Dennis D. McDonald, Ph.D.

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Overview 

  • Applies an analytical approach to understanding client, user, and data requirements.
  • 25+ years of project planning, business development, consulting, and project and program management experience.
  • Management and executive positions held within consulting, IT strategy, systems integration, and electronic publishing companies.
  • Communication and content experience includes business and technical documentation, marketing collateral, white papers, technical & business proposals, blog posts, reviews, podcasting, public speaking.
  • Experience with quick start projects as well as highly structured planning and management approaches.

Experience summary

  • Experience with financial, image, geographic, unstructured, document, medical, indexing, statistical, bibliographic, and manufacturing data and metadata.
  • Project work includes assessments and strategy development, data governance, statistical research and analysis, managing and working as part of remote teams (same and different time zones), financial and survey data analysis, technical proposal editing, detailed project planning and costing, enterprise level database and system development project management (including ETL work), and PMO setup and operation.
  • Clients include government agencies (e.g., VA, EPA, NIH, NLM), associations, research (e.g., National Academy of Engineering), foreign development (e.g., World Bank), software and computer hardware, finance & insurance (e.g., AIG), public utilities (e.g., NiSource), outsourcing, truck & auto manufacturing (e.g., Ford), medical equipment (e.g., GE), libraries, and electronic publishing.
  • Client work has supported database conversion and construction, IT departments, marketing & sales, engineering, service & repair, system testing, project management organizations, customer support and callcenter operations, manufacturing and assembly line operations, and survey research.

Education  

  • MLS & Ph.D., Library & Information Science, Univ. of Maryland. Ph.D. Dissertation: Mathematical Modeling of Journal Selection Decisions by Cancer Researchers and Astrophysicists.
  • BA, Psychology, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio.

Independent Consultant, Alexandria, Virginia, August 2005 – Present

Applies project management and research experience to help organizations improve how they manage and communicate using data and technology. Project work includes:

  • Development of data- and language-based approaches to data governance (proprietary).
  • Editorial and writing support for large international development proposals (University Research Co.)
  • System testing data program governance analysis (Edaptive Systems for CMS/Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services). Analysis of systems, business processes, and resources associated with ACA system test data support for both manual and automated testing.
  • Web based municipal data portals for financial, safety, health, & tax data (Balefire Global and Socrata).
  • Provide program and knowledge management support for pharmaceutical insurance system and data center consolidation (Catalyst Rx). Design, set up, and operate SharePoint based PMO unit for corporate merger of pharmaceutical benefits systems and consolidation of multiple data centers.
  • Provide R&D program collaboration support for large Federal agency (US EPA). Researched requirements for and designed a collaboration/knowledge sharing program to improve communication and coordination across multiple units and strategic initiatives of EPA’s national R&D organizations.
  • Developed collaboration strategy and metrics definition for worldwide SharePoint roll-out and adoption (World Bank). Researched requirements for and designed a metrics-driven program to promote adoption and use of SharePoint as a collaboration tool across all World Bank operating units worldwide.
  • Created communication plan, metrics, and social media for GI Bill benefits (U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs). Designed social media based communication strategy to promote public awareness of changes to GI Bill. Developed social media metrics dashboard reporting process to track mentions and sentiment regarding GI Bill. Identified potential statistical limitations of social media metrics when compared with more traditional population metrics.
  • Developed enterprise collaboration software adoption strategy and assessment (Jive Software).
  • Developed project & program management services using SharePoint and Office 365. Helped develop and test a cloud based SharePoint collaboration portal for use by corporate PMOs in project and program management based on PMBOK compatible process definitions (SoftPMO.com).
  • Researched use of social media as a sales management tool (Oracle and Social Media Today).
  • Supported social media and web promotion of engineering and STEM careers (National Academy of Engineering).
  • Created social media strategies for professional and trade associations (FAIR Institute and ASHP).
  • Developed voice response technology strategy for customer service (U.S and Canadian energy utilities).
  • Developed management strategy for disaster response “grey literature” (National Library of Medicine). Designed program to identify, quantify, manage, and distribute information about unpublished public and private data sources relevant to disaster and emergency response.

VP & Co-Owner, Technology Consulting Associates, Atlanta, GA, July 1999 - July 2005

Company management, administration, business development, financial P&L control for 80-person consulting company. Managed large systems integration and short term IT strategy and assessment initiatives including:

  • Managed 20-person business unit focusing on project support and business development targeting IT department process improvement and support for IT department merger and acquisition change management. Hired, trained, mentored, reviewed, discharged staff. Upgraded prospecting and sales processes. Trained staff in cold calling. Managed prospecting and business development.
  • Built and managed program management office (PMO) supporting a multi-state energy utility’s 18-month, 300-person, $30M+ customer system database and software consolidation program. Responsibilities included assessment of source and target database size, structure, and transformation complexity followed by staff recruitment and hiring, financial oversight and earned value reporting, issue tracking and resolution, meeting coordination and reporting, master schedule development and maintenance, resource estimation and tracking, website maintenance, and oversight of weekend “dry runs” leading up to successful changeover involving the custom developed ETL infrastructure.
  • Managed 6-month enterprise wide IT service cost analysis and application portfolio assessment, retirement, and consolidation strategy for a multi-state energy conglomerate. Constructed inventory of 800+ enterprise software applications, assessed technical and business performance of applications, constructed master plan to consolidate portfolio and support infrastructure. Developed detailed cost analysis relating all IT costs to assess alignment of IT support for enterprise priorities.

Senior Principal, Technology Solutions Company (TSC), Chicago, IL, 1997 – 1999

Managed knowledge management, I.T. strategy, and customer service consulting, including:

  • Adapted and supported Lotus Notes for IT strategy consulting business development.
  • Conducted customer relationship management system planning and requirements assessment for a multinational insurance firm using Hong Kong and China markets as models. Analyzed business and technical requirements using MS Access and a requirements traceability matrix model.
  • Performed enterprise IT cost analysis & IT strategy process management for insurance firms. Developed a metrics based approach to project portfolio selection and management.

Vice President, Information Products, Reed Elsevier/Online Computer Systems, Germantown, MD, 1988 - 1996

Managed development and production of packaged and networked database products including:

  • Managed 15-person business unit responsible for development, production, updating, and support of electronic database products using proprietary indexing, user interface, and local area network technologies. Managed dedicated computer operation supporting software development, data conversion, and database production. Managed estimating and contracting for data conversion services supporting indexing of images, engineering documents, bibliographic data, encyclopedia entries, and multimedia. Clients included General Electric Appliances, Whirlpool, Rockwell Automotive, General Electric Medical Systems, PACCAR, Library of Congress, British Library, and Ford.

Tools

  • MS Project, BaseCamp, and Artemis for project planning and tracking; MS Access for report generation, earned value reporting, project issue management and review, and lead tracking; Microsoft Office and Office 365; SharePoint for knowledge management, project support, and project collaboration; Google Drive and Google Docs for intranet support and collaboration; Squarespace 5 & 7 for websites; Socrata for open data portal, data analytics, and API development.

Analytics

  • Applied statistical techniques to quantify size and complexity of data and metadata associated with data conversion, construction, and consolidation projects.
  • Designed and managed English and non-English statistical surveys and quantitative assessments of business process transactions, questionnaire surveys of scientists (e.g., cancer researchers and astrophysicists), engineers, members of the public, teachers, librarians, publishers, marketing professional, computer science department staff, and nonprofit organizations.
  • Designed segmented probability samples, managed coding and data quality control operations, interpreted statistics about population characteristics, data usage, and value/utility estimates of various information resources.

Selected white papers, blog posts, reports

Volunteering

  • Alexandria Film Festival, 2015-present. Responsibilities include grant proposal development, film reviewing, web content development, and event photography. 

Civic engagement

  • 2017: Completed City of Alexandria's 9-week "Citizens Academy" course on internal operation of city government.