Acquisition innovation and excellence took center stage Aug. 19 when Marine Corps Systems Command recognized its top-performing Marines and civilian Marines.
Leading the way were Maj. Keith Kovats, Gunnery Sgt. William Meehan and Dennis Boucher who accepted the Andrew J. Higgins, Eugene M. Stoner and Donald Roebling Awards, respectively. These awards recognize superior professional excellence and innovation in pursuit of the acquisition, fielding and support of systems and equipment to the operating forces.
Other individual and team awards spotlighted those who excelled in Marine Corps acquisition and support from cradle to grave for a myriad of systems and equipment.
As the acquisition command of the Marine Corps, MCSC equips and sustains Marine forces with the most capable and cost-effective ground weapon and information technology systems.
Kovats received the Higgins award for his work as project officer for the $140 million Networking On-The-Move program in MCSC’s Marine Air-Ground Task Force Command Control and Communications, also known as MC3, and related projects.
“It is a great honor to be selected for the Higgins Award,” Kovats said. “It is more an indication of the great team of Marines and professionals within MC3 and [MAGTF Command and Control Systems] than any action for which I can take credit. Without such amazing leaders and teammates throughout the organization—along with the great teams that support us at [Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command] and our support contractors—nothing I've been credited with could have been achieved.”
Meehan accepted the Stoner award for his leadership as the Very Small Aperture project officer for MC3. He managed a $126 million portfolio and was instrumental in the development, testing, evaluation and fielding of satellite communications kits worth $12 million.
“This is the second concurrent year during that a member of the Satellite Communications team has been presented with this award [previously Gunnery Sgt. Eric Baquol],”Meehan said. “The Stoner award represents the entire SATCOM team, to include the dedicated government civilians and contractors who work hard to ensure we do the right thing for the fleet at all times. I’ve grown professionally and personally—lessons I'm sure will stay with me throughout the rest of my career.”
Boucher received the Roebling award for service as product manager for the Assault Amphibious Vehicle. The award cited his leadership, vision and expertise in acquiring new capabilities that kept an aging fleet of AAVs operationally ready, with a readiness rate as high as 85 percent. He also helped attain a survivability upgrade to ensure that almost 400 AAVs will stay in service until 2035.
“I am deeply humbled and sincerely appreciate being selected to receive the Roebling Award,” Boucher said. “Individual recognition is underpinned by the efforts of dedicated teams of professionals that have a collective focus on the mission. My team of highly skilled and experienced professionals understands the challenges of sustaining a 40-year-old combat platform and tirelessly gets things done. They are the reason for our success.”
Other award recipients received the Commander’s Annual Honorary Awards for 2014. The following awards recognized military and civilian personnel, individuals and teams who made significant contributions to MCSC’s mission accomplishment:
Commander’s Honorary Award for Excellence in Acquisition Support: James Deacon, Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Atlantic
Commander’s Honorary Award for Excellence in Command Support: Keith Hintz, Resource Management, individual; Information Technology Asset Management Team
Commander’s Honorary Award for Excellence in Contract Management: John Wahl, Global Combat Support System-Marine Corps, individual; Total Force Information Technology Systems Contracting Team
Commander’s Honorary Award for Excellence in Financial Management: Richard Aranda, Marine Corps Tactical Systems Support Activity, individual; Light Armored Vehicles Financial Management Team
Commander’s Honorary Award for Excellence in Marine-Air-Ground Task Force Engineering: Francis Bonner, Program Executive Officer Land Systems, individual; Live Virtual Constructive Integration Team
Commander’s Honorary Award for Excellence in Logistics and Product Support: Herbert Morris, Acquisition Logistics and Product Support, individual; Expeditionary Water Distribution System Integrated Product Team
Commander’s Honorary Award for Excellence in Operations Research and Systems Analysis: Michael Musatow, Programs; Advanced Amphibious Assault Cost Analysis Team
Commander’s Honorary Award for Excellence in Program Management: Jeffery Chandler, Mine Resistant, Armor Protected Vehicles; Light Armored Vehicles Anti-Tank Modernization Program Team
Commander’s Honorary Award for Innovation: Jeffrey Kent, Systems Engineering, Interoperability, Architectures and Technology, individual; Amphibious Combat Vehicle Team
Commander’s Superior Medal of Merit Award: Nancy L. Levesque, Information Systems and Infrastructure
Lawrence P. Kreitzer Leadership Award: Daniel Corbin, program manager for Information Systems and Infrastructure
Col. Richard “Dick” Bates Award: Margaret Toth, Information Systems and Infrastructure