News | Jan. 4, 2022

Former senior technical quality advisor to be inducted into 2021 Hall of Fame

By Beth Reece

Editor’s note: This is one of five stories featuring 2021 DLA Hall of Fame inductees. A video highlighting inductees’ contributions to the agency will be broadcast on DLA’s Facebook page Jan. 11.

An employee known for her ability to rally teams into action and her expertise in technical quality is a member of the 2021 Defense Logistics Agency Hall of Fame. 

Denise Canada, former technical quality senior advisor for DLA Aviation’s Supplier Operations Directorate, began her 34-year DLA career in 1981 as a GS-2 clerk typist providing administrative support to equipment specialists, quality assurance specialists, catalogers and technical data specialists. She worked her way up as a supply clerk, item manager and then interned in quality insurance. 

As a GS-7, Canada partnered with manufacturers and procurement officials to resolve a critical problem with hazardous waste production in breathing apparatus canisters needed by the Navy. A one-year rotational assignment as a budget analyst eventually propelled Canada into leadership as chief of the Technical Quality Business Systems Modernization Office, where she led a team that integrated the Product Data Management Initiative into BSM. 

Providing opportunity for others to grow was a key attribute in Canada’s leadership style when she served as the Technical Quality Division chief from 2006 to 2013.

“Ms. Canada’s ability to understand the significance of rallying a team by ensuring that they understood every contribution regardless of how small it may have seemed has incredible value. Establishing and executing mission requirements and managing projects in this fashion enabled junior-level contributors to partner and work side-by-side with senior managers, giving them a platform for growth and personal/professional development,” according to her nomination.

Canada founded the Technical Quality Council that still exists today to share problems and solutions. She also created the Technical Quality Seminar, a forum for members of the technical quality community to discuss emerging issues and learn new skills to improve acquisition processes. 

Visit DLA’s Hall of Fame website for more information about other 2021 inductees and members from previous years.