The U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center hosted the annual Town Hall for the Executive Office and Directorate of Enterprise Operations on February 14 in Vicksburg, Mississippi, with presenters Colonel Bryan Green, ERDC Commander, and Pat Sullivan, Associate Director.
The Town Hall addressed four major areas of interest for employees: recognition of outstanding 2016 accomplishments, the future of ERDC, the reshaping of DEO and the progress of our facilities. Concluding the presentation, Green and Sullivan accepted questions. Dr. Holland was available to answer questions through VTC.
More than 200 people took part in the event and subsequent luncheon at the live presentation in ERDC’s Information Technology Laboratory classroom, while over 50 off-site employees viewed from conference rooms or offices.
During the presentation, Green discussed the restructuring of the DEO that began fourteen months prior when Lieutenant John Tucker, Hank McDevitt and Green, in coordination with the Manpower Study, were able to visualize reorganizational opportunities to be “more effective and more efficient.” Green continued by highlighting the accomplishments that have been made in the past 14 months since the reshaping of the DEO.
Green also expressed immense pride for the ERDC and specifically the EXO/DEO for placing among the top 25 of the best places in the federal government to work.
Green concluded with praise for the attendees: “Everything is awesome. You are all the most talented, most interesting – and, trust me, you’re interesting – and most extraordinary people in the ERDC. You are capable of amazing things, and it is awesome to stand up here today and have a chance to recognize all of you.”
Following Green’s praise, employees were awarded for their achievements. One of the highest honors awarded in the Corps of Engineers is the deFleury Medal. Three employees received this honor: Janice Sessums from Security, Craig Hancock from ORTT and Albert Winschel from the Directorate of Public Works.
The de Fleury Medal was named in honor of Francois-Lois Teissedre de Fleury, a French engineer in the U.S. Continental Army during the Revolutionary War. According to the U.S. Army Engineer Association, the Steel de Fleury medal recognizes “superior service to the Engineer Regiment as it supports the Army to assure mobility, enhance protection, enable expeditionary logistics, and build capacity in order to provide commanders with the freedom of action required for full spectrum operation in an era of persistent conflict.”
Green decided to grant additional awards this year for employees who “went above and beyond.”
These Foundation Awards were awarded to only one employee from each office of the EXO/DEO:
- Equal Employment Opportunity Office – James Hughes
- Resource Management/Business Support Division – Mazella Thomas
- Public Affairs Office – Sara Robinson
- Safety and Environmental Management Office – Richard Hudson
- Internal Review Office – Sheila Fowler
- Security – Christina Long
- Directorate of Public Works – Tony King
- R&D Fab Shop – Mickey Blackmon
- Installation Support Division – Bill Roth
- Office of Research and Technology Transfer – Laura Maxwell
- Directorate of Human Capital – Steven Snow
- ULA – Gregory Thomas
- Contracting Office – Ashley Jenkins
- ACEIT – Pat Caldwell
Pat Sullivan spoke on behalf of Dr. Holland, who was in attendance through VTC. Pat praised the work being done at ERDC and talked about future changes and transitions.
“The knowledge you bring to work every day and the support you provide allows our engineers, scientists and technicians do what they do best,” Sullivan said. “Your expertise in business and administrative operations allows them to provide innovative solutions to challenges facing our soldiers and our nation.”
After a brief time of questions and answers, Hank McDevitt closed the town hall by saying, “The EXO/DEO reaches across all 4 sites and touches all 7 laboratories. Each one of you in this room brings your own special, unique skills, talents and abilities that when comprised together makes for a very dominant, contributing team to the whole of ERDC.”