AFRL Aerospace Systems Directorate luncheon honors annual awardees

  • Published
  • By Holly Jordan
  • AFRL Aerospace Systems Directorate

WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio  – The Air Force Research Laboratory Aerospace Systems Directorate honored its top performers at the 8th Annual Awards Luncheon, Jan. 30, 2020, at the Schuster Performing Arts Center in Dayton, Ohio.

Master of Ceremonies Miguel Maldonado kicked off the event, themed “RQ and You,” a play on the directorate’s official two-letter designation.

Dr. Michael Gregg, director of the Aerospace Systems Directorate, then took the stage to welcome the crowd and thank attendees for a year of hard work and achievement. “I think you should take a lot of pride in what you’re doing. The things you’re doing right now are really setting the tone and the character of the Air Force from a technology perspective for the next two decades.”

Guest speaker Capt. Joshua Caudill of the Air National Guard's 112th Fighter Squadron, spoke to the gathering about his experiences as a fighter pilot and the journey that took him from working in the field of financial management to pursuing his lifelong dream of flying for the military. He extolled the virtues of the Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System, a technology developed within the Aerospace Systems Directorate and subsequently integrated onto U.S. Air Force Block 40/50 F-16 aircraft. Caudill, who has flown extensively with the system, helped capture data that allowed directorate researchers to further refine and improve the technology.

“What you all do reduces the risk that I take every day,” Caudill said.

Retaking the stage, Gregg presented Caudill with a coin on behalf of the directorate. Maldonado then joined him to begin the presentation of awards. 

The recipients of the 8th Annual Aerospace Systems Directorate awards are as follows:

Administrative Excellence Award – Reinnah Gilson

Scientific/Technical Technician Award (Individual) – Rodney Gough

Scientific/Technical Technician Award (Team) – The Trisonic Gasdynamics Facility 5000 Horse Power Motor Repair Team: Kevin L. King, Paul J. Olekas, and Nathan S. Brown

Mission Support Award (Individual) – Eva Lawson

Mission Support Award (Team) – The Edwards Munition Team: Andrew Williams, Technical Sgt. Anthony Cook, and Staff Sgt. Tyler Ellis

Technology Transfer and Transition Award (Team) – F-35 Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System Team: Amy Burns, and Kevin Price

Mentoring Award – Katherine Sheets

Leadership Award – Marquise Goodeaux

Senior Leadership Award – Dr. Marcus Young

Supervisory Award – Carlos Arana

Noncommissioned Officer of the Year Award – Technical Sgt. Anthony Cook

Senior Noncommissioned Officer of the Year Award – Master Sgt. David Rash

Company Grade Officer of the Year Award – Capt. Christopher Hare

Individual Mobilization Augmentee Field Grade Officer of the Year – Maj. Matthew Dillsaver

Field Grade Officer of the Year – Maj. Brian Kroeger

Innovation Award – Dr. Kamran Ghiassi

Scientific and Technical Management Award – Dr. Mathew Kirsch

Scientific and Technical Achievement Award (Individual) – William Boles

Scientific and Technical Achievement Award (Team) – Green Propellant Infusion Mission Team: Anthony Zuttarelli, Dr. Ghanshyam Vaghjiani, Dr. Marcus Young, Michael Tinnirello, Adam Brand, Dr. Jerry Boatz, Dr. Jeffrey Mills, and Brett Wight

International Award (Individual) – Jason Mossman

International Award (Team) – Engineered Surfaces, Materials, and Coatings Team: Gary Dale and 1st Lt. Dylan Hope

Civilian of the Year Category I – April Valdez

Civilian of the Year Category II – Crystal McGaha

Civilian of the Year Category III – Dr. Samuel Bailie

Director’s Trophy Classified (Junior Force Individual) – Brock Pleiman

Director’s Trophy Classified (Senior Individual) – Mark H. Amos

Director’s Trophy Classified (Team) – Flying and Handling Quality Team: Stephanie Simon; Kenneth Sewell, III; Isaac Weintraub; and Deryck Beard

Director’s Trophy (Junior Force Individual) – Kerianne Hobbs

Director’s Trophy (Senior Individual) – Dr. Daniel Brown

Director’s Trophy (Team) – XQ-58A Valkyrie Flight Test Team: Douglas Szczublewski, Lauren Zientarski, and David L. Hart

Dr. Richard B. Rivir Scientific and Technical Achievement Award – Jared Neely

E. C. Simpson Award – Large Scramjet Test Team: Todd Barhorst, 1st Lt. Samuel Nyamekye, Paul Kennedy, Dr. Jeffrey Donbar, and Dr. Kristen M. Rice

Dr. Courtland D. Perkins Award – High Temperature Case Technologies Team: Geoffrey Trapp and Dr. Gregory Yandek

Don Ross Award – Dr. George Harting

S. D. Heron Award – Dr. Roger Kimmel

General Benjamin D. Foulois Award – Dr. Laura Humphrey