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DOD's Comptroller Recognizes NPS DRMI Director With Prestigious Award

DOD's Comptroller Recognizes NPS DRMI Director With Prestigious Award

By Javier Chagoya, Khaboshi Imbukwa and Jeanine Garcia

NPS Professor Natalie Webb has again proven to be one of the DOD's most accomplished civil servants in the realm of resource management.

As Executive Director for the university's Defense Resources Management Institute (DRMI), Webb has delivered a steady hand to the institute's operations, and earned the respect of her own world-renown faculty along with that of Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller) The Honorable Mike McCord. Recently, McCord recognized Webb's consistent and sustained accomplishments by awarding her the Office of the Secretary of Defense Award for Outstanding Achievement.

"One of the things we do well at DRMI is creating relationships between defense departments around the world," explained Webb. "We've presented our management resources programs to over 35,000 financial and comptroller professionals to help them find solutions and plan effectively for a sound strategic plan."

Webb leads her faculty team by seeking their input into solutions that will improve the promotion and delivery of DRMI's unique educational product to DOD and U.S. international military partners and defense senior civilians.

"Dr. Webb is very approachable in how we can package coursework that is not only compliant with the policy guidance council standards, but also always looking forward to exceed those quality benchmarks as well," said DRMI Senior Lecturer Luis Morales.

Webb and DRMI faculty have made significant gains toward the development and implementation of McCord's Financial Workforce Development program, one of his first-tier initiatives for the institute. The campaign has now raised the professional standards of over 50,000 financial managers across the Department of Defense.

"For example, we teach this particular course at annual business conferences where 1,000 to 2,000 people from the DOD come to earn their certification for their development program. In one instance, I had a Coast Guardsman tell me that the economics lecture I gave about the environment in which defense decisions were made, was very helpful to him in moving forward in resource allocation," said Webb.

While Webb has spent decades teaching others the principles of economics, the fact of dealing with constrained resources is not lost on her. She has optimized and streamlined her own team's teaching schedule to continue running DRMI's slate of quality programs.

"We were going through periods of fiscal uncertainty and Dr. Webb weathered through those tough times. She has also had to contend with reduced staffing," said DRMI Lecturer, retired Marine Corps Col. Mitch McCarthy. "I'm sure Secretary McCord also appreciated her, and the DRMI organization's contributions to DOD comptroller and financial management communities in bringing them up to standards."

In the end, the understated Webb said she was shocked about getting the award, and said she had no idea it was coming.

"It was certainly nice to be recognized, but when you're working with people at that level and caliber of excellence, it really is a DRMI team effort," added Webb.

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Today@NPS showcases some of the speakers, conferences, experiments, lectures, and other events that take place at the Naval Postgraduate School on a daily basis. If you would like more information about any of the highlighted activities please contact the public affairs office at pao@nps.edu.

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April 2017

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