Program Staff

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Mr. Van W. Noah, P.E.
Program Director, LCELP
Institute for Defense and Business

Van Noah joined the Institute for Defense and Business (IDB) as a Program Director in the fall of 2005. He graduated from the LOGTECH MBA (now known as IU-IDB MBA) as a private sector participant in 2004 and now leads a team that manages that program, the LOGTECH Advanced Course, and the Life Cycle Executive Leadership Program for the Institute of Defense and Business. He continues to help develop new and innovative education programs for the IDB’s clients.

Van came to the IDB from an engineering and management career with the Michael Baker Corporation managing the North Carolina offices of the corporation responsible for building the FedEx Mid-Atlantic hub in Greensboro and expanding operations in the state. Prior to joining Michael Baker Corporation, he was the engineer for the North Carolina Global TransPark, leading the planning, permitting, and construction of that global intermodal facility for the State of North Carolina. He consulted environmental and engineering projects in the private sector and with the Department of Defense following ten years of active duty service in the US Army.

During his military career, Van served in the Republic of Korea, starting as a Platoon Leader and working his way up to Battalion S4 before being selected to command a company in the 44th Engineer Battalion (Combat Heavy). After the Engineer Officer Advanced Course, he reported to the 307th Engineer Battalion (Airborne) in the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, where he served in various staff positions including Assistant Division Engineer before obtaining his second company command. Following Command and Service Staff School at Fort Leavenworth, he served as a Brigade Engineer for the 501st Military Intelligence Brigade in Seoul, Korea. He left the military for a civilian career in 1992 as a Major.

Van has a Bachelor’s in Science in Civil Engineering from the Virginia Military Institute and a Master’s in Business Administration from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business with a LOGTECH MBA Certificate from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Kenan-Flagler Business School. He is also a registered Professional Engineer.


WhybarkC_lores.jpgDr. D. Clay Whybark
Senior Faculty Advisor, LCELP
Macon D. Patton Distinguished Professor of Operations, Technology and Innovation Management, Kenan-Flagler Business School, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Clay Whybark is Macon G. Patton Distinguished Professor Emeritus at the University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler School of Business.  International manufacturing practices, supply chain management and manufacturing planning and control systems are among his areas of expertise.

His industrial experience was with the Boeing Company and Douglas Aircraft.  He has served as a consultant to a number of corporate and governmental organizations in various parts of the world.

Dr. Whybark has held positions at universities in New Zealand, Switzerland, China, Hong Kong, Peru, and Chile as well as Indiana, Purdue, Harvard, Arizona State, and Stanford in the United States.  He has taught in executive education and presented seminars, some in Spanish, throughout the world.  He is also a fellow and past president of the International Society for Inventory Research as well as a fellow and distinguished global leader of the Pan Pacific Business Association.

The author of more than 200 papers and business cases (two of which won European POM case-of-the-year awards) in the areas of operations and logistics management.  Dr. Whybark is the author or co-author of several books, including Why ERP?, Manufacturing Planning and Control Systems for Supply Chain Management, and Global Manufacturing Practices.


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Ms. Lara B. Taylor
Program Associate
Institute for Defense and Business

Lara Taylor joined the IDB as a program associate in December 2015. In this role, she is responsible for supporting the Depot & Arsenal Executive Leadership Program (DAELP) and Life Cycle Executive Leadership Program (LCELP) by assisting with the design, marketing, planning, and delivery of each.

Lara earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology with a minor in history from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2014. During her undergraduate career, she was a student leader and vocal advocate for students in underrepresented groups. That advocacy gained her a strong reputation on campus and led to her selection for the 2014-15 Chancellor’s Fellowship at UNC.

As a Chancellor’s Fellow, Lara focused her work on student veterans. Her efforts led to the establishment of a full-time position for a student veteran assistance coordinator, approval for a veteran’s center, and an application fee waiver for students who self-identify as military-affiliated. During this time, Lara also served as the Campus Program Director for UNC’s inaugural year of the Warrior-Scholar Project – an intensive academic reorientation program for enlisted servicemembers and veterans. In this position, she was responsible for all program planning and management as well as the delivery of the one-week in-residence program.

Lara is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force and currently serves her community as a Guardian ad Litem – a court-appointed special advocate for abused and neglected children – in Orange and Chatham counties.

Institute for Defense & Business
1250 Environ WayChapel HillNorth Carolina 27517 USA
Telephone: (919) 969-8008 Fax: (919) 969-6792