he entered the transportation field over 45 years ago, Dolf May has made
significant contributions to the design, operation, and simulation of
freeways, rural highways, urban streets and intersections. Much of Dolf’s career, over 37 years, has been as an educator
and researcher. He has supervised the research of over 25 doctoral students. He has published over 300 technical papers and reports. To quote Donald S. Berry, Murphy Professor Emeritus at
May is a top-notched researcher. Many
of his papers are classics, such as A Friction Concept of Traffic Flow
(1959), A Deterministic
Queuing Model (1967), Evaluation of Single- and
Multiple- Regime Traffic Flow Models (1968), Optimization Techniques
Applied to Improving Freeway Operations (1974), Queuing Supply Modeling
for Transportation Systems Management (1981), and Models for Freeway
Corridor Analysis (1981).
P. Jovanis of the University of California at Davis and one of Dolf’s
former students comments on the enduring quality of his work:
His 1967 study Simulation Study of Load Factor at Signalized
Intersections, published in Traffic Engineering magazine (1968),
literally created a sensation and resulted, 18 years later, in the use
of delay as the level of service criterion for signalized intersections.
1990 Dolf was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in
recognition of the quality of his work in traffic engineering and
traffic flow in particular. Out
of the 1,000 engineers so elected, Dolf is one of fewer than 20 who
practice transportation engineering.
He has received the Theodore M. Matson Award (1992), the
Transportation Research Board’s 1994 Distinguished Lectureship, the
American society of Civil Engineering’s Francis C. Turner Lecturer, an
CALTRANS 1987 Award for Excellence in Research.
career included working for a consulting firm, serving as the first
Director of the Chicago Area Expressway Surveillance Project for the
Illinois Department of Transportation and a brief tour of duty on the
staff of the Institute of Traffic Engineers as the Assistant Secretary.
contribution to the science of transportation engineering has impacted
each of us. His
contributions to the Highway Capacity Manual, the 1990 textbook that he
authored --Traffic Flow Fundamentals, the articles, technical papers,
the seminars, the lectures, the committees that he has served on as a
member or as chair have advanced our profession.
At one time or another most of us have been a student of Dolf
we celebrate Dolf’s service to our profession by awarding him with
Honorary membership. Dolf
joins two others from the San Francisco Bay Section who have been so
honored-- Ross T. Shoaf and James H. Kell.