Qualifications and Experience of Instructors

CPE instructors are working professionals who average over 20 years of experience in the fields in which they teach and are certified PMP®s through the Project Management Institute (PMI®). They are outstanding experts in their subject matter, but what truly sets them apart is that they are also expert instructors. Every CPE instructor undergoes intensive training to learn the best ways to present information, mentor, and create dynamic presentations that bring the classroom to life. Our talented instructors engage participants and pass their expertise on to them with practical, hands-on skills they can use right away to solve the challenges they'll face in the real world.

About Our Instructors

Get real-world solutions from expert instructors.

CPE Course instructors work full time at Virginia Tech, in high-tech companies, R&D labs and other business environments where they use the very technologies they teach. Because they've already solved the same technical problems you're likely to encounter, they are equipped to share their real-world experience and practical solutions with you. Everything you learn is practical, relevant and up to the minute.

Before teaching a single course, our instructors must pass a rigorous selection and training process to prove they can deliver superior quality training.

photo Tim Cook:
Has been a Project Management Professional since 2010. For the past seven years, Tim has lead the Government Relations Department of a mid-tier defense contractor in McLean, VA. In this position, Tim used his PMP® skills to manage congressional/legislative relations, customer relations, and strategic planning/branding linked to company budgets and policy objectives. Tim has realized that using PMP® nomenclature has helped him in business development with numerous federal, state and commercial entities that work with the technology and defense industry.

Tim has extensive operational planning and legislative experience. He came from a firm specializing in Homeland Security and Department of Defense federal marketing and lobbying. Prior to this position, Tim served for twenty years in the United States Coast Guard. In the Coast Guard, Tim was the Senate Liaison Officer for three years and a fellow on the Senate Commerce Committee for two years.

Tim's other Coast Guard assignments include Executive Assistant to the Program Executive Officer and Director of Communications for the Coast Guard's Deepwater Program. In this position Tim used PMBOK® Tools/Techniques to craft strategies for positive interactions with the executive and legislative branches, including the maritime industry, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Office of Management and Budget.

Tim graduated from the United States Coast Guard Academy with a Bachelor of Science degree in government. He holds two master's degrees: the first in public policy studies from Duke University, the second in political science from Brown University.

Tim and his family live in Maryland. He is a native of Highland Park, Illinois.

Fun Fact:
PMBOK® Tools/Techniques are best memorized & reviewed when swimming, biking & running!

photo Richard Mandarino:
Rick Mandarino Extensive experience in the field of high tech service delivery and service marketing, including 14 years in management. Responsible for achieving financial and technical objectives, a high level of customer satisfaction, and a reasonable level of employee morale. Very active in numerous quality initiatives, the most recent being ISO9000. Earned an MBA degree in Business Administration. Achieved PMI® Certification on December 18, 2001. Has taught over 75 PMP® Certification Exam Prep classes since Feb 2004. Rick has written or updated several Project Management courses including "PM Essentials" and "PM Fundamentals". He has specialized in providing instruction for organizations such as: Capital One, Cisco, Booze Allen Hamilton, Port Authority, Hampton Roads Sanitation Dept, PMI DC Chapter, and the U.S. Dept of Education.

Fun Fact:
My incentive to become PMP® Certified was provided by my newest IBM manager who let me know that in cases of layoffs, she kept her certified personnel. I was certified six months after that conversation!

photo Shankar Ananth Iyar (SAI):
Brings over three decades of teaching and industry experience in global product & project management with leading universities and multinational corporations. SAI earned his Bachelor's degree in Electronics Engineering and his Master's in Business Management from the world-renowned Indian Institute of Technology & Indian Institute of Management, respectively. He earned a second MBA from the University of Houston, where he did their Doctoral Program coursework. His continuing management education includes courses at the Wharton School, Fuqua School, London Business School and other leading institutions. While working for leading multinational corporations, he has also served many years as an adjunct faculty - most recently, at the George Washington University.

Fun Fact:
SAI serves as an executive trustee for a tax-exempt charity focused on bringing world class ophthalmic care to the needy vision impaired in India. He has also composed and recorded a dozen devotional recordings - each recording a major project. He believes 'Life is a Project' - and has delivered talks for PMIWDC on this subject.

photo David J. Williamson, PhD, PMP®, ITIL-F:
Dr. Williamson is a full-time project and program manager, a part-time college instructor, and the founding president of the PMI® Southwest Virginia Chapter. He has worked in information technology and project management for more than 25 years, and is currently the Program Manager for IT Store Support at Advance Auto Parts in Roanoke, VA. He has taught management, information systems, and project management for more than 13 years at Mary Baldwin College, Virginia Western Community College, UVA Wise, Walden University, Colorado State University-Global Campus, and Virginia Tech. He has also provided training in project management, software engineering, and software quality management to several corporations, non-profits, and government agencies. He co-founded the PMI® Southwest Virginia Chapter in 2003 and served as its first president, contributed to the PMI® OPM3® standard, and published a paper on IT project complexity, complication, and success in 2012.

Fun Fact:
His PMP® certification is valid through 2019, so he doesn't have to count PDUs for a while.