Dr. Jay Davis

Posted on by Dave Oliver

I met Dr. Jay Davis when he left his job running his accelerator laboratory at Lawrence Livermore (and his occasional stints as a world-roving United Nations nuclear weapons inspector) to come to the Pentagon to become the first Director of the several thousand-person Defense Threat Reduction Agency. 

When I was first mentoring young scientists and engineers trembling on the verge of sampling the poisoned chalice of management, I would encourage them to read military history.  To me, such histories provide a fine source of case studies of decision making in circumstances of uncertain data, resources, and boundaries.  I still believe that.  Dave Oliver has gone me one better however.  His personal stories show how one must involve one’s values in building a team that performs well not just technically but at high ethical and interpersonal standards, insuring its long term success.  In addition, the stories are often hilarious, pulling one through at a fabulous pace.  I recommend this great read for anyone building, or rebuilding, a team for high quality performance.”

Jay Davis


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