CMER Director

Nicholas Loyd, Ph.D.

CMER Director; Clinical Assistant Professor

 SST 142

Nicholas (Nic) Loyd is a clinical assistant professor for the Industrial and Systems Engineering and Engineering Management department at UAH, with the primary responsibility of leading the Engineering Management graduate program. His primary research interests are The Toyota (and Lean) Production System, strategic management and culture change, supply chain management, and emerging technologies in advanced manufacturing.

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CMER Staff

staff_amAllison Moore


 SST 144


Allison has been with UAH for fourteen years and is the budget analyst for the Center for Management and Economic Research (CMER). She handles all the financial aspects of CMER along with proposals and contracts. Allison has a Bachelor’s degree in Finance from The University of Alabama in Huntsville.



  • B.S., Finance, The University of Alabama in Huntsville, 2006


Emily Finney


 SST 145


Ms. Pate is a media and marketing specialist for the Center for Management and Economic Research (CMER) and supports the ATN center. She has worked with CMER for six years. She handles the marketing aspects of the center including website maintenance, training registration & preparation, promotion, videography, photography, and graphics. Ms. Pate earned a Bachelor’s degree from UAH in Marketing in 2013 and a second bachelor’s from UAH in Studio Art in 2019.



  • B.A., Studio Art, The University of Alabama in Huntsville, 2019
  • B.S., Marketing, The University of Alabama in Huntsville, 2013


  • Technology-Driven Market Intelligence & Technology Scouting, 2017
  • Research Data Management and Sharing, 2016


 Jeff Siniard


 SST 141


Jeff Siniard is the Lean Enterprise Research Scientist at the Center for Management and Economic Research, where he has trained hundreds of executives, managers, engineers and operators in Lean Enterprise principles and he has conducted over 500 Kaizen events for manufacturers and service providers throughout the United States, Canada, and Western Europe.

Siniard’s experience and leadership has resulted in millions of dollars of impacts and hundreds of jobs created or retained for clients in industries as diverse as automotive, steel fabrication and distribution, aerospace, medical, and flexible packaging. Jeff was also a pioneer in developing Lean services for seaport operations.

Prior to joining CMER, Jeff was the Plant Manager for Martin Industries and was responsible for the organization’s Athens site including day-to-day operations, finance and budgeting. logistics and supply chain, and making hiring decisions.


  • B.S., Management of Technology, Athens State University


  • Toyota Production System Support Center for Top Management
  • Toyota Kata Coaching
  • NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) Lean Manufacturing Trainer
  • MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) certified Lean Aerospace instructor
  • LAI Lean Healthcare certified Trainer
  • Practical Energy practitioner

Jeff Thompson

Research Scientist VI, S3


Jeff Thompson is an experienced business development professional working with small and medium sized enterprises in urban and rural areas of Alabama. His work includes specialized industry research to assist communities, government organizations, and private companies with growth initiatives. Projects include economic impact analyses, industry profiles, innovation market research, and strategic planning for all types of organizations.

Jeff is experienced in economic development, corporate finance, management consulting, applied research, and managing business organizations. He has served in the roles of chief operations officer, executive director of an industry association, director of small business development, manager of small business and research programs, corporate financial planning, and research scientist. He regularly interacts with local businesses and business groups in north Alabama.

Jeff holds an M.B.A. from the University of Alabama in Birmingham and a B.S. in accounting from the University of Alabama.


  • M.A., Finance and Management Systems, The University of Alabama at Birmingham, 1986
  • B.S., Accounting, The University of Alabama, 1980



  • Certificate of Management Accounting (1985-1991)

Karen Yarbrough


 SST 143

Ms. Yarbrough is the Senior Business Advisor within the Center for Management & Economic Research.  She specializes in marketing research, strategic business communications, and management consulting. She has served in the role of president, chief financial officer, and partner in several marketing and management consulting companies. She has  worked with a range of clients from high-tech computer and engineering companies to small retail operations since 1982.  Yarbrough holds a B.A. in Communications from the University of Alabama.

View Karen Yarbrough's profile on LinkedIn

Affiliated Staff

Affiliated Research Center Staff