Rina Schneur

Past Awards

George E. Kimball Medal: Awardee(s)
2013 - Awardee(s)

Rina Schneur is the Director of the Business Analytics Group at Verizon, a company she joined in 1999. Before joining Verizon, Rina was an OR senior manager at Sabre Technologies, and did postdoctoral research at IBM Watson Research Center. Rina received the BSc in Civil Engineering from the Technion, Israel, and the MSc and PhD in Operations Research and Engineering from MIT. 

In her career, Rina has focused on applying operations research and analytics methodologies to industry problems in the areas of logistics, supply chain, network planning, telecommunication, sourcing and auctions. At Verizon she has also worked on developing solutions in capital management, marketing, performance, and operational efficiencies. She also served on Verizon’s energy board of directors. 

Rina co-founded Emptoris Inc. in 1999 and served on its advisory board for ten years. Her advisory role centered around the development of Emptoris’ unique analytics solutions of its sourcing and procurement platform. The company has grown to hundreds of employees and customers around the world and was sold to IBM in 2011. Rina co-wrote a patent on “Auctions with Volume Discounts” and won the 2004 Edelman award with Motorola and Emptoris.

 Rina Schneur has been a member of INFORMS and its predecessor ORSA since her graduate school days. She began active volunteer service in 2000 when the first council for developing the then-new INFORMS spring practice conference (today the INFORMS Conference on Business Analytics and Operations Research) was formed. She served on the advisory council for the first four years of the conference and chaired it in 2004. She joined the Meetings Committee in 2001 and after serving for four years was elected Vice President of Meetings, a role she held from 2005 through 2008. During that time the annual meeting attendance grew to more than 4000 per year. Rina was then elected to be INFORMS’ 17th president for 2011. 

As President of INFORMS, Rina Schneur focused on establishing a strategic planning process coordinated with a revised budget process; together they helped transform INFORMS into a forward-thinking organization. She led the board in its commitment to pursue involvement in analytics and to explore and develop a plan for INFORMS to become a prominent player in the field. She specifically reached out to government and non-profit organizations to explore ways to work jointly on embedding more analytics in their agencies. In the past year Rina has played a key role in building INFORMS’ Continuing Education program. 

For her contributions to the field of operations research and the management sciences and her distinguished service to INFORMS and ORSA, the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences expresses its sincere appreciation by awarding the 2013 George E. Kimball Medal to Rina Schneur.

Franz Edelman Award: Winner(s)

As the telecommunications industry underwent a massive downturn in the early 2000s, Motorola, Inc., needed to drastically reduce costs and increase productivity. In Motorola's procurement community, the priority was to reduce the cost of direct and indirect materials purchased. Realizing that a radically different approach was needed, Motorola turned to Operations Research (OR) for guidance. Combining OR-aided methods such as innovative bidding, online negotiations and scenario-based optimization analysis, Motorola launched a comprehensive system to support the company's sourcing process. Motorola's sourcing teams use the OR capabilities of optimization to identify the optimal award strategy under different scenarios while considering constraints such as parts qualification status, supplier count and capacity.
The results speak for themselves. Savings captured have exceeded $600 million thus far, including nearly $200 million (an extra 4-7%) attributed to the advanced collaboration, on-line negotiation, optimization and analysis system capabilities. Using the system not only changed the way negotiations are conducted, but has also served as a catalyst for moving Motorola from loosely coordinated efforts by individual sectors of the company to conducting truly global negotiations jointly across business units.

Access the winning project’s companion paper