Linking Leaders - Volume II

Message from the CEO

Message from Program Development

Chapter Spotlight

Division Spotlight

New Guidance

Change in Leadership


Message from the CEO

Welcome to the second edition of Linking Leaders. I am proud to join the National Defense Industrial Association as president and chief executive officer, and to be associated with a team of professionals who make this organization the trusted leader in defense and national security associations.

A lot of hard work has gone into the realignment of headquarters and strategic transformation of our association to better serve the membership as we begin our second century of service to the defense industrial base and our national security. We all owe a debt of gratitude to Gen Craig McKinley for his leadership of this transformation and wish him well as he continues his service to our nation in other pursuits.

As I begin my tenure at the helm of NDIA, my focus is on you – the members, leaders, and volunteers who are the heart and soul of our association. Through an enterprise wide approach, I will ensure that our alignment, people, and processes support you in the best and most effective way possible. If not, we will change. 

We have some exciting new initiatives that you will hear more about in the near future.

In June, we stood up our 26th chapter, the Red River Regional Chapter based in Shreveport, LA.  It will initially focus on the warfighters and nuclear enterprise mission at Barksdale Air Force Base and Air Force Global Strike Command. We also stood up our 28th division:  Cyber and Emerging Technologies Division.  It will initially focus on offensive, multidomain cyber applications and will produce a major cyber conference in DC during spring 2018.

We look forward to hosting the Air Force Global Strike Command’s Global Strike Symposium and Exposition. Nov. 13-15, in Shreveport, and the Army Science and Technology Conference in summer 2018 in Washington, DC.

Your continued leadership, involvement, and feedback are important. If you have an idea about how we can be more efficient, I want to hear it. As with our professional staff, my door is always open, and I welcome hearing from you on a regular basis. If you want me to support an event, reach out and I will be there, if at all possible.

We have begun in earnest our preparations for the 2017 Leadership Conference, scheduled for Oct. 30. Program Development will plan and coordinate this conference with guidance and assistance from our Program Development Advisory Council. This will be a working conference aimed at finding actionable solutions to our common challenges across divisions and chapters. A forthcoming survey will set a baseline for our agenda.    

Together, we will make NDIA an even more impactful voice in support of our warfighters and the safety and security of this great nation. I look forward to meeting all of you and working with you to keep the National Defense Industrial Association our nation’s largest, most representative, and most trusted defense industry association. 

Herbert J. Carlisle
General, USAF (Ret)
President and CEO

Message from Program Development

Division and Chapter leaders,

We are proud to present our second edition of Linking Leaders!  Much has happened since our inaugural edition in March.

We are excited to welcome some new teammates into our expanding Program Development division. 

  • Dr. Heather Havens is our new vice president of program development. She will be taking over most of Bruce Roulstone’s portfolio as he moves to part time and will help me with new initiatives and special projects. 
  • Loey Bleich has returned to NDIA as program manager. She has her own set of portfolios and will provide management and mentorship of our program coordinators. 
  • Tatiana Jackson comes to us as 2017 graduate of the University of Maryland.  She is a rogram coordinator and will be responsible for her own portfolio.

Our new billets represent the implementation of an enterprise wide realignment that has been in work for the past two years and a model of shared responsibilities between meetings and business partnerships and program development.

A program manager and program coordinator on the program development team will administer many of the roles and responsibilities you have received from our meeting directors and planners. They will be assigned to particular portfolios and be your single point of contact for all program development responsibilities. These responsibilities include: agenda development, speaker requests and coordination, invitation and thank-you letters, division meeting coordination and minutes, and member communications, among others. 

Our program manager and program coordinator will report to a vice president, who will continue to oversee their respective divisions, working groups, and client events. These vice presidents will also have the primary role of problem solver and coordinate division and working group activities across the enterprise. 

As senior vice president, my primary role will be to add value to your programs while bringing new opportunities to champion programs of interest, promote the national security dialogue, and provide forums for the exchange of information. A meeting director and planner will continue to be assigned to each division and working group and will concentrate on their main responsibilities to provide all logistical support to your events and conferences.

Christine Klein, senior vice president of meetings and business partnerships,  and I are committed to ensure this new model of alignment is both transparent and seamless to our members. We ask for your help and your patience as we fully implement this new alignment, and look forward to your feedback.  

We have just added our 28th NDIA division, the Cyber and Emerging Technologies Division. Lt Gen Bob Elder, USAF (Ret.) chairs it. It will focus on multidomain cyber applications and emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, autonomy, machine learning, virtual reality, big data analytics, and other "Third Offset" initiatives. 

We also have a new chapter, Red River Regional Chapter. It serves primarily Barksdale Air Force Base and Air Force Global Strike Command's nuclear enterprise mission.

For more information on either of these new organizations, please contact me at

Gen Hawk Carlisle, USAF (Ret.) is in the seat as NDIA president and chief executive officer, and we are very fortunate to have him onboard. At the same time, we said goodbye to Gen Craig McKinley, USAF (Ret.), who for the past two years led a total transformation of NDIA to an outfit that is better positioned to serve our members well into the future.  

Lastly, we in Program Development very reluctantly say goodbye to CAPT Bruce Roulstone, USN (Ret) as a full-time vice president. Fortunately, Bruce has agreed to stay on in a part-time role and will maintain a few select Navy portfolios, as well as his leadership of PSA. 

As you all know, Bruce is the consummate professional, and his constant presence in serving our membership and mentoring our staff will be missed. 

Frank Michael
Senior vice president, program development

Chapter Spotlight: Gulf Coast Chapter

The Gulf Coast Chapter (GCC) continues its mission of education and outreach that has earned it “Model Chapter” recognition every year since 2003. President Greg Postulka proudly led the board in 2014-16, and Missy Ward became president this past spring.

GCC continues to proactively promote the NDIA mission by executing local programs tailored to enhance collaboration between government and industry.

GCC’s signature annual event is the Air Armament Symposium (AAS) — its 42nd event entitled, “Air Armament Innovation: Enabling the 3rd Offset,” took place in November 2016 and successfully brought together more than 800 members.  Attended by the three branches of the service as well as large and small businesses, this forum promoted an open exchange of ideas through discussion panels, senior leader presentations, and networking.  Proceeds from the event ensured generous funding for the chapter’s science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) activities at all grade levels. The 43rd annual AAS will take place Oct. 31-Nov. 1, 2017.

Some of the Gulf Coast Chapter’s proudest accomplishments are its seven endowed scholarships with three local college and universities: University of West Florida, Troy University, and Northwest Florida State College. In 2016 alone, nearly 30 scholarships were awarded to undergraduate students in the Florida Panhandle.  Dr. Meredith Brunen, UWF’s interim vice president for university advancement, said the school “is extremely fortunate to have generous, thoughtful, and innovative partners like the NDIA Gulf Coast Chapter. We are grateful for your foresight in establishing a scholarship endowment that will afford future generations of UWF students the opportunity to further their education and prepare for them for the professional careers of tomorrow.” 

For the past nine years, GCC has financially supported and managed the Accelerator grant program for local schools and non-profit organizations. Forty-five grants valued at approximately $1,000 each were awarded competitively in 2016 to applicants exhibiting a creative STEM focus.

This chapter never rests on its laurels and is always trying to find new ways to play a significant role in the community. This year, GCC co-sponsored a three-day International Air-to-Ground Weapons Symposium, which enjoyed participation by 26 foreign governments, defense industry prime contractors and many smaller suppliers, and the Air Force and Navy.  Additionally, the chapter recently completed a $10,000 cybersecurity commitment to UWF, addressing an area of high interest to both industry and government. Finally, GCC identified a need the Emerald Coast Science Center (ESCC), a local non-profit, and gave it a $5,000 unrestricted award.  ESCC activities with elementary school children should be lauded, since research shows that working with this age group is critical to them capturing an interest in STEM. 

The GCC Board Members, officers, advisors, and Eglin liaison are proud of the accomplishments that keep them a Model Chapter year after year.

Division Spotlight: Manufacturing Division

NDIA’s Manufacturing Division supports all aspects of the defense industrial base that produce hardware to support the warfighter.  The division seeks to:

  • Advocate national support for defense manufacturing
  • Promote defense manufacturing excellence
  • Support promising technologies, processes, and implementation methodologies
  • Conduct manufacturing research and study efforts
  • Conduct government-industry forums focused on defense manufacturing

To achieve this mission, the Manufacturing Division is organized in four primary committees:

  • DoD supply chain network
  • Manufacturing work force
  • Technology for manufacturing
  • Defense manufacturing communications

Ad-hoc committees enhance the activities of the Manufacturing Division, focusing on specific issues facing the warfighter. The Military Power Sources Ad Hoc committee is an example of the organization supporting a strategic topic that encompasses more than the division’s mission. 

Some topics impact multiple divisions. The Manufacturing Division has liaisons  to assist in the communications between the divisions. Currently, there are liaisons with the Logistics and Cybersecurity divisions. 

Like all NDIA divisions, Manufacturing Division members are volunteers. Thus, issues must be cultivated and addressed in the least amount of time possible. The division addresses these issues in the following manner:

  • Meetings
  • Networking
  • White papers
  • Workshops

The Manufacturing Division meets three times a year, usually in the Washington, DC, area. Throughout the year, the executive committee and individual committees hold various teleconferences.  Examples of activities include:

  • NDIA published white papers, “Recovering the Domestic Aerospace and Defense Industrial Base” (2011) and “Cybersecurity for Advanced Manufacturing” (2014). Both white papers are on the NDIA Manufacturing Division’s web page.
  • Supply chain workshops that include both government and industry participants and address issues and develop resolutions in a case-study format. Results of the workshops are published. The Manufacturing Division has sponsored four workshops.
  • The division is currently conducting a cybersecurity survey that canvases the defense industrial base to determine the impact of NIST 800-171 requirements for government suppliers. Survey results will be published in late summer 2017.
  • The Workforce Committee is active with organizations throughout the country in raising awareness of manufacturing as a career.  The committee works with such organizations as Nation of Makers and is sharing numerous programs, best practices, and implementing activities via social networks. To serve the defense industry with strong future pipelines of work force talent, the Manufacturing Workforce Committee has been actively supporting National Manufacturing Day, USA Science & Engineering Festival, and working to expand the maker movement.
  • The Technology Committee has contributed to recommendations on return-on-investment (ROI) metrics for advanced manufacturing enterprise.  There is a program studying ROI that has ties to recommendations presented at DMC 2015.  Most recently, the committee has contributed to defining terms under the named thrust areas of the Joint Defense Manufacturing Technology Panel, Advanced Manufacturing Enterprise Sub Panel; an advisory panel for MANTACH/OSD.  This taxonomy for areas of technology focus is being adopted in studies, road-mapping, and planning in a number of the branches.

Manufacturing Division members benefit from robust interaction between senior defense leaders, large prime contractors, and small- to medium-sized manufacturers. These interactions often lead to new partnerships and joint opportunities to pursue government-funded research projects that help advance manufacturing technologies. Additional information is available at the NDIA Manufacturing Divisions website at:

New Guidance

Mobile Apps at Chapter Events

NDIA National now is using mobile applications at a few of our larger events, such as SOFIC and I/ITSEC, to help attendees stay informed and connected throughout the conferences.

The use of the technology has spread to some of our chapters as well.  Recently, the Michigan Chapter debuted a “Mobile Conference App” for its 2017 Michigan Defense Exposition in April.  The app included features designed specifically for event activities, including a detailed schedule, speaker bios, and exhibitor listings and locations. The app also was a great way to highlight conference sponsors who supported event.  Conference attendees who downloaded the app received push notification reminders, highlighting activities or programming changes in real time.  Using apps also are a great way to “go green” by reducing printing and disposable advertisements.

Message from our Chief Operations Officer

As you are aware, in January, NDIA completed its HQ move. We’re in the same complex but a different building, and the space is awesome! A team of staff worked with the designers to create a welcoming environment, conducive to collaboration and based on active workplace principles. The space is designed to encourage staff to get away from their desks and move around, or to stay at their desks but be more active using our new sit-to-stand desks. If you are in the area, we’d love to have you stop by and check out our new digs!


 Our new, larger Eisenhower conference room


That’s the Washington Monument!

We’re rocking our sit-to-stand desks



And we love the team rooms –


I want to thank you for your support of the new financial management and audit requirements. We are still working with some of you, and we appreciate your responsiveness. Some have asked why the change.  Here’s some background that may help you understand these new requirements.

In early 2015 NDIA embarked on a series of reviews – looking at human resources, information technology, legal issues, and financial management practices. At the same time, NDIA hired a new audit firm. These changes and reviews resulted in a renewed emphasis on our fiduciary and fiscal responsibilities. In its FY15 Management Letter, the audit firm recommended  that NDIA establish policies and procedures to assist its chapters in properly and timely recording and reporting their financial transactions.  The legal review noted the chapters fall under the fiduciary and fiscal responsibility of the NDIA board, and reminded the board that it is ultimately accountable and liable for all actions and transactions of the chapters.

On one hand, the auditors suggested that all transactions of the chapters run through NDIA books – i.e. we receive all revenue and write all checks. The attorneys offered one option to require chapters to establish themselves as separate 501(c)(3) entities. NDIA leadership felt neither of these recommendations was appropriate, given how critical chapters are to our organization.

More from the legal review:

  • NDIA can allow the chapters to continue as unincorporated internal divisions. However, if it does so, it must create and implement mechanisms of increased control and oversight of chapter operations and require additional reporting from the chapters.
  • NDIA should adopt clear policies regarding contracting in its name, including establishing monetary thresholds that require NDIA board or officer approval, designating certain subject matter or engagements that require NDIA board or officer approval, and authorized signatories for contracts. NDIA must also establish and implement reporting requirements; at a minimum, NDIA should get copies of all contracts entered into in its name.

And the auditors:

  • NDIA is responsible for the internal controls over the organization’s assets, including the chapters’ funds. It cannot fulfill that responsibility without having some insight into what the assets are and how they're being used.
  • Each year, management must attest that it understands it is responsible for:
    • The design, implementation, and maintenance of internal control relevant to the preparation and fair presentation of financial statements that are free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud or error.
    • The design, implementation, and maintenance of internal control to prevent and detect fraud.

After considering the recommendations, taking into account risk and liabilities as well as operational impacts for NDIA and the chapters, NDIA sought a middle ground. Staff announced at the FY16 Leader Conference (November 2015) that, as a first step, NDIA and Women In Defense chapters would provide quarterly financial and bank statements and put the chief operating officer as a signatory on bank accounts.

We understand the additional effort that complying with these requests imparts, and we want to continue to work with you to find the right balance in strengthening our financial management environment and creating additional workload. As such, please do not hesitate to contact me or Latosha Hill, NDIA’s controller, if you have a question or concern. We might not be able to make it go away, but we do commit to working with you to find the best balance of all objectives.

Chapter Management Manual update

We recently reviewed and revised the NDIA Chapter Management Manual. In the 2015 Strategic Planning Report, our members and other constituents emphasized that NDIA’s brand, reach, and role as an honest broker between the private sector and government has value and it should be used as a platform to better position the association for the future.

The survey emphasized that the breadth of the association’s reach and strong volunteer culture are core attributes that set NDIA apart in our space. The report identified several opportunities for enhancing our services and operations to better serve our members. In response to those recommendations, NDIA has taken many steps to strengthen its infrastructure and staffing to support its volunteers in the work you do.

The new website and financial reporting requirements  and creating the Program Development Business Center to support  divisions and chapters in developing the highest quality, most relevant content and accessing speakers and other thought leaders in the field, have contributed to positioning NDIA as a forward-leaning organization.

Along those same lines, we established the annual Leadership Conference in response to your requests for more interaction with your colleagues in divisions, chapters, and NDIA staff. Your interest and participation have made that forum an important component in our planning and communication systems. We will ask the divisions and chapters to play a greater role in developing the agenda and breakout sessions for the 2017 Leadership Conference, responding to your feedback and suggestions from the previous two years.

And, as part of our continuous improvement process, we have taken your comments and suggestions and revised the Chapter Manual to make it more comprehensive, easier to use, and align it with best practices in operational and financial management. It also reflects NDIA’s legal and audit requirements. Some of the changes include:

  • Chapter bylaws - On advice of counsel, NDIA has updated many of its governance documents. One change is to shift from “chapter bylaws” to “operating principles”. NDIA’s chapters are not separate organizations but part of the enterprise. Its governing body does not have corporate fiduciary and is accountable to the NDIA national board. The operating principles set forth the basic requirements and agreements between NDIA and its chapters. Chapters may structure themselves to suit local conditions as long as they follow the minimum requirements set forth therein.
  • Finance and business practices - Each chapter’s financial statement data is summarized, reviewed by the NDIA audit firm, and included in NDIA’s audited financial statements and the IRS Form 990 for annual federal tax reporting of the corporation (NDIA and Affiliates). As a part of NDIA, chapters must be concerned about certain accountability and transparency issues. There are best practices that chapters and their treasurers should follow.  We have provided additional information to assist in administering these requirements.
  • Model Chapter Program - We take pride in how many chapters have embraced this program and strive to meet its requirements every year. As such, we have established a new program that will officially kick off in October 2017– Chapter of Excellence – to acknowledge those chapters that go above and beyond the goals for the Model Chapter Program and that plan additional initiatives that result in membership growth and satisfaction.

We are happy to discuss further these changes or anything in the manual of interest. We welcome your feedback so we can ensure the guidance and support we provide is useful as you do the important work you do. Please do not hesitate to let us know if you have questions, comments, or concerns, and we will gladly address them.

Change in Leadership

  • Missy Ward assumed presidency of the Gulf Coast Chapter from Greg Postulka.

  • Joe Welsh assumed presidency of the Delaware Valley Chapter from Brian Gocial.

  • Rich Shook assumed presidency of the Greater Hampton Roads Chapter from John “Lucky” Rivers.

  • Brian Burgess is the president of the newly founded Red River Regional Chapter.

  • Mark Newsome assumed chair of the Health Affairs Division from Kelly Laurel.

  • Mike Tucker assumed chair of the Undersea Warfare Division from Paul Normand.

  • Lt. Gen. Robert Elder is the chair of the newly founded Cyber and Emerging Technologies Division.

The former Cyber Division is now called the Cybersecurity Division.