Rich Douglas, Ph.D., PMP

About Rich

As the front page indicates, I've been working in training and development for the past three decades. But there's a bit more to tell!

Air Force Enlisted
I grew up in San Diego, California. When I turned 18 I was drawn to the professional and educational opportunities offered by the U.S. Air Force, so I enlisted. Fortunately, the Air Force made me an Education Specialist, where I was trained in training methods and administration. My first assignment was at Hanscom Air Force Base in Massachusetts. Wow! The kid from Southern California arrived in April, only to find snow on the ground! The only time we got snow growing up was on our TV set. But those were valuable times. I arrived at Hanscom a high school graduate without much more than some potential. I left three years later with four stripes and two bachelor's degrees. 

Air Force Officer
I spent the next two years in the Air Force Reserve back home, pursing my MBA from National University and working as a training manager in uniform. The Air Force then sent me to Officer Training School, where I earned my commission and became a training officer. I spent the next four years commanding a training development unit, re-designing career ladder training for the security and cryptology fields. I also received hundreds of hours of classical instructional design and delivery training, and spend just as much time in the classroom as I could! This was followed by a four-year assignment to teach Air Force ROTC at San Diego State University. (Home! Go Aztecs!) The Air Force then selected me for a series of progressively larger command assignments, first in Korea and then Nevada. Then I retired from active duty in 1996 (at the ripe old age of 36). Retired from active duty, but hardly retired, what to do next?

Human Resource Developer
Because my wife, Paula, was still on active duty, we stayed in the Las Vegas area. I took a position with Prudential Preferred Financial Services, doing financial planning for families and small businesses. But what I really did was sales! As someone who spent his career in education and training to that point, it was exhilarating to develop business and go for the sale. Still, I knew I would go back to human resource development when the right opportunity arose, and it did a year later with Corrections Corporation of America (CCA). 
At CCA, I was on two teams, both facing significant challenges. First, I was selected to be the training manager for a correctional facility we were opening in Southern Nevada. We went from an empty building to a full house of inmates in just four weeks! I set up and ran the training academy, preparing new correctional officers for their roles. After that settled down, I was asked to transfer to Washington, DC to help get a facility there through the accreditation process, which we did. These experiences, along with the next two that followed, helped consolidate my practice as a human resource developer. But when I finished my Ph.D. (in Nontraditional Higher Education from the Union Institute), my career really took off!

Human Resource Development Strategist
While I was a campus chair for the University of Phoenix, I was recruited by the Center for Systems Management as an independent consultant. But while pursuing a contract with the Department of Homeland Security (which we subsequently won), I was asked to come on board full-time. This eventually led to me working independently (with my own deal with DHS) for almost two years, when DHS asked me to come on board as a senior manager (GS-15). Throughout my nine years working with DHS--as a contractor and later as an employee--I've been able to create leadership programs, lead the design of a human capital strategy, and create a workplace performance team. Along the way, I earned the Project Management Professional designation. I also completed the requirements for a second doctoral degree, the Doctor of Social Science from the University of Leicester, where I specialized in Human Resource Development (HRD). It is the combination of these two fields--Nontraditional Higher Education and HRD--and earning doctorates in each, that combine to form my professional identity. Now it's time to begin doing the next thing!

I'm one of those students who did all of his education while working, which resulted in a mix of traditional and nontraditional experiences. If you're interested in any of these programs--or would like information regarding just about any program you're considering--please send me an e-mail. I'd love to help. My degrees and credentials (with hyperlinks to each) include