About Us

About the MLA Research Institute

Peter F. Drucker understood the study of management to be a liberal art – “liberal” because management deals fundamentally with human nature, knowledge, and wisdom; and – “art” because it is concerned with practice and application.

Building upon the wisdom of Drucker, at CiAM we believe that knowledge, self-knowledge, wisdom, and leadership are essential to developing the individual as well as society. At CiAM we firmly believe that ‘management as a liberal art' (MLA) helps support personal development, organizational effectiveness, community development, and the realization of human dignity.

As a result, CiAM has formed the MLA Research Institute (MLARI), an institute that is dedicated to the study and application of management as a liberal art within organizations. With the purpose of advancing our understanding and application of MLA in organizations, the MLA Research Institute develops educational content, publishes its research, and offers training workshops.

The MLARI develops MLA-specific course assignments, class exercises, and case studies through which CiAM's students gain a solid understanding of MLA as well as learn how to apply MLA in real-life organizational settings. The MLA Research Institute also works with organizations to develop their knowledge of MLA and help improve their overall effectiveness.

Vision, Mission, Objectives

Vision, Mission, & Objectives


To promote human dignity in life, work, and community to build a functioning society.


To expand knowledge and practice of Management as a Liberal Art (MLA) globally by conducting and disseminating collaborative research, and developing educational content.


  1. To advocate Management as a Liberal Art (MLA)
  2. To develop educational content relating to MLA
  3. To showcase community leaders and organizations who practice MLA
  4. To offer training workshops
  5. To promote freedom and liberty and resist those who oppose these values

CiAM’s ‘management as a liberal art’ approach helps students and clients to think critically about management responsibilities, and to see the interrelationships that exist between knowledge, moral leadership, personal development, organizational development, and a functioning society.



Karen E. Linkletter, Ph.D. - Acting Research Director

karen-linkletter(600x800).jpgDr. Karen Linkletter is a researcher with the Joseph A. Maciariello Management as a Liberal Art Institute (MLARI), where she develops curriculum for CiAM and conducts research to advance the work of Peter F. Drucker. She and Dr. Maciariello co-authored the book Drucker’s Lost Art of Management: Peter Drucker’s Timeless Vision for Building Effective Organizations

Dr. Linkletter has published over 20 articles and essays on a variety of historical topics. She has an M.B.A. and a PhD in History from Claremont Graduate University and received her A.B. from U.C. Berkeley.  Dr. Linkletter taught in the American Studies Department at Cal State University, Fullerton for fifteen years. She is also a professional cellist, performing throughout southern California and teaching private students. She is an avid horseback rider and enjoys time with her horses, Spencer and Chance.

Phillip Pan - Program Coordinator

phillip-pan.jpgPhillip Pan has over 35 years of executive management experience where he built, grew, and improved a diverse pool of organizations across various industries. With extensive experience in many business disciplines and especially in strategy, he has aligned disparate groups to work collectively toward a common goal.

He has held a variety of senior positions such as Executive VP and COO for a large investment corporation; COO of an international sports entertainment provider; COO of a high-tech digital printing provider; VP of Sales & Business Development for a multi-media firm and VP of Business Development for a large frozen yogurt company. In Taiwan, he educated grades K-12 in Taipei. Through his positions with Ming Lo Shao and CiAM, he is able to devote himself to learning and disseminating Peter F. Drucker’s teaching and values, especially in Management as a Liberal Art.

Byron Ramirez, Ph.D. - Researcher


Dr. Byron Ramirez is an applied economist with experience in quantitative research, industry analysis, and policy analysis. A former strategy and management consultant, he developed expertise in economic analysis, statistical analysis, forecasting, and analytics. Earlier in his career, Dr. Ramirez worked in senior analyst roles for Caltech, Bank of America, Lennar Corporation, and Envirogen. After completing his M.S. in management and strategy from the Drucker School, he went on to complete a PhD degree in economics at Claremont Graduate University. Through a series of econometric models, Dr. Ramirez’ dissertation explored the nexus between entrepreneurship, innovation, and economic development.

Dr. Ramirez has worked as a macroeconomic and international trade analyst at Wikistrat, and as a consultant for CENTRA Tech. He has worked on international development projects and performed trade analysis for US government agencies. He has published papers on entrepreneurship, innovation, technology, international trade, macroeconomics, economic development, management best practices, and sustainable development. Dr. Ramirez has completed advanced certificate programs at the World Bank, Columbia University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and USC Marshall School of Business.

Michael Cortrite, Ph.D - Researcher

Michael-Cortrite.jpgDr. Cortrite has 30+ years of experience, education, and training related to subjects being taught. He is currently teaching at the MBA level at California State University in Northridge and is also an Educator at the Simon Wiesenthal Center Museum of Tolerance. He was a professor of Administration at Santa Monica College where he developed a new Ethics in Law Enforcement class. He has held many positions at the Santa Monica Police Department rising to the rank of Sergeant. His publications include “What Is the Best Method of Evaluating a Police Training Program?” (Vol.4) as well as co-authoring “Ethics Training: A Passing Fad or Sustaining Component.” He has also volunteered at various organizations including his current Board of Directors position at the Santa Monica Police Activities League. Specialization: Management and Organization Behavior.