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Panelist Bio

Richard "Rick" Koubek
Dean of the LSU College of Engineering

Dr. Richard J. Koubek began his tenure as Dean of the College of Engineering at LSU in 2009 after more than 23 years in academia. As dean he holds the Bert S. Turner Chair in Engineering.

Prior to coming to LSU, Koubek was Professor and Head for the Harold and Inge Marcus Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering at Penn State where he also held the Peter and Angel Dal Pezzo Department Head Chair. Formerly, he held the posts of Professor and Chair for the Department of Biomedical, Industrial and Human Factors Engineering, and Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies for the College of Engineering and Computer Science at Wright State University.

Koubek served six years on the faculty in the School of Industrial Engineering at Purdue University and began his academic career as a faculty member in the College of Engineering and Computer Science at Wright State University.

He is highly regarded with respect to research and successful in supporting initiatives. He has authored and co-authored countless technical engineering journals, articles, book chapters and books and has given many invited presentations around the globe including Tokyo, Beijing and the United Kingdom. He has served as principal investigator and/or co-investigator on numerous research grants.

Koubek has served as a proposal reviewer for the National Science Foundation, NASA and the Office of Naval Research. Most recently, he was appointed to serve on Tsinghua University’s Department of Industrial Engineering’s International Advisory Board. He also serves on the Board of Directors for the Industrial Modernization Center and the Consortium for Advanced Manufacturing Productivity.

Koubek’s awards include the 2013 Governor's Technology Award, the “Click-It” Award for Innovative Use of Instructional Technology, and the Pritsker Outstanding Teaching Award at Purdue University. He also served as a NEC Corporation Faculty Fellow. In 2001, Koubek was named Department Chair of the Year at Wright State University. He is also listed in the Who’s Who in Engineering Education, the Who’s Who in Science and Engineering, and the American Society of Engineering Education.

Koubek holds bachelor’s degrees from Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Okla., and Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago, and a master’s degree and doctorate in industrial engineering from Purdue University. He and his wife, Valerie, live in St. Francisville, Louisiana.

Current Topic

     09/18 - Revisiting Reform

Are the criminal justice reforms working as intended?
In 2017, Louisiana’s legislature passed the Justice Reinvestment Act, which sought to reduce the state’s highest-in-the-nation incarceration rate. The bill was championed by Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards and received bipartisan support including from community and business leaders. Now, just over a year later, the legislation has become a political football. State Attorney General Jeff Landry and Senator John Kennedy, both Republicans considering a run against Edwards in 2019, suggest that the reform package is a failure. They cite murders committed by two inmates released since the Act’s implementation.

Are the criminal justice reforms working as intended? Has the legislation put more residents in harm’s way or are plea deals part of the problem?

Louisiana Public Square looks for answers to these questions and more on “Revisiting Reform” Wednesday, September 26 at 7pm on LPB and in New Orleans on WLAE.

Our panelists are:
• E. Pete Adams, Executive Director, La. District Attorneys Association
• Alanah Hebert, ACLU of Louisiana & Justice Reinvestment Task Force
• Andrew Hundley, Louisiana Parole Project
• Sec. Jimmy LeBlanc, La. Department of Corrections

The program features interviews with Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry; Rep. Terry Landry, D- New Iberia, with the Justice Reinvestment Oversight Council; Deputy Assistant Secretary Natalie Laborde, with the Louisiana Department of Corrections; and Stephanie Riegel, editor of the Baton Rouge Business Report.

LPB CEO, Beth Courtney and professor Robert Mann with the LSU Manship School of Mass Communication host the show.

Louisiana Public Square can also be heard on public radio stations WRKF in Baton Rouge; Red River Radio in Shreveport and Monroe; and WWNO in New Orleans. Check their station websites for schedule.

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Special Presentation

     05/16 - Louisiana Veterans Coming Home

What challenges do our returning veterans face?

Coming Soon!

     10/18 - Louisiana Veterans Back Home

What are the programs and initiatives helping our veterans successfully transition to civilian life?

Recent Topics

     08/18 - The Power of Reading

How can we make inroads to improve adult literacy in Louisiana and champion a joy of reading from pre-school into adulthood?

     07/18 - Preventing Suicide

How is Louisiana addressing its suicide problem?

     06/18 - Louisiana: Sportsman’s Paradise or Problem?  (ENCORE)

Is Louisiana a Sportsman’s Paradise or Problem?

     05/18 - News About the News

How can viewers distinguish between fact and fake news and is social media blurring the difference?
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