As is the case with many project managers, Gerald Leonard, a leader for the Baltimore-Washington, D.C. chapter of MPUG, followed a circuitous path to project management.
Gerald grew up in Lakeland, FL, and then attended Central State University in Ohio for a bachelor’s degree in music and the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music for a master’s in Music as a classical bassist. During graduate school he performed with the Schools Orchestra at Carnegie Hall and studied with the principal composer and bassist of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. Gerald lived in New York City working as a professional bassist, while continuing his studies under David Walters, principal bassist for the NBC Symphony under Toscanini. Gerald has also worked in the ministry for the New York City Church of Christ as a full time minister and musician.
After leaving the ministry to pursue his music career, Gerald was introduced to the world of network computing and project management. During the last 12 years, he’s worked as an IT and PM consultant and has earned his PMP, MCSE, and CQIA credentials. He currently works as planning and programs manager for international law firm WilmerHale. He’s married and has two teenagers.
Here Gerald answers three questions…
What do you like best about attending MPUG chapter meetings?
The opportunity to network and learn form others who have been using Microsoft Project in different ways than I use the tool or they have created a new way to capture additional information that I never considered collecting in the tool.
What book are you reading right now that other project managers might be interested in — and why?
Critical Chain, a business novel by Eliyahu M. Goldratt, in which the author applies the Theory of Constraints, a method for achieving on-going improvement, which he introduced in his book, The Goal. Entertaining and useful brain food for project managers.
What’s the biggest work challenge you face this year?
Training and developing a team of project managers and helping each one mature and obtain their PMP certification.