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Keynote Address During the IEST Membership Meeting and Awards Luncheon

Going for the Gold: Applying Athletic Coaching Principles to Team Leadership
Wednesday, May 10, 2017, 12 - 1:15 p.m. 
Dave Vess, Northrop Grumman Corporation

What do the 2016 World Series Champion Chicago Cubs and the Apollo Program team have in common? They were made up of people who excelled in their chosen field, had a shared goal and commitment for achieving that goal, and had strong leadership to see that the goal was realized. These characteristics are keys to any successful team, whether it is in athletics or in industry. But while these characteristics are shared, the methods that are used to build leaders and teams in these disparate fields are not. Within industry most of the courses on leadership and teams try to be applicable to all segments of a corporation but often times are more directed at business or program management.

 This doesn’t always translate well into other areas such as engineering. Through my personal experiences and observations as a coach for teams and individuals, I’ll demonstrate how you can apply the principles and techniques used by athletic coaches to build a well-knit group that can lead to a champion-worthy team.


About the Speaker
Dave Vess is an Environmental Test Engineer with Northrop Grumman Mission Systems in Baltimore, MD. He serves as the Technical Lead for Environmental Test on various radar and electronics programs. His particular areas of interest are dynamics testing and data acquisition. He received a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering in 2000 and a Master of Engineering in 2004 from the University of Maryland, College Park. Outside of his professional life, Dave is an avid athlete. He has participated in many events ranging from running and cycling to triathlon and duathlon. In 2014, he earned a spot on Team USA for the Long Course Duathlon Age Group World Championships, racing at the event held in Zofingen, Switzerland. His passion for sports goes beyond participation. He has received and maintains several coaching certifications. He has coached both individual athletes and teams in various sports for over 7 years. He coaches athletes of all ages and capabilities, but particularly enjoys being involved with youth athletics, especially those of his two children.