Summary

I am a program manager—a manager that oversees many concurrent, related projects—with a keen interest in scientific research and development (R&D). I excel in matching highly-educated, creative people with R&D projects and then encouraging and supporting them through the planning, learning, and development phases of their respective efforts.

Most Recent Role

During the period 2000-2017, I led a team of 10-16 scientific programmers and together we supported each year 12-20 different scientific research projects for the Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Research and Development. I was an employee of Leidos Corporation (formerly Lockheed Martin, IS&GS). For those 17 years, I served as manager of the scientific visualization group in the United State Environmental Protection Agency's Environmental Modeling and Visualization Lab (EMVL).

My group supported areas of research ranging from modeling embryonic tissue development to integrating and visualizing multi-terabyte datasets from models, satellites, ground observations, and aircraft.

Aspirations

In 2017, I am seeking an R&D program management position that places a greater emphasis on technology transfer: moving ideas from the laboratory into useful, practical, and hopefully profitable, products and services. I enjoy working with scientists, engineers, and scientific programmers and seek an opportunity to help such people translate the fruits of their labor into results that make a positive impact on our environment and overall quality of life.

I would especially find it gratifying to work in a position where application of the North Carolina State University Technology Entrepreneurship and Commercialization (TEC) Algorithm is appreciated and beneficial—if not also profitable.

The Science of Loving What You Do


In his Study Hacks article, "Beyond Passion: The Science of Loving What You Do," Cal Newport identifies what I agree are the three principal elements of enjoyable work:

  • Autonomy
  • Competence
  • Relatedness

While I had long had a pleasant degree of autonomy in my last job--in the form of a fairly flexible schedule and hands-off management--and I had steadily worked my way up to a high level of competence through formal education and active self-directed learning, relatedness came last and was the most difficult to achieve.

Newport defines relatedness as “a feeling of connection to others.” Connecting with others requires spending time with those others. In his master work, The Effective Executive, Peter Drucker observes that time is the most precious resource an executive posesses; and Jim Rohn often observed we all have the same amount of time--approximately 24 hours each day--so we can't have any more time. Drucker and Rohn agree that we have to use the time we do have very efficiently.

I learned that I had to change my priorities and shed low-vaue tasks in order to free up time to meet one-on-one with my staff and as a team in order to listen to their concerns and ideas and share with them my thoughts and observations. In my line of work, creative, intelligent people are the driver of success. They deserve as least as much of my time as the customer does. In terms of time priorities, my own management comes in third, and everyone else, such as vendors, a distant fourth.   

As I search for my next job, I will seek a position in which these three facets of work are reprioritized: (1) Competence; (2) Relatedness; and (3) Autonomy. My goal is to build the autonomy based on the quality of the first two elements.

 

Leadership and Creativity in Science & Engineering

 

Firms often fall far short of deriving the full commercial value of the ideas and talents available from their people. Too often, intelligent, hard-working, and creative staff offer ideas and opportunities that go unrecognized. In addition to the loss of potential intellectual property and its revenue, the failure to tap these possible business opportunities often demoralizes the very staff the firm needs to perform at a high level.

For organizations involved in scientific or engineering research and development that want to make the most of their human capital, I can help. I bring more than a decade of experience and formal education in technology transfer to my work.

Since 2000, I have learned to maximize my scientific computing team’s potential by matching individuals to projects with the best possible mapping of skills to requirements, aspirations to project objectives, and personalities of the staff member with the project’s principal investigator.

In May 2009, I earned my Master of Business Administration (MBA) from North Carolina State University, concentrating in Technology Entrepreneurship and Commercialization (TEC). In this rigorous program, I learned the details of taking technology ideas from the laboratory to the marketplace.

Unlike most technical people with an MBA, I derive my greatest satisfaction from working with people: defining their goals with them and then leading the way in overcoming bureaucratic and financial obstacles to reach those goals. And unlike many business people in large organizations, I focus on outcomes, not processes. The scientists, programmers, and engineers I work with are creative when doing their best work. Where processes obstruct creative development, these processes need to be modified or discarded altogether.

I enjoy my work most when I’ve helped someone achieve their goal(s) and they then feel empowered to push ahead to achieve even greater things.

 

Project Management Institute Certifications

 

Program Management Professional (PgMP)

Project Management Professional (PMP)

 
 

Agile Certified Practitioner
(ACP)