Kathy Notarianni, PhD., P.E.

Kathy A. Notarianni is the Head of the Department of Fire Protection Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI). Notarianni works with the university's fire protection engineering faculty to plan for the future of graduate studies and research in fire protection engineering, which incorporates elements of civil, structural, electrical and chemical engineering to make structures, vehicles, clothing and people safer from fire. She strives to build strong networks with agencies, laboratories, universities and companies having common interest in fire protection engineering education and research.

She has been awarded over $5M in research grants from multiple governmental sponsors such as NASA, NIH, and the U.S. Navy. She is a fellow in the Society of Fire Protection Engineers.

Prior to joining WPI, Notarianni managed a group of scientists and engineers in a technical program of integrated performance assessment and risk at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Gaithersburg, MD. The program serves to produce tools to quantify fire events for fire hazard and risk assessment; fire fighting operations and training; fire investigations and performance evaluations of fire protection systems in buildings; and transportation networks and vehicles in response to fire.

Notarianni is well published, having authored or co-authored more than 30 publications, including chapters in two books, the ”Handbook of Fire Protection Engineering,” and ”Improving Regulations.” She has been recognized by the SFPE and U.S. Department of Commerce with awards for leadership and performance.

Notarianni holds a B.S. in chemical engineering and a M.S. in fire protection engineering, both from WPI. She later earned a Ph.D. in engineering and public policy from Carnegie Mellon University, where she did her doctoral dissertation on ”The Role of Uncertainty in Improving Regulation: A Case Study in Fire Protection.”