Dr. James Popio

Dr. James A. Popio is Vice President of Operations -  North America of the Smithers Materials Science and Engineering division. Prior to his current role, he was Vice President and General Manager of Smithers in the United Kingdom. Before that, he was General Manager and Director of Engineering at Smithers' Tire and Wheel Testing Laboratory in Ravenna, Ohio. 

Jim has worked with the tire and rubber industry for 20 years and has spent his professional career working for and/or with tire companies, tire dealers, automotive OEMs, industry suppliers, manufacturers, standards organizations, and government agencies.  

Expertise: Tire performance, characterization and methods development

Jim has extensive experience in tire performance, characterization, and methods development. His specialty areas of expertise are force and moment, endurance, aging, compliance, indoor wear, rolling resistance, and characterization for modeling. Jim is a regular contributor to industry journals as well as a chair and speaker at major tire and rubber conferences. 

Qualifications and Professional Accreditation

Jim has a PhD in engineering and and MS, and BS in mechanical engineering from the University of Akron.


  • ASME
  • ASTM International
  • IANA
  • ACS – Rubber Division
  • Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA)
  • SAE International
  • Tire Society
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