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Division Directors

Pictured is Marlesa Adams, division director for Virginia Tech's Innovation Campus and DC Metro Area

Marlesa Adams 
Innovation Campus and D.C. Metro Area

Marlesa has more than 10 years of experience in leadership consultation and organizational development, talent acquisition, and employee relations. 

She previously served at Georgetown University as university director of human resources, organizational development. Earlier, she was a consultant for MEA Consulting Group. In addition, Marlesa has served in several higher education administrative and chief of staff roles, including chief of staff to the vice president for development and alumni relations at George Washington University and director of administration for the Harvard University Office of the Vice President for Public Affairs and Communications.

She has a B.S. in business administration from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and an M.S. in training and organizational development from Lesley University.

Following an initial focus on the Innovation Campus, she will work with other HR directors, local HR practitioners, and university leadership to build and reinforce an HR community of practices to support Virginia Tech’s presence in the D.C. metro area. 

Greg Beecher
Student Affairs

Greg has more than 27 years of experience in higher education, human resource management, and consulting for nonprofit organizations.

He holds a B.S. in communication and psychology from Indiana Wesleyan University, an M.A. in organizational and professional communication development from Ball State University, and a Ph.D. in industrial organizational psychology from Grand Canyon University. He possesses SPHR and SHRM-SCP human resource certifications and is certified to facilitate and interpret various assessment tools on change, conflict, emotional intelligence, and personalities.

Greg is powered by the belief that every individual is gifted with talents and purpose. He strives to create learning opportunities that help to strategically connect individuals, teams, and organizations to a meaningful purpose. He is passionate about developing people and communication practices that exceed individual and organizational goals. 

Greg is a husband, father to four amazing kids, dog lover, arts lover, educator, and lifelong learner who desires to develop communities.

Stephanie Brown
College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

Stephanie Brown joined Virginia Tech as a seasoned human resource professional, with broad human resources leadership experience, having worked in the field since 1999.

During her time with Virginia Tech, Stephanie has been able to draw from her experiences working for other venerable academic institutions such as the University of Michigan and Central Michigan University as well as several large, private sector, global organizations (in France, Singapore, Germany, Hong-Kong), including automotive and global logistics. It was these opportunities that truly broadened her perspective, giving her in-depth and invaluable experience in the human resources arena. From strategic planning to operational leadership, from benefits to performance management, Stephanie provided guidance to managers and executives leveraging HR programs to drive results.

Beyond her many years of experience, Stephanie also holds a bachelor’s in business administration and a master’s degree in human resources and organizational development from Eastern Michigan University.

Sandra Burks
Reasearch and Innovation

Sandra joined Virginia Tech in August 2019 as the division director of human resources for the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation (OVPRI). 

Sandra brought many years of HR experience at the senior level, most recently serving as executive director for human resources with Roanoke City Public Schools. She holds a master in education degree as well as 30 hours post-masters in school administration.

During her tenure with OVPRI, Sandra has led the HR team and helped supervisors and employees transition to a remote work environment while maintaining a high level of productivity. She has expanded the OVPRI HR team to include generalist support and continues to ensure consistency of HR practice across the senior management area. As the bridge between OVPRI and the Division of Human Resources (DHR), Sandra is active on several working groups, including DHR’s Professional Development Community of Practice and the Recruitment Community of Practice.

Steve Filipiak
Office of the Senior Vice President and Chief Business Officer

Steve Filipiak has over 22 years of progressive, professional human resources experience. 

He is accomplished in leading teams and supporting organizations in the areas of employee relations, performance management, recruitment, organizational design and development, compensation, and human resources management. Steve began his career as a corporate recruiter. He developed broader human resource skills as an employee relations and recruiting manager/business partner in the travel and energy industries prior to beginning his higher education career at MIT. There, Steve progressively developed in human resources leadership roles, including human resources manager of information systems and technology; human resources officer supporting the schools of science and engineering; and manager of human resources supporting campus construction and campus planning.

In 2017 Steve became Virginia Tech’s first human resources division director, supporting the Advancement Division. As senior division director, he currently leads operational and strategic human resources support for divisions reporting to the senior vice president and chief business officer.

Roslyn Garrison
College of Architecture and Urban Studies

Roslyn joined Virginia Tech in 2019 with extensive experience in human resources, serving most recently as human resources manager for Federal-Mogul Powertrain, LLC in Blacksburg. 

In that role, she was responsible for human resources management of the plant, including employee and labor relations, talent management, and training. She has experience in recruiting, staffing, and employee retention through previous roles. Roslyn is a graduate of Virginia Tech’s Pamplin College of Business.

In her current role, she supports the development and delivery of a broad range of human resources services and programs for CAUS. Given the differences in the four schools that comprise CAUS – the School of Architecture + Design, Myers-Lawson School of Construction, the School of Public and International Affairs, and the School of Visual Arts – she works to respect the history of each school and respond to their unique needs.

She is an at-large board member of the Virginia chapter of CUPA-HR for 2021-22.

Dan Taggart
Office of the President

Dan is passionate about working in higher education and has over 20 years of experience in human resources and consensus building.

Dan joined Virginia Tech in August 2021 after serving in multiple HR positions at George Mason University, most recently as the director of human resources for the College of Science. In that role, he oversaw all aspects of the faculty/staff employee life cycle. In his current role at Virginia Tech, Dan provides leadership, guidance, and resources for all talent-related activities for the Office of the President; Athletics; Government and Community Relations; Audit, Risk, and Compliance; and the Ombuds Office.

Dan holds a bachelor’s degree in speech communication with a concentration in conflict and mediation studies from James Madison University; an MBA with a focus on HR administration from George Mason University; and is a Senior Certified Professional through the Society for Human Resource Management.

Leah Taylor
Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost

Leah joined Virginia Tech in April of 2019 with over 20 years of experience in human resources and higher education. 

During her tenure, her role has expanded to include the Graduate School and Dean of Library Services. Leah has served on several HR initiatives and work groups including Reinventing Diversity Recruitment, Compensation Coalition, COVID-19 Return to Campus-Individuals and Work Space, PageUp applicant tracking system trainer, and performance management pilot.

Prior to joining Virginia Tech, she was the vice president for administrative and student services at New River Community and Technical College in Beaver, WV. She has held roles throughout her higher education career as director of human resources, chief human resources officer, and vice president for administrative services. Leah has an undergraduate degree from Radford University and graduate degree from Mountain State University.

Patricia Wooten

Patricia has more than 15 year of experience in people management and human resources. 

She received a bachelor of science degree in business management from Southern Connecticut State University and has completed course work toward a master of business administration degree at Liberty University. She has also earned both the HRCI Professional in Human Resources certification and is a SHRM Certified Professional.

Prior to her arrival at Virginia Tech, she served as senior manager, people operations, for a small financial technology startup in Richmond, Virginia. Prior to that role, she served as vice president for human resources at various hospital systems within Hospital Corporation of America (HCA).

Patricia is a board member and contributor of the Virginia chapter of CUPA-HR and has spoken to several local groups regarding organizational culture and topical human resources subjects. She is dedicated to continuous learning as well as personal and professional growth. When she is not at work, you can find her traveling with her husband.