Strategic Project Management and Industrial Development


Strategic projects are driven by business strategy and capital investment planning. They are often multi-year efforts that begin with concept and scope development. The risk associated with the capital investment demands quality feasibility analysis and comprehensive budget estimates. Successful projects also require effective project organization and organizational consensus building.

Dennis Schrader has a track record of organizing and completing high risk, complicated projects. He has experience in building effective teams that deliver varied projects in facilities design and construction, technology, and business operations.

If you have significant capital investment or equity in a project DRS International will ensure you attain a successful outcome.

Case Study: University of Maryland Medical Center Transformation

Health Care

The Executive Team transformed the Medical Center from a worn out state government operation in 1984 with a capital deficit of $500M to a nationally recognized private institution that attracted the best Doctors, Nurses, and Technologists by 2003.

Challenge, Strategy, and ResultsThe spiral strategy iteratively built plant capacity to grow revenues, increase the debt capacity to issue bonds, raise money through philanthropy, and hire nationally respected clinicians who would then drive multiple spirals of revenue growth and plant improvement.

Executive leadership, set direction, vision, master planning, and  re-development of 3.2 million sq. ft. facility and over $500 million dollars of capital investments in facilities, equipment, and technology to include expansion to 5 hospital sites and several primary and specialty care sites throughout Central Maryland.

Completed four major building projects:

Shock Trauma Center        1989 ($45M)        189,000 sq. ft.

Gudelsky Building               1994 ($170M)      260,000 sq. ft.

Schaeffer Rehab Center     1996 ($30M)        150,000 sq. ft.

Weinberg Building                2003 ($200M)     380,000 sq. ft.  

Case Study: Effective Project Management Leverages Significant Y2K Investments

Health Care Technology

We planned and implemented a $52M Y2K compliance program for $35M with no negative events and significantly improved technology capabilities. The additional $17M was later invested in targeted clinical information systems to address critical patient safety priorities.

Challenge, Strategy, and Results

The nation faced a significant uncertain risk from the Y2K threat. It became a national business continuity and supply chain issue for all business and government. There was significant risk to cost over-runs and spending money simply because it was available. Consultants were brought into organizations by the hundreds on short notice with little ability to provide effective due diligence and oversight of their efforts. The challenge was to take action and provide due diligence to avoid wasting resources. The initial gross estimate for the program was $52M. The Medical Center reserved this level of capital. The University of Maryland Medical System strategy was to invest to mitigate Y2K while meeting future technology requirements.

We organized an internal VP led program management team and closely managed the scope development and planning for each project. The results were reported to Senior Executive leadership on a weekly basis for over a year throughout 1999.

We organized a command center that was operational throughout the December 31 activities. The year 2000 came and went with no significant issues from our systems. We did lose a legacy voice mail system on January 1, 2000 which showed that the threat was real. Fortunately we had replaced the system prior to December 31, 1999. 

Case Study: Priority Military Construction Projects Contribute to European Theatre Readiness


The complex and equipment intensive Sigonella Communications Station was completed on time to meet the mission critical requirement to transfer the Communications operations from Nea Makri, Greece in 1984.

 Challenge, Strategy, and Results

In 1982, during the latter stages of the Cold War, NATO was building up its key Mediterranean Sigonella Navy Air Base in Sicily to support Southern European Operations and the Logistics to the Middle East to include the Lebanon operation. The rapid build-up required significant increases in design and construction workload with short timelines. The major project design process was managed in Madrid, Spain for the Mediterranean region. There were 60-100 major projects in process to include a critical expansion and upgrade of the Navy Communications Station at Sigonella Air Base, initial support facilities for the Ground Launched Cruise Missiles operation at Comiso Air Base, airfield facility upgrades, HC-4 helicopter support facilities, new barracks and dining facilities, and a major overhaul of Base utilities. The pipeline for additional Resident Engineers to manage the workload was back-end loaded so the existing team of three officers including myself carried the entire load. By 1984, Dennis Schrader was responsible for 27 projects at various stages in the process.