Huseyin Topaloglu is Promoted to Associate Professor with Tenure
Huseyin Topaloglu, who came to Cornell as an Assistant Professor in 2002, has been promoted to the position of tenured Associate Professor.
Professor Topaloglu holds M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Operations Research and Financial Engineering from Princeton University, where he was a student of Warren Powell and was a postdoctoral student in 2001. He received a BS degree from Bogazici University, Instabul, Turkey, an institution that was founded by Americans as Robert College. He grew up in what he calls a "small midwestern town," Usak, in the middle of western Turkey, between Ankara and Izmir.
Topaloglu's research interests span methodologies such as dynamic programming, stochastic programming and stochastic approximation, as applied to revenue management, management of vehicle fleets, supply chain management, emergency management, and pricing. Earlier this year he and Professor Shane Henderson received a National Science Foundation grant, to study emergency management applications of approximate dynamic programming and simulation optimization. He previously held a grant to study management of transportation fleets with applications to sizing, pricing and terminal capacity planning. The approach he developed in his PhD dissertation is being employed by the Norfolk Southern railroad.
Topaloglu said that he "cannot imagine being at a better place than Cornell ORIE. It provides a wonderful working environment: there are collaboration opportunities with world-class faculty from diverse backgrounds and the extremely motivated students are a joy to work with."
Teaching courses in simulation modeling and analysis, revenue management, inventory and production planning, scheduling theory, and systems engineering, Topaloglu received recognition as ORIE "Professor of the Year" in 2005 and 2006, as "Outstanding Professor" in 2005, and for Excellence in teaching in 2005. He regularly teaches a distance learning degree course in systems engineering via video hook-up to students at Lockheed Martin in Owego, NY and other sites. He has published more than a dozen papers in refereed journals, with several more scheduled to appear.
As an advisor to Master of Engineering projects, Topaloglu has worked with teams and individuals studying a diverse array of problems for industrial and government organizations. Project reports developed under his guidance include "Coordinating Transportation and Supply Decisions for a Government Logistics Agency," "Forecasting Call Volumes in Call Centers," "Sampling-Based Stochastic Programming Approach to Water Resources Management," "Improvement in Traffic Flow at the Tompkins County Recycling and Sold Waste Center," and "Pricing of Heavy Fuel Oil in Bayiji [Iraq] Refinery," The latter project was carried out by systems engineering student U.S. Navy Lt. Matthew Zarracina, partially via distance-learning while he was deployed to Iraq.
The process of receiving tenure at Cornell is extensive. It starts with departmental faculty, who conduct a thorough review of the candidate's research, teaching, advising and professional community service, both local and national. Letters are solicited from Cornell colleagues and outside experts. At the next step a committee of faculty from outside the department is convened to advise the college dean. The Faculty Advisory Committee on Tenure Appointments advises the Provost on the next step of the process. Positive tenure recommendations are ulitmately presented by the Provost to the Board of Trustees for consideration.
Associate Professor Huseyin Topaloglu is the latest ORIE faculty member to successfully undergo this process. "I cannot overemphasize the help that I got from my colleagues and the students that I worked with over the years," he said. "Being in one of the best OR schools in the world also drives one to do the best possible job." ORIE Director James Renegar said "we are delighted that Huseyin has been promoted. In the years since he arrived at Cornell he has proved himself to be a major asset to the School."