■ Adjunct Faculty ■
Karen Higgins
Adjunct Professor
Karen Higgins
EMBA, Ph.D., Executive Management, Claremont Graduate University
M.S. Electrical Engineering, University of Idaho, Moscow
B.S. Mathematics, University of Idaho, Moscow


Professional Activities

32 year career at Naval Air Warfare Center, Weapons Division, China Lake & Pt. Mugu, CA (Retired)
  • 8+ years U.S. Navy Senior Executive Service
  • 7 ½ years as Executive Director and Director for Research & Engineering. Responsible for $1B budget, $2.8B in laboratories and facilities, 1.1 M acres of land, land and sea test ranges and over 5,000 government employees. Major technical programs at NAWC include HARM, Sidewinder, Joint Standoff Weapon and the EA-6B, AV-8B and F/A-18 aircraft.
  • 10+ years in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd line management as head of various technical departments, divisions and branches. Responsible for programs in all life cycle phases from science and technology to development, testing and in-service support
  • 4+ years: project manager for Sidewinder air-to-air missile. Responsible for full life-cycle support of multiple variants including rapid deployment of retrofit mod for Desert Storm
  • 2 ½ years: project manager for organization-wide communication system
  • 8+ years: software design/system engineer for complex real-time integrated weapons systems
  • Extensive experience in strategic planning and organizational change, including workforce shaping, restructuring, efficiency measures
  • Frequent interface with top government and industry officials, congressional representatives, contractor personnel and foreign governments/contractors
  • Extensive mentoring and motivational program leadership

Current Affiliations and Activities

President, ÉLAN Leadership Concepts. Consulting company performs assessments of organizational formal, informal and leadership systems and provides training to increase success.


  • Adaptive Management Systems
  • Project Management, A Systems Perspective to Exec MBA and PhD students
  • The Art and Science of Project Management to MBA students
  • Morality and Leadership to Executive MBA and PhD students
  • Systems Thinking


2016 Claremont Graduate University 1021 North Dartmouth Ave., Claremont, CA 91711 (909) 607-7811