Army inducts two researchers as senior leaders, advisors

March 31, 2017

By ARL Public Affairs

Story Highlights

  • Officials welcomed Dr. Jeffrey S. Zabinski into the Senior Executive Service and Dr. Brian M. Sadler as the senior research scientist for intelligent systems in an induction ceremony March 22, 2017, during the annual Program Formulation Meeting at the Mallette Training Center at APG.

ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. (March 28, 2017) -- The U.S. Army officially recognized the promotions of two researchers into senior positions at the Army Research Laboratory.

Officials welcomed Dr. Jeffrey S. Zabinski into the Senior Executive Service and Dr. Brian M. Sadler as the senior research scientist for intelligent systems in an induction ceremony March 22, 2017, during the annual Program Formulation Meeting at the Mallette Training Center at APG.

Although civilian employees do not hold military rank, for protocol comparison purposes both promotions are equivalent to one-star general officers. The positions also merit a special flag, which the honorees unfurled with their wives during the ceremony.

"We have the distinct honor to recognize the hard work of two individuals from ARL," said acting Director Dr. Philip Perconti. "Without people, without a workforce who has a passion, not only for science and technology, but has a passion for service to this country, without those kinds of people, we wouldn't be able to deliver the technology or capability that this country expects for our nation's sons and daughters."

Dr. Jeffrey S. Zabinski

"Selection to the Senior Executive Corps to serve you, the Army and our nation is one of the greatest honors I could have ever imagined," Zabinski said in remarks at the ceremony. "I am in awe of the responsibility entrusted to me to lead, follow and serve as part of my duties to protect the United States of America."

Zabinski now leads the Weapons and Materials Research Directorate, the largest directorate in ARL.

At the ceremony, Zabinski credited his parents for giving him a strong foundation.

"It has been my family, friends, teachers, scout leaders and pastors who have helped build on that, shaping me into the person I am today," he said.

Zabinski earned his bachelor of science in chemical engineering from the University of Florida in 1982. After working in industry for several years, he earned his doctorate from Auburn University in 1990. He came to ARL from the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory, or AFRL, where he served as the chief of the Materials and Manufacturing Directorate Nonmetallic Materials Division from August 2007 to June 2011. He joined ARL in 2011 to serve as chief of the Materials and Manufacturing Science Division within WMRD.

In early 2016, he became the Army's senior research scientist for materials science.

Zabinski started as a bench level scientist focusing on surfaces, interfaces, thin films, coatings and tribology. He said his interests expanded over the years to focus on materials in extreme environments. He is also a fellow of the Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers.

"Materials science is important to national security," Zabinski said. "With the globalization of technology and the marketplace, it is challenging to steer discovery and innovation to meet our unique and demanding requirements."

Dr. Brian Sadler

Across the Army there are less than 50 senior research scientists, known as STs, who advise leadership on science matters.

Sadler, already an elected fellow with the laboratory, began serving as the Army's principal scientific leader for basic and applied research in intelligent systems Feb. 12, 2016.

As the Intelligent Systems ST, Sadler's mission is to "create innovative scientific discoveries that will provide the Army with critically needed operational breakthroughs that will enhance the maneuver of our force," according to the Army announcement at the time of his appointment.

"I'm tremendously proud of this honor," Sadler said in remarks at the ceremony.

Sadler thanked his parents who were in attendance and honored his 93-year-old father, a World War II veteran. He noted that the laboratory is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year as he and his wife are also celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary.

"We were both young engineers at Harry Diamond Laboratories and that's where we met," he said. "So I guess you could say we are truly the first family of ARL."

Sadler has contributed to several ARL Collaborative Technology Alliances, or CTAs, most recently as a technical area lead in the Micro Autonomous Systems and Technology CTA since its inception eight years ago. He has been the principle investigator for a variety of internal ARL and collaborative R&D projects, worked closely with DARPA, and mentored many ARL S&E's.

"My goal is to advance our understanding of the many components of intelligent systems, and their assembly and interaction, including artificial intelligence and autonomy," Sadler said. "We're looking at a future where the next generation of technologies will offer the ability for unmanned systems to collaborate and team with our Soldiers at and beyond current operational tempos."

His research interests have been in mobile wireless networked and autonomous systems, including sensing, communications, signal processing, and control. He has made fundamental contributions in information science, networked and multichannel systems, acoustics, optics, and mixed-signal integrated circuit architectures.

"I hope to create and drive a national research agenda at both universities and DOD laboratories that addresses the DOD S&T long range priorities on autonomous and intelligent systems, to affect warfighter outcomes and provide new offset strategies," Sadler said. Sadler earned his bachelor of science and master of science degrees from the University of Maryland, College Park, and his doctorate from the University of Virginia, Charlottesville, all in electrical engineering. He has co-authored more than 350 publications and several patents, and received several Army and professional society awards. He is also a fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.

The U.S. Army Research Laboratory, currently celebrating 25 years of excellence in Army science and technology, is part of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, which has the mission to provide innovative research, development and engineering to produce capabilities that provide decisive overmatch to the Army against the complexities of the current and future operating environments in support of the joint warfighter and the nation. RDECOM is a major subordinate command of the U.S. Army Materiel Command.


Last Update / Reviewed: March 31, 2017