UC Berkeley Safe Transportation Research and Education Center (SafeTREC) welcomes new Director, Dr. Julia Griswold, to the helm after a nationwide search this fall.
SafeTREC is a partner Center between Berkeley Institute of Transportation Studies (ITS Berkeley) and Berkeley Public Health (BPH) focusing on transportation, bicycle, and pedestrian safety.
“After a thorough search with many excellent candidates, we are excited to recognize the leadership and skills Julia has brought to SafeTREC over so many years,” says ITS Director Daniel Rodriguez. “I look forward to her continued leadership and working with Julia in this new capacity.”
Griswold most recently served as Acting Co-Director and Safety Research Lead at SafeTREC and brings a wealth of transportation safety expertise to the position. She has led projects in collaboration with partners at the federal, state, and local level, and mentored numerous graduate students from a wide range of backgrounds including transportation engineering, urban planning, and public health. Her current research focuses on implementation of the Safe System framework in the U.S., analysis of crash data and trends to identify causes & potential solutions to achieve pedestrian and bicyclist safety challenges, development of a context-sensitive approach to setting speed limits, and development of network screening approaches to identify roadway locations needing safety improvements.
"We are thrilled that Dr. Griswold will be leading the important work that SafeTREC is doing to prevent injuries from traffic crashes through research, training, public service, and policy," says Dr. Michael C. Lu, dean of the UC Berkeley School of Public Health.
Griswold is also the Associate Director of the Center for Pedestrian and Bicyclist Safety (CPBS)(link is external), a Tier-1 University Transportation Center (UTC) supported by the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) and led by the University of New Mexico (UNM).
“I'm excited to continue working with my amazing SafeTREC colleagues to expand our interdisciplinary focus on research and programs that address the most urgent transportation safety needs in California and nationwide,” says Griswold. “My goal as Director is to strengthen and broaden our innovative and impactful work to improve roadway safety for all, especially for those most vulnerable.”
Griswold earned her PhD and an M.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from UC Berkeley, an M.A. in Geography from San Francisco State University, and her B.A. in Linguistics from Pomona College. She began working at SafeTREC as a graduate student researcher in 2009, continued as a postdoctoral scholar after completing her PhD in 2013, and has served in various research positions since 2017.
In addition, SangHyouk Oum will take on a new leadership role as Associate Director. Oum most recently served as Acting Co-Director and Safety Data and Tools Lead. He has worked at SafeTREC for over 12 years as an Applications Program Manager and Applications Programmer, in addition to working as a graduate student researcher and visiting scholar. He earned his M.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering (Transportation Engineering) at University of California, Davis and his B.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering at Hanyang University.
The University of California, Berkeley Traffic Safety Center (TSC), now UC Berkeley SafeTREC, was founded in 2000 by Dr. David R. Ragland with a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS). For over 20 years, it has made important contributions to improving roadway safety for all through research, education, and public service. SafeTREC’s mission is to inform decision-making and empower communities to improve roadway safety for all.