses seeking to do business with local and state government partners.

    She utilizes creative and engaging strategies to impact inclusion of minority businesses and diversify small business participation in transportation projects throughout the Southeast. She creates connections with clients and stakeholders across cultural differences to address community and business needs.

    Emmanuella began her transportation career more than 15 years ago with Georgia Department of Transportation where she worked as a Public Relations/Communications Specialist, a NEPA specialist and a Program Manager at the Transportation Management Center.  

    Today Emmanuella works to change business as usual practices to remove barriers and expand access for minority businesses. She leverages both internal and external resources to ensure creative business solutions that achieve multiple advantages for all involved.

    She is the Chair of ACEC Georgia’s Inclusion & Diversity Task Force and has facilitated dynamic learning experiences for ACEC GA's Future Leaders' Program.

    Emmanuella holds a degree in Journalism from the State University of New York at New Paltz and is a two-time author and workshop creator of Journey of the Journal.

  • Christine Skinner

    Christine Skinner


    Christine Skinner

    Christi Skinner served as Senior Vice President and the Transportation Client Development Director for HDR, an ENR Top 5 design firm specializing in engineering, architecture, environmental and construction services.

    Based out of Bellevue, WA, she has 30 years of experience in the A/E/C industry in all phases of project work, from project identification and pursuit through execution. Christi helps set the vision for the transportation practice, creates and applies programs and processes across all geographies and provides tactical leadership of the team of individuals focused on securing the firm’s most complex, game-changing projects across all modes of transportation.

    Christi is a long-time member of WTS and this is her second term on the WTS Foundation board where she serves as the WTSF Treasurer.

  • Avital Barnea

    Avital Barnea


    Senior Executive Officer, Multimodal Integrated Planning, Los Angeles Metro

    Avital Barnea

    Avital Barnea is Senior Executive Officer for Multimodal Integrated Planning at the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LA Metro). She leads a staff of 50 transportation professionals in complete streets & highways, active transportation, regional rail, goods movement, long-range planning, transportation demand management, and parking. Her previous experience includes roles at the federal, state, and local levels, including the governor-appointed position of Deputy Secretary for Transportation Planning at the California State Transportation Agency. Avital received a Master of Urban and Regional Planning degree and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Geography, both from the University of Minnesota. She is an active WTS member, currently serving on the WTS Foundation Board of Directors and previously serving as President of the WTS Washington, DC Chapter.

  • Patricia M

    Patricia Macchi


    National Director of Infrastructure Economics and Grants Advisory, Senior Principal, STV

    Patricia Macchi

    Patricia is a vice president at STV. She serves as the national director of infrastructure economics and grants advisory, bringing with her over two decades of experience providing financial leadership for architecture, engineering, and consulting firms, as well as international organizations, including the World Bank. Patricia has demonstrated expertise in furnishing benefit-cost analysis (BCA), economic impact assessments, and economics and financial modeling for complex multimodal infrastructure efforts. She spearheaded the development of a user-friendly dashboard at STV, providing clients with a streamlined grants discovery process to maximize project planning and funding capabilities. Her guidance is highly valued by clients in forming funding strategies for zero-emission vehicle transitions and sustainability.

    Patricia is an exemplar for education, scholarships, and career opportunities in transportation. Drawing from her journey, she aims to inspire women from diverse backgrounds to pursue careers in transportation. In 2022, she founded the STV Women's Network employee resource group (ERG) and has since continued to lead it. As Chair, she ensures women have resources and support for professional growth and communicates progress to company leadership, fostering an inclusive culture aligned with organizational goals.

    She has authored several published papers, articles, and books about transportation economics and funding. Patricia holds a BS in Economics from Universidad Torcuato Di Tella in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and a MA in Economics from Boston University. She is an active member of the WTS-DC chapter, a member of the WTSI Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity Committee, and currently serves on the WTS Foundation Board of Directors.

    At present, she and her husband proudly raise a teenage daughter and twin preteen boys in Northern Virginia.

  • Melissa M

    Melissa Mullinax


    Chief of Staff and Chief Administrative Officer, MARTA

  • Mandy

    Mandy Putney


    Urban Mobility Office Strategic Initiatives Director, Oregon Department of Transportation

    Mandy Putney

    Mandy Putney is the Strategic Initiatives Director at the Oregon Department of Transportation’s Urban Mobility Office. With more than 20 years of experience working at the intersection of policy, community, and environmental change, Mandy strives to develop and deliver transportation projects and initiatives that reflect community needs and produce equitable and measurable outcomes.

    Currently, Mandy is responsible for managing transportation policy, project development, investment prioritization and extensive stakeholder communication and coordination. She successfully brought the agency’s largest contract ever to bid, including requirements for hiring DBE firms, Tribal members, and residents of economically distressed zip codes. Mandy develops, implements, and communicates complex work plans for “mega-projects” as they are evaluated, designed, and permitted in a highly politicized environment.

    Mandy has a M.A. degree from the Antioch University Seattle Environment and Community Program, certifications from the International Association of Public Participation, and the Oregon Project Management Certification Program. She has served on the WTS Puget Sound and Portland chapter boards and is an active Mentor with the Portland chapter. She was recognized as the 2019 WTS Portland Woman of the Year and as a 2021 Daily Journal of Commerce Woman of Vision.

    Mandy lives in Portland, Oregon, with her partner, Heather, and “tween” Sequoia.

  • Adrienne W

    Adrienne Williams


    Director, Diversity and Community Outreach- Southern Region, McCarthy Building Companies