Pieter DeVisser, M.A., M.Ed.

From February 2012 to February 2016, Pieter DeVisser served as the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center’s (DLIFLC) liaison to Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM), Washington and the director of the DLIFLC Language Training Detachment (LTD) there. Upon completion of his term assignment, he was presented with his second Commander's Award for Civilian Service. In his position with DLIFLC, his primary focus was on non-traditional language and culture training for the Army’s General Purposes Forces (troops not in a foreign language-dependent operational specialty).


While this training was initially focused on troops deploying to Iraq or Afghanistan, Mr. DeVisser helped make the JBLM Language & Culture Center the first Command Language Program to fully pivot the training focus to coincide with the Army’s ongoing regional alignment, generally, and I Corps’ alignment to Pacific Command, specifically. Additionally, Mr. DeVisser has advised and collaborated with language program managers and military unit commanders at all echelons throughout the Department of Defense, as well as serving as adjunct faculty for DLIFLC‘s Command Language Program Manager’s Course (ATRRS 00ZZ). Since, 2015, Mr. DeVisser has also been a research fellow for the Institute for the Study of Culture & Language (ISCL) under Norwich University Applied Research Institutes (NUARI).


Mr. DeVisser’s previous positions include serving as the Command Language Program Manager for 66th Military Intelligence Brigade in Wiesbaden, Germany. During his three and a half years there, he was responsible for the language training of hundreds of military linguists. He was instrumental in correcting the pay procedures for service members’ foreign language skills throughout Germany, assisting other language program managers throughout Europe, and helping the DLIFLC to establish its first LTD in Europe. The technology integration he achieved at the 66th MIB Language Learning Center was used as a model for that and later LTDs established throughout Europe. Upon his departure from that position, Mr. DeVisser was presented his first Commander's Award for Civilian Service.


From early 2000 to early 2004, Mr. DeVisser served honorably in the US Army as an Intelligence Analyst and Noncommissioned Officer, deploying for eight months in support of what eventually became Operation Iraqi Freedom. After his honorable discharge from the Army, Mr. DeVisser continued to directly support the military by managing operations responsible for providing contract linguists to Intelligence operations throughout Europe. Mr. DeVisser earned his M.Ed. in Instructional Design in December of 2017, as well as a Masters Certificate in Instructional Technology Design in August of 2016g, and an M.A. in Applied Linguistic in May 2015, all from the University of Massachusetts Boston. As an undergrad, he graduated magna cum laude from Christ College, Valparaiso University in 1998 with a B.A. in German & English Literature. 

Robert Greene Sands, PhD

Robert R. Greene Sands, PhD is an anthropologist and cross-cultural learning expert.  Over the last 30 years, he has explored, researched, written on and produced learning programs on the nature of cross-cultural interactions across a diversity of populations and environments to include military, business, international development and crisis response and the application of cultural studies to such venues as sport.   


Sands prior experience includes positions at Air University and Air Force Culture and Language Center, Defense Intelligence Agency, and currently as Director and Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for the Study of Culture and Language at Norwich University and adjunct professor in the College of Graduate and Continuing Studies Program.   He has also served as cultural resource and environmental manager for Edwards Air Force Base and was an archaeologist for the United States Forest Service.


Dr. Sands is one of the foremost experts in cross-cultural competence (3C) and culture-general and has worked closely with the several DoD organizations to develop and deliver innovative blended learning programs in culture and language.  Several iterations of his courseware have been utilized by different Services, Special Operations Forces, US Army, US Air Force, US Marines, and Foreign Area Officers, among others and Sands developed the first-ever Massive Open Online Course in cross-cultural competence, Operational Culture: Thinking Differently about Behavior in the Human Domain which he offers through OpenLearning.


Sands’ research and writing on the various aspects of culture and language is represented in seven books (with one in press), numerous journal and book chapters.  He is also a preeminent speaker and lecturer and is often delivering addresses to various organizations and learning institutions on his research and experience, to include TEDx and other television and video appearances.  His most recent research and writing features a re-envisioning of the Special Forces.  Sands founded and is editor of the Journal for Culture, Language and International Security. 


Sands experience in cross-cultural learning has been honed in developing products and courses for the crucible of conflict, for uncertain and risk-filled environments and for a variety of mission and operational needs.  This same experience and development applies to help promote cross-cultural competence in culture and language for an array of need, business leaders and overseas employees, for coaches who recruit and work with foreign born athletes, for NGOs and agencies that work in development and crisis response. 

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