Mentors

Entrepreneurialism can be a lonely road. Even the smartest inventor or businessperson has areas where he or she needs to improve, and having mentors and advisors around who can serve as a sounding board can make the difference between success and failure. We recruit experts in various fields and people who have built successful enterprises. Those experts are one of the key pieces of the Quantico Innovation Center’s mission.
George Hughes

George Hughes

President, Simventions

Utilizing his 35 years of software engineering, systems engineering, and management experience, George oversees the day to day operations of SimVentions.

Background

  • Virginia Tech (Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering)
  • Authored over 15 articles for PC, PC World, and Byte magazines.
  • Part of Design Teams for a variety of electronic warfare systems, health systems, Navy Deadeye and Army Copperhead missiles, and the Patriot Anti-Radiation Missile Decoy system.
Michael A. Coolican

Michael A. Coolican

Program Manager, Buchanan and Edwards

Mr. Coolican was commissioned in May 1988 through the NROTC Program at Villanova University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics.

Between 1991 and 2005, his operational experience consisted of three separate tours flying the AV-8B Harrier at MCAS Cherry Point,

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NC. During these tours, he served at the squadron level as Director of Safety and Standardization, Maintenance Officer, Operations Office and Executive Officer. Additionally, he was the MAG-14 Operations

Officer in 2005. In between flying tours, Col Coolican attended Amphibious Warfare School and the Marine Corps Command and Staff College where he received a Masters in Military Studies.

In the fall of 1998, Major Coolican was assigned to PMA-257, Naval Air Systems Command at NAS Patuxent River. As an apprentice in the acquisition field he began working as the Configuration Manager for the AV-8B. In June 1999, Major Coolican was re-assigned as the Future Systems Officer for the AV-8B, primarily focusing on acquisition of the LITENING II Targeting Pod (TPOD). He was responsible for

He was responsible for developing an acquisition strategy for the TPOD, ensuring a successful test plan and purchasing the first 9 LITENING Pods for the USMC. Additionally, he worked closely with HQMC to ensure follow on funding which eventually allowed PMA-257 to acquire 56 more TPODs.

In May 2000, Major Coolican attended PMT-302 in Ft. Belvoir. Upon his graduation, he returned to PMA-257 and assumed the duties as the AV-8B Assistant Program Manager Systems Engineering (Class Desk). During his year as Class Desk, he oversaw the development of the Harrier Open System Core Avionics Requirement (OSCAR), further development and deployment of the LITENING TPOD, and Obsolescence issues. Additionally, the Program office was restructured and Major

Additionally, the Program office was restructured and Major Coolican ran the Fleet Support Team along with the Assistant Program Manager Logistics. In this role, he directed the resources of AV-8 support throughout the country, managing the O&M,N and RDT&E budgets. At the end of this tour, Major Coolican completed the requisite training for a Level II certification in Program Management and was subsequently selected for a secondary MOS of 9958.

Following his job as OpsO MAG-14, he was assigned to Marine Corps Systems Command as the product manager for the Combat Operations Center (COC) program. This program provides digital, mobile, interoperable Command and Control facility which enable Commanders to fight on the 21 st century battlefield. His duties involved procuring, fielding, training and sustaining 260 COCs for all Marine Corps Battalions, Regiments and Major Subordinate Commands while  imultaneously supporting up to 30 COCs in OIF/OEF.

After serving a year as a Professor of Systems Acquisition at Defense Acquisition University teaching intermediate acquisition courses, he was reassigned to the F-35 PEO where he served as PM for Production. Col Coolican is Level III certified in Program Management, is a graduate of PMT-401 and was selected for the 8059 MOS in 2007. Prior to his assignment as PM, TRASYS, he was the

Prior to his assignment as PM, TRASYS, he was the Assistant Deputy Commander, System Engineering, Interoperability, Architectures and Technology at Marine Corps Systems Command. His final assignment in the Marine Corps was as the Department of Defense’s Director of the Joint Non-Lethal Program. He is now a Program Manager at Buchanan and Edwards, a federal IT services company.

Col Coolican is married to Stacey. He has two daughters, Shay, 20 and Casey 19 who live in North Carolina and twin 15 year old stepsons, John and Dale.

Mark J. Safferstone, Ph.D.

Mark J. Safferstone, Ph.D.

Mark joined the UMW Business Administration faculty in 1997 after a 27-year career in the public and private sectors, management consulting and university teaching. He was appointed to the position of Associate Dean at the Mary Washington College Center for Graduate and Professional Studies in 1998 which is now the UMW Stafford Campus.

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Mark has extensive leadership development experience and has specialized in designing and delivering assessment-based leadership development programs and consulting services for public and private sector executives and managers. He was a management consultant in private practice starting in 1986, served as a consultant to US OPM’s Federal Executive Institute and an array of federal agencies for 24 years and was a Senior Partner with DWB & Associates, a Northern Virginia leadership development, quality improvement and strategy consultancy for almost 15 years. During his tenure with the University of Mary Washington, Dr. Safferstone held a TS clearance.

Mark holds a Ph.D., (Vanderbilt University, Peabody College, 1977), an MBA (UMW, 2006), and a M.Ed. and a B.Ed. (University of Miami, 1972 and 1970). After 19 years at UMW and almost 25 years with the Commonwealth of Virginia, Mark retired in June 2016.  In December 2016, Mark and his wife Sharon moved to Cape Cod where they’re closer to family,including three successful adult children and two wonderfully adorable granddaughters, and have recently rescued a 2 year old Golden and live just blocks from the ocean.

Debra Wilson, CGFM

Debra Wilson, CGFM

Debra began her accounting business in 2007 after 10+ years in Governmental Accounting where she consulted at the federal agency level in audits and financial statement preparation.  After reconciling 16 programs with a government agency totaling $165M using QuickBooks Debra became focused on being an expert in QuickBooks services to a wide range of clients in the Northern Virginia area.

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Her strength in business comprehension and governmental accounting affords her a variety of clientele from Non-Profit to manufacturing commercial companies.  Debra’s accomplishments include: CGFM (1996), ProAdvisor status with Intuit since 2007, over 2000 CPE hours in Taxation, Audit, Non-Profit, and General Accounting.  She is a past member of AICPA and AGA and is a mentor for Intuit products.

Prior to working in the Northern Virginia Area, Debra served as a Chamber of Commerce Director where she was recognized by the White House in 1993 as one of 50 effective business leaders in Virginia and Maryland.

Joel Griffin

Joel Griffin

Chief Strategy Officer, Dependable Global Solutions

As the co-founder and co-owner of Dependable Global Solutions, Mr. Griffin serves as the Chief Strategy Officer, creating, communicating, executing, and sustaining strategic initiatives.

His 20+ years of professional experience – including over ten years in the cyber-security, information assurance, infrastructure protection, intelligence, and consulting industry

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– provides for broad experience involving all Security related initiatives. Mr. Griffin is a former Marine and has worked at Booz Allen Hamilton, Lockheed Martin, and Unisys.

Mr. Griffin is a graduate of the Pennsylvania State University, is a Certified Project Management Professional, and holds Certifications in Federal Emergency Management Agency Incident Command System and Emergency Operations Command.

Ethan Dietrich

Ethan Dietrich

CEO, SIXGEN LLC

A Former Army Intelligence Specialist, Mr. Dietrich joined the civilian sector as a defense contractor. He rapidly advanced from a technical writer to a senior program manager overseeing several multi-million dollar government programs.

After 10 years as a contractor, Mr. Dietrich grew frustrated with a culture that lacked an innovative mindset and nimbleness to seize and capitalize emerging technologies.  He launched his own company, SixGen, LLC in 2014

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Ethan recruited a chief technology officer with a master’s degree in artificial intelligence and a chief engineer with a background in network hacking. The team worked together to develop a product that would allow cyber security professionals to prove their skills in an interactive clinical environment; that product has become a cyber security training simulator that seeks to be the equivalent of the legal industry’s “bar exam” for cyber security professionals.

Mae Mathieu

Mae Mathieu

Deputy for Small Business Programs for Regional Contracting Office on Quantico

Born in Owego, NY graduated from Bowie State University @ Andrews AFB, MD with BS in Marketing and Naval Postgraduate School @ Monterey, CA with Master’s Degree in Program Management. Married to a retired USAF Pilot/Office of Special Investigations Commander.

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Career Accomplishments:

May 2016: Deputy for Small Business Programs on Quantico. Perform all duties and responsibilities associated with Office of Small Business Programs as it relates to the MCINCR-RCO.

Sep 2014-May 2016: 1.5 years with USMC Procurement, Policy, Quality, Metrics Branch as a Procurement Analyst generating and responding to HQ I&L for monthly, quarterly and annual reports in addition to data calls when requested.

2009-2014 5 years with US Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) Management Analyst for the Acquisition Management and Oversight Directorate reviewing and approving the funds for use for acquisitions prior to forwarding to the MICC Contracting Office. Accomplishments include: establishing the acquisition database (in SharePoint) for the TRADOC Form 5-14 (it is so successful the contracting office is now accessing the database to retrieve the contracting documents for use in contracts/solicitations); trained coworkers in writing PWS/SOW and IGCEs; and received 2 Civilian service metals from two separate 3 Star Generals for services provided. Thesis was a supplement to the US Army TRADOC Supplement (AR 5-14) for Acquisition Management and Oversight.

2006-2009 – 3 years with return to US Army Contracting with Aviation Applied Technology Directorate then to the Mission and Installation Contracting Command starting as Contract Specialist promoting to Procurement Analyst for the PARC responsible for the documents for 3 installations: Fort Rucker, Ft Jackson, and Fort Meade.

2005-2006 – 1 year with NASA Langley as Contracting Officer – wrote the task order for the study to return the Hubble Telescope to Earth.

2003–2004 – 2 years with USDA Forest Service as Contracting Officer for Washington Office – responsibilities included Conferences for the Secretary of Agriculture in the NCR; lead KO to test software for the COTS acquisition system for all of USDA procurement offices; performed as KO for computer purchases for the Forest Service; and received a 93% response from contractors for an internal audit on contract performance.

2001-2003 – 2 years with USAF at Dover AFB – Construction Contracting – procured the Golf Clubhouse on Dover AFB.

1989–1994 – 5.5 years with Army Material Command Intern, St Louis MO Aviation Systems Command for 3 years and working SAP for 1.5 years. Husband PCS move to Plattsburgh AFB in New York to close base due to BRAC.

Dr. Stephanie Carter

Dr. Stephanie Carter

Dr. Carter hold a doctorate in Enterprise Information Systems, as master’s in Information Security Systems, and a BS in Software Engineering. She also holds the following certifications: CISSP, CISM, CISA, CompTIA Security+, CompTIA Network+  (Testing for Certified Cloud Security Practitioner (CCSP) in March 2017 and presently pursuing the CCISO certification; test date undecided)

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Career Accomplishments:

Management:Dr. Carter has managed security teams of 3 to 22 and managed security awareness & training for over 4,000 personnel. She has held several senior leadership roles and have had 30 direct reports during her career.

Technical: She has served as a System Administrator, Network Engineer, Communications Security Custodian, Certificate Authority, Technical Lead, Data Center Chief, Information Management Officer, Project Management Officer and various other specific applications, systems, and legacy systems operator/administrator. The combination of this experience has created expertised from both the technical side and security side.
Infrastructure Types: Dr. Carter has worked with the following infrastructures: Classified (military), Unclassified (military/civilian), health (HIPAA), special access programs (military), command and control (military) and national security systems (military). She has also worked with civilian companies becoming FISMA compliant, and small networks to large enterprise networks.

Acquisition:Dr. Carter has managed budgets up to $100K and more than $4M worth of equipment/software.

Project Management: She has served in many project management roles with high level and detailed level activities; as well as determining critical paths. She used PMBOK best practices to conduct security activities; she created project plans and produced reports for project progression and  managed teams in order to complete projects.

Stacey R. Coolican

Stacey R. Coolican

CEO, Coolican Consulting

Stacey Coolican is a transitioning Department of Defense career Contracting Officer, service-disabled veteran and member of the Acquisition Corps. During a distinguished 20-plus year civil service career, Stacey served as a contract specialist and Contracting Officer for several agencies within the Department of Defense and is currently the Chief, Contract Operations Branch at the Defense Security Service. Stacey is also the CEO of Coolican Consulting, LLC.

 

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Stacey began her contracting career as a Procurement Technician at the Defense National Stockpile Center in Fort Belvoir, Virginia where she was quickly promoted to a Contract Specialist.  After five years, Stacey transitioned to the private sector as a Senior Acquisition Analyst at CACI.  Stacey returned to civil service a few years later and spent the next 12 years working for the Marine Corps primarily on major weapons systems programs such as the Ground Combat Support System-Marine Corps (GCSS-MC), Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacement, (MTVR), Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle (EFV), Amphibious Assault Vehicle (AAV) and the Light Tactical Vehicle (LTV).

Stacey earned a Master’s Degree in Acquisition Management from the American Graduate University and a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Networking from Strayer University (Summa Cum Laude). Stacey also holds two Master’s Certificates and two Associates Degrees from various universities.  She is a DAWIA Level III certified acquisition professional in Contracting, Level I certified in Program Management, a Certified Professional Contracts Manager (CPCM) and a previous 3-term board member for the National Contract Management Association (NCMA) Old Dominion Chapter.

Vernon Green

Vernon Green

CEO and President, GCubed Technologies

Vernon Green Jr. is a retired Chief Warrant Officer in the U.S. Army. Having served our country for 20 + years he is a Senior IT Professional with more than 22 years proven experience. Vernon established G Cubed Technology Inc. in 2014; a wellrounded SBA 8(a) certified, Service Disabled Veteran Owned, Minority Owned, Small Business.

 

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 He has a Master’s Degree in Cyber-Security, a B.S. in Computer Information Technology as well as Certified Information Security Systems Professional (CISSP), Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA), and Security+ certifications. He is an active NAACP member, serving on the Technical Advisory Board for Stafford County. Vernon has a successful track record through implementation of key projects with exceptional leadership skills; ability to quickly assess problematic situations and recommend emergency changes to critical teams. Demonstrated success in design, maintenance, and optimization of robust communication networks. Adept at communicating with management, vendors, and internal departments to coordinate and implement a joint team resolution of high profile and critical issues.
A multi-faceted technical leader with proven management skills in supervision of large scale, diverse networking team both CONUS and OCONUS. Adept at combat leadership skills requiring decision making while under adverse circumstances with time sensitive, mission critical extreme consequences. A collaborative leader and insightful analyst with superb communication skills. A management history of continuous learning, outstanding performance, adaptability.

Specialties: People and communication foremost followed by technical areas of security and networking. CISSP, CCNA, CEH, MS in Cyber-Security, B.S. in Computer Information Technology, Security+, Lean Six Sigma Black Belt Trained, VOIP..

Gary Evans

Gary Evans

CEO and President, Axcel Innovations LLC

Dr. Evans’ career has been focused on the development and commercialization of new technologies and spans Europe, the US, the GCC countries of the Middle East, and Africa.  He has been involved in founding more than 15 companies and has created and run investment funds in a variety of forms both public and private sector.

 

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He has worked with many public sector organizations to help develop and implement strategies for innovation and entrepreneurship, and has been responsible for creating and managing a number of incubation programs, research parks, and associated initiatives.  His technical expertise includes software, instrumentation, and chemistry and he has undertaken work with companies in a range of industries from oil and gas to medical devices.  He currently leads consulting and program management projects primarily for public sector clients, and serves as a mentor for two accelerators and as an advisor for a number of early stage companies.  He has also held a number of academic research and teaching positions and has been a visiting professor in two graduate business schools..

Chris Muldrow

Chris Muldrow

Principle, Rambletype LLC

Chris Muldrow, principal at Rambletype LLC and publisher of Fredericksburg.Today, has been working in digital media since 1995, with a focus on newspapers and radio. His earliest experience with Web development came soon after the advent of the Mosaic Web browser, when he transitioned the South Carolina Press Association from a dial-up bulletin board service to its first Web site.

 

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He moved to Fredericksburg, Va. In 1997 to be an assistant news editor at The Free Lance-Star. In 1999, he became editor of Fredericksburg.com. 2005, Chris moved to Birmingham, Ala., and became Vice President of Internet Operations for Community Newspaper Holdings, Inc., one of the largest newspaper companies in the United States. He lead content, advertising and technology operations for more than 90 daily newspapers and 6000 employees. Under Chris’s leadership, CNHI grew online revenue from $2 million to more than $19 million. In 2010, Chris moved back to Fredericksburg to serve as chief digital officer for The Free Lance-Star Publishing Company. He then served a brief period as Vice President of Business Development and Sales for Job.com before starting Rambletype in 2013

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