Meet ASME's Federal Fellows

2021-2022 ASME Federal Fellows

Jaclyn Brennan 2021-2022 ASME Congressional Fellow - Bioengineering
Jaclyn Brennan, PhD, began serving as ASME's Congressional Fellow (Bioengineering) in the office of the Honorable Anna Eshoo (D-CA) in the U.S. House of Representatives as of September 1, 2021. Jaclyn recently completed her PhD in Biomedical Engineering from The George Washington University and currently holds a Postdoctoral Researcher position in the same lab. Her research expertise spans cardiovascular bioengineering and cardiac electrophysiology. During her PhD, Jaclyn had the unique opportunity to perform experiments on explanted donor human hearts that were rejected for transplantation, and this work resulted in the discovery of two spatially distinct leading pacemakers in the mammalian heart. Jaclyn holds a BS in Materials Science and Engineering from Virginia Tech and an MS in Bioengineering from the University of Oklahoma. She is also an alumnus of the Whitaker International Fellows Program, where she spent a year doing basic scientific research in a hydrodynamics laboratory at École Polytechnique in Palaiseau, France. Jaclyn is passionate about both science policy and science communication. She regularly writes articles for the member magazine of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB Today) and holds a certificate in “Science Policy and Advocacy for STEM Scientists" from the University of California Irvine GPS-STEM Program.

Jaclyn is jointly sponsored by the ASME Foundation, the ASME Bioengineering Division, and ASME Government Relations.


Elisah VandenBussche 2021-2022 ASME Congressional Fellow - Energy
Elisah VandenBussche, PhD, began serving as ASME's Congressional Fellow (Energy) in the office of the Honorable Paul Tonko (D-NY) in the U.S. House of Representatives as of September 1, 2021. Elisah recently completed her PhD in Chemical Engineering and Materials Science (CEMS) from the University of Minnesota. Her graduate work focused on using novel techniques to better understand heat and electron transport at the nanoscale in photovoltaic materials. She also helped to pioneer the use of pulsed electron beams to minimize and study degradation mechanisms of radiation-sensitive materials. Beyond her research, Elisah has served in several leadership positions at the University of Minnesota, including co-founding the CEMS department DEI committee and working for the UMN Institute of the Environment and the Women in Science and Engineering Initiative. In these roles, her efforts have focused on building diverse coalitions within the department, college, and university to address injustice and inequity in STEM education and in environmental and energy development spaces. She has also worked as a volunteer researcher for the Minnesota House Energy and Climate Finance and Policy Committee and helped to found the Twin Cities Science Policy Network. Elisah holds a BS in Chemical Engineering and a BA in Violin Performance from Case Western Reserve University.

Elisah is jointly sponsored by the ASME Foundation, the ASME Petroleum Division, and ASME Government Relations.


Michael Woodmansee 2021-2022 ASME Congressional Fellow - Manufacturing
Michael Woodmansee, PhD, began serving as ASME's Congressional Fellow (Manufacturing) in the office of the Honorable Chris Coons (D-DE) in the U.S. Senate as of September 1, 2021. Previously, Michael was Director of European Operations for Schlumberger Oilfield Services, where he held a wide variety of roles in engineering and manufacturing, field operations, sales and marketing, HR, IT, and corporate transformation over his 15 years there. In addition to various domestic assignments across the U.S., Michael has also completed overseas assignments in Brazil, Algeria, Russia, and the UK. Prior to his time in the oilfield, Michael was a staff scientist at Jaycor where he utilized CAD modeling and optimization algorithms to predict stress fractures in military recruits. Michael has experience in heavy manufacturing at GE Transportation, medical product development at Bristol Myers Squibb, and composites manufacturing at General Composites. Michael currently manages the Amazon.com Ultra-Fast Fresh operations for the Washington DC region, where he volunteers as a Business Mentor for SCORE, providing guidance and support to current and prospective small business owners in the national capital region. Michael joined ASME in 1994, previously served in the 2004-2005 Leadership Development Initiative (currently ECLIPSE), and was a member of the Young Engineer Correspondents. Michael has been an officer of the ASME San Diego Section and later an active member of the ASME South Texas Section. He holds a BS in Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering from Cornell University, as well as an MS and PhD in Mechanical Engineering from Georgia Tech, where he was awarded a doctoral fellowship from the National Physical Science Consortium and Sandia National Labs; he studied the effects of thermomechanical fatigue on microstructural evolution in solder interconnects in electronics. Michael has been licensed as a Professional Engineer in Texas since 2007.

Michael is jointly sponsored by the ASME Foundation and ASME Government Relations.


Alaa Elwany, PhD 2021-2022 ASME Foundation Swanson Fellow - Advanced Manufacturing
Alaa Elwany, PhD, began serving as an ASME Foundation Swanson Fellow at the Advanced Manufacturing National Program Office (AMNPO) as of September 1, 2021. Alaa is currently an associate professor in the Wm Michael Barnes ‘64 Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at Texas A&M University. He is also a College of Engineering Faculty Fellow and holds a courtesy appointment at the Department of Materials Science and Engineering. Prior to joining Texas A&M University, Alaa served as a research scientist at the Manufacturing Systems Research Laboratory, General Motors R&D. He also held overseas appointments including faculty member at Eindhoven University of Technology (Netherlands) and Senior Fellow at the European Institute for Statistics, Probability, and Stochastic Operations Research (EURANDOM). Alaa completed his PhD in Industrial and Systems Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology and his MSc and BSc in Production Engineering from Alexandria University. He was recognized with multiple young investigator awards from leading organizations, including the ASME Chao and Trigger Young Manufacturing Engineer, SME Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer, NSF CAREER Award, and IBM Faculty Award. As director of AMTex laboratory at Texas A&M, Alaa’s research focuses on modeling, optimization, and control of metal additive manufacturing processes. The impacts of his research activities include enabling the fabrication of smart active metallic structures with spatially tailored properties, developing efficient printability assessment frameworks for newly designed additive manufacturing materials, and developing new data analytics tools for defect detection, part qualification, and additive manufacturing process monitoring control. He also serves on the leadership team of NASA’s STRI: Habitats Optimized for Missions of Exploration. Alaa is passionate about advanced manufacturing research and development and the U.S.’ advanced manufacturing workforce.

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