James M. Conrad, Ph.D., PE, PMP
Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering, UNC Charlotte




Office:  EPIC 2164, Labs:  EPIC 2124 (research), EPIC 2130 (teaching).
Phone: 704-687-8597, Fax: 704-687-4762
Snail Mail:  UNC Charlotte, ECE Department, EPIC 2254, 9201 University City Boulevard, Charlotte, NC 28223-0001
UNCC email:  jmconrad@uncc.edu

Fall 2013 office hours: Mon/Wed. 1:00 - 2:00 pm.

James M. Conrad received his bachelor's degree in computer science from the University of Illinois, Urbana, and his master's and doctorate degrees in computer engineering from North Carolina State University. He is currently a professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. He has served as an assistant professor at the University of Arkansas and as an instructor at North Carolina State University. He has also worked at IBM in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, and Houston, Texas; at Ericsson/Sony Ericsson in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina; and at BPM Technology in Greenville, South Carolina.  Dr. Conrad is a Professional Engineer, a Senior Member of the IEEE and a Certified Project Management Professional (PMP).  He is also a member of Eta Kappa Nu, the Project Management Institute, and the IEEE Computer Society.  He is the author of numerous books, book chapters, journal articles, and conference papers in the areas of robotics, parallel processing, artificial intelligence, and engineering education.

IEEE Region 3 Director Election - fall 2013

James Conrad is on the ballot for IEEE Region 3 Director/Director-Elect.  The election will be in the fall of 2013.  The elected volunteer will serve as Director-elect in 2014-2015, Director in 2016-2017, and Past Director 2018-2019.  It is an honor to be nominated to serve in this important role.  Balloting opens August 15 and closes October 1.  Visit the IEEE Annual Election page for more information.

Here is a copy of the pages that appears in the IEEE election book.

What do you believe are the major issues facing IEEE?

  1. Young engineers are not convinced of the value of membership, and hence do not join.
  2. Older engineers sometimes no longer see the value of membership, and hence do not renew.
  3. Employer are not convinced of the value of membership to their employees, and hence do not support their involvement in activities.

In many cases, this is nothing more than a marketing issue - we need to show the MONETARY value of the products members use. For example, if the local IEEE section offers a free meeting on a technical topic, it should be shown that this education offered by a for-profit organization would cost $n, a substantial cost savings to the member and his/her employer.

What do you think is the number one goal for IEEE leadership?

The number one goal is to remain relevant to the members in a financially sustainable way.  In my work as an industry project manager and university department associate chair, I have learned that continual "firefighting" - in this case the efforts to retain members - is indicative a larger, systemic problem.  The problem is that relevance is highly dependent on age in the field, specific industry, and region of the world.  I will push to have the IEEE predict the needs that members will have in five years and start building products now for deployment in the future, rather than worrying only about "catching up."

What qualifies you for the job?

I have a breadth of experiences that reflect the breadth of the membership.  I have firsthand knowledge of the needs of the software engineer, project manager, hardware engineer, researcher, professor, entrepreneur, student, and volunteer.  I have worked in large companies and start-ups, universities and community colleges.  I have seen where IEEE has provided the necessary products to make me successful, and where the IEEE did not provide the needed products.  With my past IEEE volunteer experiences and work skills I feel I bring the best balance of industry, academia, project management, and passion to the position.  I also bring enough of an inquisitive nature to question the status quo if it does not appear to work anymore.


This page maintained by James Conrad - last modified 2013-08-08.
Copyright 1994-2013 James M. Conrad. All rights reserved.