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CONTACT: Mr. Eric Durr, (518)786-4581 or (cell) (518) 429-5186
FOR RELEASE: Saturday, Apr 25, 2009
ON SITE: Mr. Eric Durr, (cell) (518) 429-5186

National Guard Officers Learn in Extremis Leadership Skills

Media Advisory


Approximately 200 officers of the New York Army and Air National Guard, along with officers of the New York Naval Militia and the New York Guard, the state's volunteer defense forces. Speakers will be West Point professors Col. Tom Kolditz, Dr. Mathew D. Philips and Col. Patrick Sweeney and David McGuiness, principle deputy assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs.


SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY (04/23/2009)-- West Point experts on "in extremis leadership", building trust in a leader, and coping with traumatic incidents will speak with officers of the New York Army and Air National Guard during the annual Adjutant General's Professional Development Day at the Saratoga Hilton on Saturday April 25. Members of the media are invited to attend. The Adjutant General's Professional Development Day brings officers of the New York Military Forces from around the state together for a day of professional dialogue and learning from each other and world class presenters. Col. Kolditz, Col. Sweeney, and Dr. Philips will discuss the way leadership styles are shaped by exposure to danger and how there are lessons to be learned that can be applied to both the battlefield and the office. McGuiness will give Guard officers and update on the latest developments in the Reserve components of the military.


April 25, 2009 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (See Schedule of events)


The Saratoga Hilton, 534 Broadway, Saratoga Springs, New York

Coverage Opportunities: Col. Kolditz, Lt. Col. Sweeny and Dr. Philips will be available for media interviews, as will Major General Joseph Taluto, the Adjutant General, and other leaders of the New York National Guard .


Schedule: -8 a.m., Opening Ceremony -8:30 a.m., David McGuiness Remarks -1 p.m.- Dr. Mathew Philips - Post Traumatic Growth -2 p.m. Col. Patrick Sweeney- Trust Development -3:15 p.m. Col. Tom Kolditz- In Exremis Leadership -4:45- Major General Joseph Taluto-Closing Comments David McGinnis, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs: David L. McGinnis serves as the principal staff adviser and assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Reserve Affairs) for all functional areas and responsibilities assigned to the office. Mr. McGinnis served as the Virginia Veterans Mental Health Coordinator and advisor to the Commissioner, Department of Mental Health, Mental Retardation and Substances Abuse Services. More recently he was included as the only state member of the Federal Partners Priority Working Group. Mr. McGinnis was the senior fellow of the National Guard Association of the United States from 1997 to 2000. Prior to serving on the Association staff he served as Principal Director to the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (Reserve Affairs) (Strategic Plans and Analysis) from 1993 to 1997. In his last military department assignment Mr. McGinnis was Director, Force Management for the Army National Guard from 1990 to 1993 and for the concluding eight months concurrently performed the duties of Deputy Director of the Army National Guard. Mr. McGinnis is a Graduate of the Army War College. He resides with his wife Charlotte in Williamsburg, Virginia. Col. Tom Kolditz: Colonel Tom Kolditz is author of In Extremis Leadership: Leading as if Your Life Depended on It, The book is based on more than 100 interviews taken on the ground in Iraq during combat operations. In 2007 he was named as a leadership Thought Leader by the Leader to Leader Institute and as a Top Leader Development Professional by Leadership Excellence in November, 2008. He is Professor and Head of the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership at the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York. Kolditz has served in an array of military tactical command and technical staff assignments worldwide, commanding on three continents, and as a leadership and human resources policy analyst in the Pentagon. His department is responsible for teaching, research, and outreach activities in Leadership, Psychology, Sociology, and Management at West Point. He holds numerous degrees, including a Bachelor's degree in Psychology and Sociology from Vanderbilt University, as well as Masters and Ph.D. degrees in Social Psychology, a Master of Military Arts and Science, and a Masters in Strategic Studies. Dr. Michael Matthews: Dr. Michael Matthews is currently Professor of Engineering Psychology at the United States Military Academy, where he serves as Director of the Engineering Psychology Program. He is a former Air Force officer with tours of duty at the U.S. Air Force Human Resources Laboratory and as a faculty member at the U.S. Air Force Academy. Dr. Matthews was selected as a Templeton Foundation Positive Psychology Fellow and much of his research focuses on applying Positive Psychology principles to military contexts. He is on the science advisory board for the Military Child Education Coalition, and served as President of the American Psychological Association's Division of Military Psychology from 2007 to 2008. Collectively, his research interests center on Soldier performance in combat and other dangerous contexts. Col. Patrick Sweeney: Col. Sweeney is currently serving as the Deputy Chair of the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership as well as Director of the Eisenhower Leader Development Program at the United States Military Academy, West Point, New York. He is responsible for assisting in the oversight of the Psychology, Sociology, Leadership, and Management programs at West Point and directing a graduate program in Organizational Psychology administered jointly with Columbia University. He is a Colonel with over his twenty-six years of military service. He served in tactical assignments worldwide, commanded 3rd Battalion, 320 Field Artillery, 101st Airborne Division, and served with the 101st during Operation Iraqi Freedom I. COL Sweeney holds a Ph.D. and Master of Arts in Social Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Master in Military Arts and Science from the US Army Command General Staff College. His research interests center on leader and leadership development for dangerous contexts. Current research projects include longitudinal studies exploring: trust and cohesion development, posttraumatic growth, and leadership in dangerous contexts.
© NYS DMNA Press Release:National Guard Officers Learn in Extremis Leadership Skills
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