Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government


Chain of Command

Originally, 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. Until April 18, 2021, 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. Today, the ADL Initiative reports to the Defense Human Resources Activity (DHRA), under the Director, DHRA.

ADL Initiative Leadership

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

Sae Schatz, Ph.D., Director

Dr. Sae Schatz is an Army civilian and an applied human-systems scientist, with an emphasis on human cognition and learning, instructional technologies, adaptive systems, human performance assessment, and modeling and simulation. As the ADL Initiative Director, Dr. Schatz oversees the program’s comprehensive execution, guides its strategy, and ensures it aligns with US DoD and Federal government priorities.

Laura Milham, Ph.D., Director of Innovation (USAF Liaison)

Dr. Laura Milham is an Air Force civilian and an applied human-systems scientist, with an emphasis on individual and team training and assessment. As the ADL Initiative Director of Innovation, 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 33 years in both technology and learning sciences. Dr. Cooper’s research interest includes emergent technologies - virtual environments, LVC, mobiles, serious games, gamification, adaptive learning, crowd sourcing, digital story, social networking architectures - and their impact on our 21st century learner, worker and service person. As a scientist and engineer, she holds several computer and network certifications and is a graduate of several DoD leadership and technology programs.

Derrick Vincent, Principal Program Manager (SETA Contractor)

Mr. Vincent has over 30 years of experience in training, exercises, wargaming, space and missile operations, missile defense, Modeling and Simulation (M&S), Testing and Evaluation (T&E), and management experiences with the DoD and US military, retiring from the US Air Force. He received his undergraduate degree from Florida State University and his master’s degree at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He spent his last ten years in the Air Force working for USSTRATOM J9 in the M&S/Wargame branch, and at NORAD and USNORTHCOM J7 Training, Exercises, and Wargaming directorate as a research analyst. After retirement, he spent two years working at NORAD and USNORTHCOM as a government civilian in the Wargame division focusing on discovery learning. As the ADL Initiative’s Program Manager, he oversees the program’s comprehensive planning and execution, guiding its strategy, and ensuring it aligns with US DoD and federal government priorities.

Tiffani Marlowe, Deputy Program Manager (SETA Contractor)

Mrs. Marlowe is an applied research scientist with over 8 years of experience, with an emphasis 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.

Research and Development

Brent Smith, R&D Principal (SETA Contractor)

Mr. Brent Smith is a Software Systems Architect with over 20 years of experience in 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 agenda is aligned with its overall strategy.

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

Dr. Charlie Listak has served the federal government as both 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.


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 as well as 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.