ISA announces recipients of 2016 author awards

  • October 04, 2016
  • Research Triangle Park, North Carolina

The International Society of Automation (ISA) today announces the recipients of its 2016 author awards presented annually by ISA's Publications Department.

"Each year, ISA is proud to recognize and thank all of the talented authors and contributors who help develop, review and deliver outstanding ISA publications and technical resources to automation and control professionals throughout the world," says Susan Colwell, director of ISA's Publications Department and Publisher of ISA's InTech magazine.

Winners are recognized for their editorial contributions to a wide range of ISA publications, including ISA books; InTech, ISA's bi-monthly magazine for automation and control professionals; and ISA Transactions, ISA's bi-monthly professional journal  dedicated to the science and engineering of measurement and automation.

Winners were honored at a 26 September awards ceremony held during ISA's 2016 Fall Leaders Meeting in Newport Beach, California.

Awards and award recipients

The Keith Otto Award

The Keith Otto Award recognizes the author or authors of the best article in InTech magazine. The award was presented to Donald G. Dunn and Nicholas Sands for their article, "Automation IT-Diagnosing your alarm system,"which appeared in the July/August 2015 issue of InTech.

Donald G. Dunn is Director of Division Engineering at Phillips 66. He is currently a senior member of the IEEE and ISA. He is a member of the IEEE, ISA, NFPA, API and IEC standards working groups. He co-chairs ISA18, chairs IEEE841 and is the convener of IEC62682.

Dunn served as: the IEEE Houston Section Chairman in 2001, 2002, 2006, and 2011-2012; Vice President of the ISA Standards and Practices Board from 2011 to 2012; Chairman of the IEEE IAS Petroleum and Chemical Industry Committee (PCIC) from 2012 to 2014; and Chairman of the API Subcommittee on Electrical Equipment from 2012 to 2015. In 2015, he was elected to serve a three-year term on the ISA Board of Directors and is the current Chairman of the PCIC A&A Subcommittee.

Nicholas Sands, PE, CAP®,  is the Global Alarm Management Leader at DuPont and a Manufacturing Technology Fellow focused on DuPont's Kevlar®, Nomex®, and Tyvek® product offerings.

In his 26 years at DuPont, Sands has served as a business process control leader, site process control leader, process control consultant, and plant control engineer. He has worked on or led the development of several corporate standards and best practices in the areas of automation competency, safety instrumented systems, alarm management, and process safety. 

Sands is an ISA Fellow and current Vice President of ISA Standards and Practices. He is a former Vice President of ISA Professional Development and contributed to the development of ISA's Certified Automation Professional® (CAP®) program. He serves as Co-Chair of the ISA18 committee on alarm management, a member of the ISA101 committee on HMI, a Director of the ISA84 committee on safety instrumented systems, and Secretary of the IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) committee that published the alarm management standard, IEC62682. He has written numerous articles and papers on alarm management, safety instrumented systems, and professional development.

Sands earned a bachelor of science degree in chemical engineering at Virginia Tech.

The Nels Tyring Award 

The Nels Tyring Award recognizes the author or authors of the best published article in one of the Society's journals. Moazzam Shamsi is this year's recipient for his article, "System Integration: Wired versus wireless trade-offs," which appeared in the January/ February 2015 issue of InTech.

Shamsi, MSc, BEng, CEng, MinstMC, serves as Director of Global Wireless Solutions Architects at Emerson Process Management.

In his position, Shamsi directs the global wireless solutions architects who serve around the world as Emerson's wireless Technical Authority and Execution consultants. He is an expert in developing facility-wide wireless visions and implementing wireless field and plant network solutions. He has extensive experience in helping contractors and customers adopt wireless technology into their business practices, and into functional requirements to set the scope of Requests for Quotation (RFQs).  

The Raymond D. Molloy Award 

The Raymond D. Molloy Award is presented annually in honor of Raymond D. Molloy's contributions to the automation profession. Molloy was dedicated to the ISA publications program for more than 20 years, maintaining a keen interest in developing high-quality publications that met the needs of measurement and control professionals. This year's award recipients are Paul Gruhn, PE, CFSE  and Harry L. Cheddie, PE, CFSE, whose book, Safety Instrumented Systems: Design, Analysis, and Justification, Second Edition, outsold all other ISA books published in 2015.

Paul Gruhn, Global Functional Safety Consultant at aeSolutions, is a highly acclaimed and awarded safety expert in the automation and control field, with more than four decades of experience. He is an ISA Fellow, the Co-Chair of the ISA 84 standard committee (on safety instrumented systems), and a developer and instructor of ISA courses on safety systems.

An accomplished author, he wrote another ISA book, Sell More through Effective Technical Presentations, as well as book chapters and more than two dozen published articles.

Gruhn developed the first commercial safety system modeling software. He is a Licensed Professional Engineer (PE) in Texas, a member of Control System Engineer (CSE) exam team, a certified functional safety expert (CFSE) and an ISA84 expert. He received a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering from Illinois Institute of Technology.

Harry L. Cheddie serves as Director of Engineering at Cteris Consulting, located in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada. In this position, he is responsible for completing HAZOP and other safety studies for end users, teaching safety courses, and implementing Reliability, Availability & Maintainability (RAM) studies for process industries.

Cheddie possesses more than 40 years of experience in the design, installation and maintenance of process control and Safety Instrumented Systems (SIS) for the mining, petroleum and petrochemical industries.

During his career, Cheddie has worked at Imperial Oil (Exxon), Sarnia Refinery as the Operations Support Supervisor and I&E Design Supervisor, and at Bayer in Sarnia as I&E Design and Maintenance Supervisor. As a consultant, he has implemented safety training, and  safety and reliability studies for companies throughout the world.

Cheddie is a registered Professional Engineer in the Provinces of Alberta and Ontario, Canada, and has been certified by the American Society for Quality as a Quality Engineer and Reliability Engineer.

He is the co-author of two textbooks relating to the design of SIS. He earned a bachelor of science degree (1st Class Honors) in electrical engineering from Salford University in the United Kingdom. 

ISA Transactions Best Paper Award  

ISA Transactions Best Paper Award recognizes the best technical paper published in ISA Transactions, the ISA professional journal dedicated to the science and engineering of measurement and automation, during the previous year.

By showcasing advances that bridge the theory and practice gap, ISA Transactions plays an important role in enhancing the visibility and reputation of automation and control professionals.

The recipients of the ISA Transactions Best Paper Award are Lotfi Saidi, Jaouher Ben Ali, and Farhat Fnaiech. The review committee recognized their paper, "Application of higher order spectral features and support vector machines for bearing faults classification," which was published in ISA Transactions, Vol. 54, (pages 193-206), January 2015.

ISA members have free online access to ISA Transactions. Non-ISA members can learn more about the journal by clicking here.

Lotfi Saidi, Ph.D., a native of Tunisia, received: a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering from the University of Tunis in 2005; and a master of science degree in automatic control and production engineering in 2007 and a doctorate degree in electrical engineering in 2014, both from the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des ingénieures de Tunis (ESSTT).

He is a member of the research group in Signal Image and Energy Mastery laboratory (SIME) at the University of Tunis, and served as an associate professor at the University of Sousse. His research interests include health monitoring schemes for electro-mechanical systems, based on advanced digital signal processing tools and pattern-recognition techniques.

Jaouher Ben Ali, also born in Tunisia, received: a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering in 2008 and a master of science degree in automatic control and production engineering in 2011, both from the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des ingénieures de Tunis (ESSTT). He is currently working toward a doctorate degree in electrical engineering at the University of Tunis.

He is a member of the research group in Signal Image and Energy Mastery laboratory (SIME) at the University of Tunis, and served as an associate professor at the University of Sousse.

His research interests include the application of artificial intelligence and signal processing tools for the diagnosis of electrical machines and drives.

Farhat Fnaiech, Ph.D., also a Tunisian native, received: a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering in 1978 from the ENSET High School of Sciences and Techniques in Tunis; a master's degree in 1980; a doctorate 3 cycle degree in electrical engineering in 1983; and a doctorate in sciences degree in physics in 1999 from Faculté des Sciences of Tunis.

Currently a professor at the Ecole Superieure des Sciences and Techniques inTunis. Dr. Fnaiech has published more than 250 research papers. He has organized many national and international conferences and has served as the general chairman and member of numerous international board committees and international conferences.

He serves as the associate editor of IEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics and was appointed as an AdCom member in the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society.

Dr. Fnaiech also directs the research laboratory (involving approximately 100 researchers) in Signal Image and Energy Mastery (SIME) at the University of Tunis. His main research interests focus on nonlinear adaptive signal processing, nonlinear control of power electronic.

About ISA

The International Society of Automation ( is a nonprofit professional association that sets the standard for those who apply engineering and technology to improve the management, safety, and cybersecurity of modern automation and control systems used across industry and critical infrastructure. Founded in 1945, ISA develops widely used global standards; certifies industry professionals; provides education and training; publishes books and technical articles; hosts conferences and exhibits; and provides networking and career development programs for its 40,000 members and 400,000 customers around the world.

ISA owns, a leading online publisher of automation-related content, and is the founding sponsor of The Automation Federation (, an association of non-profit organizations serving as "The Voice of Automation." Through a wholly owned subsidiary, ISA bridges the gap between standards and their implementation with the ISA Security Compliance Institute ( and the ISA Wireless Compliance Institute (