Two faculty members in West Virginia University’s Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources have been appointed to interim administrative posts.
Matthew Valenti, professor in the Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering, has been named interim department chair, effective July 1.
Valenti began his career as a faculty member in the Lane Department in 1999 after receiving his doctorate in electrical engineering from Virginia Tech earlier that year. He has received numerous awards throughout his career, including the 2013 WVU Foundation Outstanding Teaching Award and Fellow status from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. Valenti currently serves as a faculty representative on the WVU Board of Governors, past faculty chair for WVU’s Faculty Senate and director of the Center for Identification Technology Research.
He replaces Brian Woerner, who will continue to serve as a member of the Department’s faculty.
“Brian has made many significant advances and he has guided the Lane Department through several ABET accreditation renewals,” said Gene Cilento, Glen H. Hiner Dean of the Statler College. “Under his leadership, the Department has grown significantly, has strong academic and research programs and has been able to recruit excellent faculty.”
A member of the Extension faculty since 2014, Brady directs operations at WVU’s Academy for Mine Training and Energy Technologies, training more than 4,000 miners annually. He previously served in safety-related positions with Murray American Energy Corporation, CONSOL Energy and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration.
Brady earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and technology at Fairmont State University and will earn a master’s degree in safety management from WVU this May. He replaces Jim Dean, who had served as director 25 years and will continue as an extension agent.
“During his tenure, Jim has worked to improve and maintain the quality of our mining and industrial extension programs,” Cilento said. “He has made significant advances and has guided the Department through significant growth. With a changing mining industry, Jim focused on ways to maintain the vitality of the Department and has been able to recruit a great staff over the years to support Departmental activities.”