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DC SPIN Program Announcements

Updated August 6th 2015 10:00 PM


Wednesday, September 2nd
"12 Questio​​ns Wildly Successful Companies Answer Every Day"

"12 Questio​​ns Wildly Successful Companies Answer Every Day" helps business leaders learn to adopt, reinforce and scale agile values, methods, and techniques by taking on a dozen key questions they need to thrive in today’s conflicted environment.

By attending the presentation of “12 Questions,” participants will understand how to embrace an effective strategy for achieving and sustaining behavioral change in their organization that leads to a culture of operational greatness.  Drawing upon decades of experience as a world-class musician-turned-successful software engineering entrepreneur, presenter Jeff Dalton helps organizations understand what it takes to strengthen their agile approach so that it can scale companywide. 

Participants will take away tips for improving performance, predictability, collaboration and quality with agile values, methods and techniques, including how to:
  • Bring greater clarity and strength to Scrum ceremonies
  • Drive quality and performance improvement across the board
  • Strengthen the understanding, adoption, and continuous improvement of the agile values and behaviors in your organization
  • Reassure clients that you have a plan for scaling agile in a way that can help them get improved results
  • Get more out of your investment in agile and other performance improvement frameworks

September Speaker

Jeff Dalton, President of Broadsword

Jeff Dalton is President of Broadsword, a different kind of performance innovation firm that helps engineering and software organizations get better at what they are already doing.  He is a Certified Lead Appraiser, CMMI Instructor, ScrumMaster and author of “agileCMMI,” Broadsword’s leading methodology for incremental and iterative process improvement.

Jeff has been the Keynote Speaker at numerous conferences including the International Software and Engineering Conference in Lima, Peru, the PMI Great Lakes 2013 Symposium, the 2014 QUEST Conference and Expo, the SEPG Conference 2014, and the CMMI Global Congress 2015, with a scheduled Keynote presentation at the PMI Chicago Symposium 2015 in October.  Jeff has appeared multiple times at Agile Development West, Better Software, Agile Processes and Tools, AgileDC, and at Software Process Improvement Network (SPIN) and Agile Leadership Network (ALN) meetups throughout North America.

Jeff served as the Chairman of the Partner Advisory Board at the Software Engineering Institute (SEI) and CMMI Institute from 2011-2014 during their transition period.  He has been president of Great Lakes Software Process Improvement Network, and is a recipient of the prestigious Software Engineering Institute’s SEI Member Award for Outstanding Representative for his work uniting the Agile and CMMI communities through his popular blog “Ask the CMMI Appraiser.” Having grown up as a performer in a travelling family band, Jeff holds degrees in Music and Computer Science and builds experimental airplanes in his spare time.

Jeff can be reached at​

Wednesday, August 5th
"The New School of QA: Keeping Customers Happy!"

According to 1st Financial Training Services, "96 percent of unhappy customers don't complain [about customer service]; however 91 percent of those will simply leave and never come back."


That's disheartening.


Fortunately, QA can play a major role in ensuring that all of your customers are happy with the services and solutions you provide. But you knew that...right??


So HOW do you keep your customers happy? How does QA play a role in improving customer satisfaction? What does it mean to be the "new school of QA"? This presentation will focus on how to set up an effective quality program and provide best practices for practitioners to play an integral role in developing lasting and positive customer relationships - both internal and external. The presentation will be delivered in an informal manner and will include lessons learned and examples from a real world application.


Questions and discussions will be considered a welcome part of the presentation.

August Speaker

Beth Leonard

Ms. Beth Leonard has over 19 years of quality assurance and process improvement experience across the government contracting industry. She is an ITIL Expert, and has numerous certifications including ITIL Expert - Trainer - and Proctor, ISO Auditor, Black Belt Six Sigma, and PMP, and has strong experience in CMMI-DEV and CMMI-SVC. In conjunction, she has previously held positions in the areas of program/project management, security management, service management (operations/service desk), and all support functions within the software and service development lifecycle. Her depth and breadth of knowledge enables her to implement realistic best practices not only at the project level, but across organizations for management and corporate support.


Beth has implemented and maintained customer satisfaction programs, organizational metrics programs based on Six Sigma, as well as corporate and project level quality and process programs based on best practices from ISO, ITIL, PMPBOK, and the CMMI frameworks. Recently, Beth prepared her previous company DMI for achieving a FedRAMP certification - a required security management certification for government cloud solutions. Beth has had numerous successful appraisals for both CMMI for Services and CMMI for Development as well as multiple ISO implementations. Most recently achieving a truly integrated management system ISO certification for quality (ISO 9001), service (ISO 20000), and information security management (ISO 27001) - a first in the world.


Wednesday, June 3, 2015
(Rescheduled from January & March)

Building an “Automated Testing Center of Excellence (ATCE)”

IDT’s software engineers have set up an “Automated Testing Center of Excellence (ATCE)” environment.  Developers and testers both can take advantage of this environment, whether it’s used for development testing or system testing. This presentation discusses a case study of a successful ATCE implementation, including the use of Virtual Test Environments, Automated Test and Re-Test (ATRT) solutions, and continuous integration.

June Speaker
Elfriede Dustin
Technical Director
Innovative Defense Technologies (IDT)

Elfriede Dustin is a Technical Director at Innovative Defense Technologies (IDT) in Arlington, Virginia. She has contributed to the development of ATRT: Test Manager from its inception. You can reach Elfriede via email,(, Twitter ( (@ElfriedeDustin),or  on LinkedIn.

Wednesday April 1, 2015
Socialized Requirements

When we talk about Analysis, we usually think about the two areas of a software development project where Analysts are “front and center:” Requirements Elicitation and Documentation.  In projects using either waterfall or agile approaches we gather requirements through elicitation and then lock in those requirements with the documentation. Using an iterative approach, we do the same, just more than once, preferably in  smaller time frames. When that is complete, the Analyst is done and can move on to the next project. Development starts and because everything is approved and locked down, we don’t need the Analyst, right?

Well, not exactly…

Two decades of experience shows there is a fundamental change that is needed.  The requirements have to be socialized to draw disparate concepts and personalities together in order to create a social community within the team and it is that social community most importantly the stakeholder that ensures quality outcomes on a project.

April Speakers
 Pete Carroll Enterprise Sales and Solutions
Cary Bryczek Solutions Architect

Pete Carroll has been involved with the ALM tool vendor industry for the last twenty years.  His range of experience spans tools such as DOORS, RTM, Req Pro, Quality Center, and Clearcase.  His career has been focused in the DoD and Aerospace sectors.

Cary Bryczek

With more than two decades of process and systems engineering work in commercial and defense sectors, Cary Bryczek has developed a sharp eye for how organizations get mired with inefficiencies, cross-purposes and miscommunication — and how they can retool for a sleeker, smoother, strategically focused organization. As a solutions architect she helps organizations set priorities and create innovative processes using modern tools and data architectures to help them compete in the marketplace or meet mission objectives.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015
This will replace the May DC SPIN meeting. We will have a speaker from the SATURN 2015 Conference and will be colocated with it. More information to come soon.