Review Board Members

The Review Board is appointed by De Luca Foundation. The Review Board consists of five experts in the field of Electromyography, at least three of whom are not affiliated with De Luca Foundation.  The Chairperson is responsible for resolving issues of uncertainty and will only vote in case of a tie.

Paola ContessaAndrea d’AvellaKevin EnglehartHelen HuangJim Richards

Paola Contessa, Ph.D.

Research Scientist

Paola Contessa, Ph.D.Dr. Contessa is a Research Scientist at Delsys, Inc. She obtained a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Padova (Italy) in 2010. Before joining Delsys, she worked at the NeuroMuscular Research Center of Boston University (USA) for over 8 years and held an appointment as Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy and Athletic Training of Sargent College of Boston University (USA). Her research includes EMG signal processing, motor unit decomposition, motor control, the analysis and simulation of motor unit firing behavior and muscle force generation strategies.

Andrea d’Avella, Ph.D.

Professor of Physiology

Prof. Andrea d'AvellaDr. d’Avella obtained a B.Sc. in Physics at Milan University, and a Ph.D. in Neuroscience at M.I.T. (2000) working on the modular organization of the motor system under the supervision of Emilio Bizzi. In 2003 he joined the Laboratory of Neuromotor Physiology at Fondazione Santa Lucia, Rome, Italy. Since 2015 he is Professor of Physiology in the Department of Biomedical Sciences and Morphological and Functional Images at the University of Messina, Italy. His research is focused on investigating sensorimotor control of reaching and interceptive movements, muscle synergies, and motor adaptation. He has developed a decomposition algorithm to identify time-varying muscle synergies from multi-muscle EMG recordings and an approach using myoelectric control in a virtual environment (“virtual surgeries”) to directly probe the synergistic organization of the motor system. He has coordinated and participated in international research projects funded by the Human Frontiers Science Program Organization and by the European Union. He has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Society for the Neural Control of Movement from 2006 to 2015. He is a member of the Editorial Boards of the Journal of Motor Behavior, the Journal of Neurophysiology and Frontiers in Computational Neuroscience.

Kevin Englehart, Ph.D., PEng


Prof. Kevin Englehart

Kevin Englehart received his PhD in Electrical Engineering from the University of New Brunswick in 1998 and became a faculty member in Electrical and Computer Engineering. In 2001, he became the Associate Director of the Institute of Biomedical Engineering at UNB, and became its fourth Director in July 2013. He teaches courses in biomedical signal processing, statistical signal processing, and communication theory. Dr. Englehart has more than 160 peer-reviewed publications, and has authored five book chapters in biomedical signal processing. His research has resulted in significant advances in the control of artificial limbs. He has consulted on many commercial R&D projects in aeronautics, speech recognition, defense systems, and neural engineering. Dr. Englehart is a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering. He is a recipient of the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation 2014 Innovation Award, the Canadian Medical and Biological Engineering Society Outstanding Biomedical Engineering Award, and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal.

He (Helen) Huang, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Dr. He (Helen) Huang Dr. He (Helen) Huang received her Ph.D. in bioengineering from Arizona State University and her post-doctoral training in the Center for Bionic Medicine (previously Neural Engineering Center for Artificial Limbs) at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago/Northwestern University. She is a Professor of Biomedical Engineering in the Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) and North Carolina State University (NCSU) and the Director of the NCSU/UNC Closed-Loop Engineering for Advanced Rehabilitation (CLEAR) Core. Dr. Huang’s research interest lies in neural-machine interfaces for prostheses and exoskeletons, human-robot interaction, adaptive and optimal control of wearable robots, and human movement control. She pioneered EMG-based neural interface for robotic prosthetic legs. This work has won her the Delsys Prize in 2008. Her lab also invented novel control for multifunctional prosthetic arms based on EMG-driven musculoskeletal models. Her research has been sponsored by NSF, DOD, NIH, DARPA, and NIDILRR (previously NIDRR). She was also a recipient of the Mary E. Switzer Fellowship with NIDILRR (previously NIDRR) and a NSF CAREER Award and was named NC State faculty scholar in 2015. She is a senior member of IEEE and a member of the Society for Neuroscience and Biomedical Engineering Society.

Jim Richards, Ph.D.


Prof. Jim Richards

Jim Richards was appointed Professor in Biomechanics and research lead for Allied Health Professions at University of Central Lancashire in 2004. Professor Richards work includes the clinical application of biomechanics, the development of new assessment tools for chronic disease, conservative and surgical management of orthopaedic and neurological conditions, and development of evidence based approaches for improving clinical management and rehabilitation. The focus of Professor Richards work is to encourage inter-professional research and to develop direct parallels with research to the ‘real world’ of allied health work. Professor Richards holds International Professorial Chair positions at the University of Perugia, Italy; the National Taipei University of Technology, Taiwan; Universidade de Coimbra, Portugal and Palacky University Olomouc, Czech Republic and School of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering, Singapore Polytechnic and is an associate editor for “The Knee”. Professor Richards has authored over 120 peer reviewed journal papers and written and edited a number of textbooks including Biomechanics in Clinic and Research (2008) and the 5th edition of Whittle’s Gait Analysis (2012) and the forthcoming Comprehensive Guide to Clinical Biomechanics (2017). He has also contributed to Tidy’s Physiotherapy (2003, 2008, 2012), the 10th edition of Mercer's Textbook of Orthopaedics and Trauma (2012), and Experimental Research Methods: A Guidebook for Studies in Trauma Care (2015).