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Organization Chain of Command

ADL DOD Organization chart graphic

As of April 19, 2021, the ADL Initiative reports to the Defense Human Resources Activity (DHRA), under the Director, DHRA. Previously, the ADL Initiative reported to the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Force Education and Training (DASD(FE&T)), who reported to the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Readiness (ASD(R)), who in turn reported to the Under Secretary for Personnel and Readiness (USD(P&R)) within the Office of the Secretary of Defense. Preceding this, the ADL Initiative reported to the OSD Director for Readiness and Training Policy and Programs in the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness (USD(P&R)) chain of command.

The program is organized into key functional areas, which include Research & Development, Operations, IT, and Outreach. The following individuals comprise the program leadership team.


ADL Initiative Leadership

Laura Milham, Ph.D., Director

Dr. Laura Milham is an applied human-systems scientist, with an emphasis on individual and team training and assessment. Dr. Milham brings over 25 years of experience to oversee the program’s comprehensive execution, guiding its strategy, and ensuring it aligns with US DoD and Federal government priorities.

Karen Cooper, Ph.D., Research Scientist (USN Liaison)

Dr. Karen Cooper is a Navy civilian with over 34 years of concentration in information technology and learning sciences. Dr. Cooper’s research focuses on emergent technologies, including technology-enabled learning and their impact on our 21st century learners, workers, and service people. As a scientist and engineer, she supports the execution of the ADL program’s strategy and vision and assists with leadership and guidance to the ADL team.

David Lalich, Program Analyst

Mr. David Lalich is a DoD civilian who serves within the Advanced Distributed Learning Initiative as a Program Analyst responsible for Operations. Before recent duties within Advanced Distributed Learning Initiative, he served 10 years within the Defense Travel Management Office in various Leadership/Program Analyst positions. Mr. Lalich served 26 years in the United States Air Force, serving numerous roles including Technical Training Instructor and Career Development Course Writer.


Project Management Office

Tiffani Marlowe, Deputy Program Manager (SETA Contractor)

Mrs. Marlowe is an applied research scientist with over 8 years of experience, focusing on modeling and simulation, team training and performance assessment, usability and instructional design for emerging technologies, behavioral cybersecurity, and quality assurance. As the ADL Initiative Deputy Program Manager, she supports day-to-day operations and quality and oversees the program’s comprehensive planning and execution, guiding its strategy, and ensuring it aligns with US DoD and federal government priorities.

Lisa Gangitano, Operations Principal (SETA Contractor)

Retired DoD Civilian after 32 years of service, Ms. Gangitano serves as the Operations Principal, where she plans, develops, coordinates, and oversees finance, budget, and contractual matters to support Government priorities. Ms. Gangitano has an extensive background in budget analysis and contract & program management. She holds the following credentials: Certification Management System (CMS), Certified Defense Financial Manager (CDFM), Project Management Professional (PMP), and Defense Acquisition Workforce Improvement Act (DAWIA) Level I.


Research and Development

Brent Smith, R&D Principal (SETA Contractor)

Mr. Brent Smith is a Software Systems Architect with over 20 years of experience designing and developing learning technologies for government stakeholders, defining R&D roadmaps to meet organizational objectives, and establishing chains of research that align with strategic goals. As the ADL Initiative R&D Principal, Mr. Smith helps ensure the ADL Initiative research plan is aligned with its overall strategy.

Charles Listak, Ed.D., R&D Manager (SETA Contractor)

Dr. Charlie Listak has served the federal government as a military officer and civil servant. As an Air Force pilot, he ascended to positions including Director of Operations of the 53rd Wing. Upon retirement from active duty, he became the Director of Training for the Wing. Charlie has received several awards and recognitions during his civil service career, including 2013 Air Combat Command STEM Educator of the Year, 2014 Civilian of the Year, and 2018 J7 Civilian of the Year. His most recent civil service post was USSPACECOM Chief of Training & Education. He also serves as an adjunct professor at the University of West Florida, teaching courses in Human Performance Technology, where he was recognized as the 2021 College of Professional Studies Alumni of the Year. His doctoral dissertation examined the influence of technology on high school math achievement through a socioeconomic lens.


Outreach

Karen Murgas, PMP, Outreach Principal (SETA Contractor)

Ms. Murgas has over thirty-five years of diversified expertise in project management for education and training programs and performing all aspects of outreach/event and meeting management for academic, industry, and government stakeholders. As the ADL Initiative Outreach Principal, she oversees the planning and execution of all outreach efforts domestically and internationally.