Arora, Kuligowski and Salley Receive FPE Distinguished Alumni Awards

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Raj Arora ('00), Erica Kuligowski ('01, '03) and Mark Salley  ('87, '00) have recently been inducted as Distinguished Alumni in the University of Maryland (UMD) Department of Fire Protection Engineering (FPE).

The Distinguished Alumni Award honors FPE alumni who have made a significant contribution to the mission and ideals of the Department. The awards are typically announced at the annual Alumni Dinner in association with the NFPA spring conference. This year's conference, however, was cancelled due to the pandemic, but that doesn't mean the efforts of our alumni have gone unnoticed.

Raj Arora was named CEO of Jensen Hughes last fall after a mere three years with the company. He has led significant initiatives that have established new capabilities for Jensen Hughes in strategy, mergers and acquisitions, software innovation, and business development as well as marketing and communications. Throughout his career, Arora has served in a variety of positions including Vice President and General Manager of Fire Detection and Special Hazard Products at Johnson Controls/Tyco International in Switzerland, and as Executive Vice President of Arora Engineers, Inc. in New York. Each year, Arora attends and speaks at FPE's Annual Academic Recognition Luncheon, which honors outstanding student achievement and is sponsored by Jensen Hughes.


Erica Kuligowski, who holds a Ph.D. in sociology from UC Boulder, is a sociologist and fire protection engineer with 18 years of experience working as a research social scientist and engineer in the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Engineering Laboratory. Her research on evacuation and sheltering behavior and emergency communications in disaster events has received prestigious awards from the U.S. Department of Commerce and international fire engineering organizations. Her work has led to the development of new or improved building codes and community standards, decision-making tools for disaster response such as evacuation models, and emergency alert/warning creation tools and templates. Kuligowski was a co-instructor for ENFP 413/613 for several years and has since has been a guest lecturer on an annual basis.   

Mark Salley, chief of fire research at the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), leads his team in resolving technical and regulatory concerns with deficient electrical raceway fire barrier systems, providing a risk-informed inspection approach for NRC’s post-fire safe-shutdown circuit inspections, and providing tools for enhancing realism in fire PRAs. During the pandemic, he developed remote training modules for regional inspectors to accomplish their re-qualifications in fire protection principles. Salley has also played a prominent role in developing the next generation of FPEs including serving as a technical mentor and developing knowledge management documents for fire regulation. Moreover, Salley serves as a member of the FPE curriculum advisory board.

Published July 9, 2020