New Place, Familiar Face: Dalal Assumes Chief of Staff Role
After two years as the director of the U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command's (USAMRDC) Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP), Col. Stephen Dalal was considering retirement this summer. Then he got a call from Brigadier General Michael Talley, Commanding General of the USAMRDC and Fort Detrick.
"The general called and said I could use your help," says Dalal, who assumed the role of USAMRDC Chief of Staff earlier this month. "And I said 'okay, sir,' and I pulled my paperwork."
Dalal's new role comes amidst a flurry of other personnel activity on Post; including – among other changes – the assignment of new USAMRDC Command Sergeant Major Victor Laragione and the assignment of Col. John Melton as incoming Deputy Commanding Officer. Dalal says partnering with Melton will be one of the many keys to success in his new role, with the latter likely taking control of special staff functions for the time being; though specific goals for each position will likely be defined more clearly over the course of the next month.
All told, Dalal has spent three years combined at USAMRDC, previously serving as Commander of the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Development Activity (USAMMDA) in addition to the aforementioned leadership role at CDMRP. He holds a Masters of Strategic Studies degree from the Air War College, and further touts both a Masters of Public Health degree from the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences (USUHS) and a Bachelor of Science degree from Iowa State University. Dalal replaces Col. Deborah Whitmer, who was recently selected by the Office of the Surgeon General for an assignment in Falls Church, Virginia.
Now, back in the fold after briefly contemplating retirement, Dalal is energized as he begins his new role – eager to both assess the myriad responsibilities of the position, while also putting his own stamp on the command.
"I want to help as much as I can," says Dalal. "My goal is to empower others. I want to empower others in this role as much as possible."