STEM Woman Leader of the Day- Lani Hay (Lanmark Technology Inc.)
Submitted by Tommy Cornelis on August 13, 2012
Lani Hay is founder, President, and CEO of Lanmark Technology (LMT) Inc. Named one of Fortune Magazine’s Most Powerful Women Entrepreneurs, Ms. Hay has grown LMT from a one-woman consulting firm to a multi-million dollar enterprise. Prior to forming LMT, she honorably served in the United States Navy as an Intelligence Officer and a Naval Aviation Observer. She holds a BS in Mathematics from the United States Naval Academy, an MBA from the College of William and Mary's Mason School of Business, and a Master’s Certificate in Government Contracting from George Washington University
Why do you believe STEM Education and Workforce are important to our nation?
In order to ensure and maintain our nation’s global presence as a leader in innovation, we need to fully support and fund STEM education throughout all levels of education. A strong education in STEM will promise our nation’s workforce is properly staffed with the technical and intellectual minds we need as the world moves towards an ever increasing synthesis of technology into our daily lives.
What traits do senior leaders need to effectively support and advance STEM today?
A senior leader needs to be progressive, inclusive and forward thinking to effectively support and advance STEM. A progressive mindset is flexible and welcomes new ideas. Additionally, a strong basis in morality is necessary to guide the increasingly complex and ambiguous areas that bridge scientific, technology and medical research.
What principles do you, as a leader apply to your professional and personal life to advance the STEM cause?
My personal philosophy is to “Honor Diversity”. I believe that diversity of perspective, experience, and opinion is always a good thing. It is important to level the playing field so opportunities exist for people from diverse backgrounds have access to the education needed to pursue a career in STEM. A baseline education in STEM is critical to providing the problem solving and critical thinking skills that are needed to navigate our increasingly complex world.
What can we do to assure more women leaders in STEM?
Simply by exposing young girls to professional women who have built their careers in STEM and to the vast array of interesting careers in STEM, we can spark an early interest in STEM. The next step is to encourage young girls to consider pursuing studies in STEM. We need to ensure that the future generations of young girls are offered the opportunity to connect with the fundamental ideas and principals of STEM to form a solid foundation that will carry them the rest of their lives.
Of what one initiative you are most proud?
LMT provides cutting-edge, mission-support technology and consulting solutions aligned with our national security interests. The innovative technology and business processes that LMT has developed and implemented have not only resulted in tax payer savings, but more importantly have saved the lives of our military service members serving in harm’s way. LMT works closely with the Joint Improvised Explosive Defeat Organization (JIEDDO) supplying subject matter experts who fulfill a variety of technical roles to include establishing JIEDDO’s Counter-IED (Improvised Explosive Devices) Operations Research Systems Analysts, OCONUS (Outside the Contiguous United States) ORSA Program. An ORSA is a science professional who produces analytic products to underpin decisions by Commanders, and to enable solutions of varied and complex strategic, operational, tactical, and managerial issues. They provide Commanders an independent evaluation and trending of key issues based on factual current and historical events. Each OCONUS ORSA is deeply embedded into a U.S. military or coalition unit, or headquarters’ staff in Afghanistan, to become an integrated part of the commanders or units’ support through qualitative and quantitative operational assessments.