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NNSS represents at 2018, 2019 Project Leadership Institute

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Ben Simpson (pictured here, lower right) with the 2018 PLI graduates.

Nevada National Security Site (NNSS) Senior Principal Intelligence Analyst Marlis Breitkreutz, Nonproliferation Program Manager Dr. Alexander Plionis and Senior Principal Project Manager Jeff Biagini have been selected for the prestigious 2019 Project Leadership Institute (PLI). The structured year-long program assembles leaders throughout the Department of Energy (DOE) to build a network of project delivery practitioners.

Breitkreutz will represent NNSS Mission Execution, Biagini for Mission Support and Dr. Plionis for Program Integration. The program is comprised of five in-person instructional sessions, one online session and a cumulative capstone project.

“The most exciting part of this is getting to be exposed to world-class program management,” said Breitkreutz, who, along with Biagini and Dr. Plionis, will join up to 22 other DOE representatives to form the 2019 PLI cohort. “How have they succeeded? How have they failed? How have they made their project management better because of their successes and their failures? It’s exciting to be exposed to so many people who do this,” she added.

In 2018, Senior Principal Engineer Ben Simpson became the first Site employee to complete the PLI program, a partnership between the DOE and Stanford University. “Most programs outside our company are more commercial focused,” said Simpson. “This one appealed to me as a DOE link and being able to go share with people who have similar experiences.”

The PLI was created in 2014, following an analysis by the Contract and Project Management Working Group at the request of former U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz. The findings determined greater enterprise-wide perspective regarding project management was needed.

Key objectives from the course include strategic thinking and analysis, organizational and general management skills, team building and communications that can be applied to real-time DOE assignments. “The people [who are part of the PLI] are on largescale, complex projects,” said Simpson. “You build an environment and network of best practices or network sharing.”

For more information about the program, visit the PLI website.