NNSS News (January - March 2022)

NNSS teams recognized with NNSA Defense Programs Awards of Excellence

The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) recognized 10 Nevada National Security Site (NNSS) teams with Defense Programs Awards of Excellence on Tuesday, March 15. NNSA Acting Principal Assistant Deputy Administrator for Enterprise Capabilities Dr. Kevin C. Greenaugh was on hand to congratulate the teams for their excellent work in support of the nation’s Stockpile Stewardship Program.

“I am simply amazed at the great things your teams are doing for our country and its defense,” noted Dr. Greenaugh in his opening remarks. “Congratulations to each and every one of you for your outstanding contributions to NNSA Defense Programs, to our warfighters in the Navy and Air Force, and ultimately to our nation’s strategic deterrence program.”

Adding further prestige to the honors, NNSA additionally awarded an Exceptional Achievement (EA) merit to six NNSS teams. The EA acknowledges extraordinary accomplishments in the nuclear weapons life cycle process that are “home run” examples of using stockpile stewardship capabilities to promote and further advance important national security objectives. The EA is issued exclusively to recognize only those efforts and accomplishments that result in an extensive, unique, unusual, remarkable, exceptional and/or unexpected contribution to the Defense Programs mission.

The following teams, made up of more than 170 federal, contractor and national laboratory personnel, were recognized for their contributions to various Defense Programs projects:

  • C-3 Launcher/Shock Activated Research Collaboration Team
  • Laser-Driven Ejecta Test Bed Team
  • Vulnerability Analysis and Risk Planning Team
  • Hydro 664B Radiographic Imaging System Team (Exceptional Achievement)
  • Kraken Development Team (Exceptional Achievement)
  • MSTS Los Alamos Fiber Lab - Red Sage/Nightshade A, B, and C - Hex Packages Team (Exceptional Achievement)
  • Optical Pyrometry Team (Exceptional Achievement)
  • Stockpile Stewardship Data Analysis Holography Scanning Microscope Team (Exceptional Achievement)
  • Red Sage: Nightshade ‘A’ Analysis Team (Exceptional Achievement)
  • Device Assembly Facility Downdraft Table Operations Restart First Virtual Federal Readiness Assessment Team

Speaking at the awards ceremony, Dr. David Bowman, Manager of NNSA’s Nevada Field Office, the federal oversight for the NNSS, noted: “The awards presented today are just a small example of the great work done here at the Nevada National Security Site. I want to personally offer my thanks for a job well done and ask you to keep up the great work!”

Mark W. Martinez, President of Mission Support and Test Services, which manages and operates the NNSS, added, “I’d like to offer my congratulations and my gratitude to each of the individuals earning awards for their work at the NNSS. Six Exceptional Achievements is an amazing accomplishment and demonstrates outstanding performance in the incredibly important work you do every day.”

Established in 1982, the Defense Programs Awards of Excellence are given annually to recognize significant individual and team achievements in quality, productivity, cost savings, safety or creativity in support of NNSA’s nuclear weapons modernization program. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the awards ceremony for these 2020 DPAE awards, usually held in person, was delayed until it could be held virtually this year.

A night at the museum with NNSS leadership

The NNSS panel: Eugene Hunt, Mark Martinez, Dr. Darcie Dennis-Koller, Dr. Alexis Reed and Joel Leeman
The NNSS panel (l-r): Eugene Hunt, Mark Martinez, Dr. Darcie Dennis-Koller, Dr. Alexis Reed and Joel Leeman.

The National Atomic Testing Museum hosted a “Night at the Museum” on Thursday, March 17, welcoming the community to learn about today’s national security work happening at the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS). Mark W. Martinez, Mission Support & Test Services President, led a panel discussion of the history, scope and evolution of the work at the NNSS.

NNSS speakers included Eugene Hunt, Manager of Mission Delivery; Dr. Darcie Dennis-Koller, Acting Senior Director of Global Security; Dr. Alexis Reed, Director of Nuclear Response; and Joel Leeman, Director of Enterprise Infrastructure Programs.

Hunt shared how the NNSS contributes to stewarding the nation’s nuclear stockpile through its sophisticated testing capabilities. “Pictures tell a thousand words,” said Hunt. “It truly is the case when we are speaking of transformational diagnostic imaging. It’s vital to our mission to be able to see what goes on in a nuclear weapon when it implodes. Being able to take pictures of that gives us that thousand-word explanation.”

“Keeping people safe. That’s what we specialize in,” said Dr. Reed. Her team’s mission includes teaching first responders how to handle a disaster with a radiological component.

Dr. Darcie Dennis-Koller speaking at microphone
Dr. Darcie Dennis-Koller presents during the "Night at the Museum" event.

Dr. Dennis-Koller discussed the importance of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation and the NNSS’s role in using technology for awareness of nuclear weapon development around the world.

Leeman shared current and future infrastructure projects at the NNSS that support the Site’s vital national security mission.

Panelists participated in a brief question and answer session with guests at the museum.

A video of the event is available on YouTube.

Aerial UAS sensor deployment

a quadcopter mounted beneath a hexacopter
A photo of the 3DR Solo mounted beneath the Harris H6 (look for the propellers).

Did you know that transporting and deploying from the air a small unmanned aerial system (UAS) equipped with sensors and streaming data back to base in real-time is completely feasible? And, did you know it can be done with commercially available off-the-shelf parts and a little bit of ingenuity?

The need for developing such a capability would be to extend the range of a small sensor-equipped and battery-powered drone into a disaster area and to radio back information that would otherwise be too dangerous or impossible to measure.

The Nevada National Security Site validated the concept at Camp Roberts with a beyond line-of-sight transit and aerial deployment in November 2021. The transport vehicle was a Harris H6 hexacopter, and it carried a 3DR Solo quadcopter (the Solo) three miles from the Combined Arms Collective Training Facility to the McMillan airstrip, deploying the Solo at an altitude of 100 meters above ground. The Solo was equipped with a small cadmium zinc telluride gamma detector, a volatile organic compound sensor and a range-finding lidar. The Harris H6 was similarly equipped, but it carried a larger 2”x2” sodium iodide gamma detector. After deployment, both aircraft flew survey patterns and transmitted data back to base in real time, along with the data from the Solo relayed by the Harris.

flight patterns shown with red and blue lines from small unmanned aerial system demonstration
A screenshot of the flight paths flown.

For this demonstration, the Solo was not brought back home by the Harris. It landed at the destination after transmitting its data back to base via the Harris. To avert mishaps during the remote landing, the Solo was configured with the option to hook up to two separate hand-held controllers: one at the launch site and the other at the landing site. The Solo could also be landed manually if necessary.

Web servers on both aircraft controlled the detectors and streamed data in real time. Real-time strip chart data of detector signals and situational telemetry (time-of-day, GPS coordinates, altitude, attitude, etc.) were monitored from base. Both aircraft were also able to stream real-time data into COPERS (Common Operating Picture for Event Response and Situational Awareness), successfully meeting another of the team’s objectives.

EM Nevada Program announces 2022-32 Strategic Vision focused on safe, secure, and successful completion of cleanup mission

Pahute Mesa
Pahute Mesa

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Environmental Management (EM) Nevada Program today released a 10-year Strategic Vision for EM mission activities at the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS). The effort is a component of the DOE Office of Environmental Management’s Strategic Vision initiative, which is intended to provide a clear and concise summary of the progress EM anticipates making at key sites over the coming decade. The full EM Strategic Vision, including EM Nevada’s plans at the NNSS, can be found here: EM Strategic Vision | Department of Energy.

“The 2022-2032 Strategic Vision demonstrates that the EM Nevada Program is laser-focused on the safe, secure, and successful completion of our environmental restoration missions at the Nevada National Security Site,” said Rob Boehlecke, EM Nevada Program Manager. “I look forward to continuing to partner with our talented federal and contractor workforce, key stakeholders, and the public to make this vision a reality.”

Over the coming decade, the EM Nevada Program expects to complete its currently identified scope of cleanup activities at the NNSS. EM Nevada will continue to collaborate closely with local stakeholders, including the Nevada Site Specific Advisory Board (NSSAB), Intergovernmental Liaisons group, Low Level Waste Stakeholders Forum, and others to complete its cleanup mission in a manner that prioritizes the protection of people, communities, and the environment.

EM Nevada Key Accomplishments for 2021

Accomplishments marked by the EM Nevada Program last year include:

  • Initiated characterization and hazard reduction activities to prepare for demolition and closure of two legacy facilities at the NNSS
  • Obtained regulatory approval of data completeness for the Pahute Mesa groundwater region – the last active groundwater corrective action area at the NNSS
  • Safely and securely disposed ~550,000 cubic feet of classified and low-level/mixed low-level radioactive waste in support of cleanup and activities at federal sites across the U.S. involved in nuclear research, development, and testing, and ongoing national security and science missions

EM Nevada Key Regulatory Milestones for 2022-2032

EM Nevada Program activities are primarily regulated by the Federal Facility Agreement and Consent Order (FFACO), an agreement between the State of Nevada and the Department of Energy governing environmental corrective actions at sites impacted by historical nuclear activities. A supplemental Agreement in Principle between the Department and the State exists to provide a role for the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection in oversight of NNSS low-level waste disposal operations. The federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, which regulates hazardous waste management, also governs certain aspects of mixed low-level waste disposal at the NNSS.

Key regulatory milestones for the 10-year period include:

  • Submit the Test Cell C facility closure report to the regulator --- 2023
  • Submit the Engine Maintenance, Assembly, and Disassembly facility closure report to the regulator --- 2024
  • Transition post-closure monitoring for most sites to the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) --- 2027
  • Transition post-closure monitoring of the Pahute Mesa groundwater corrective action area to NNSA --- 2028

EM Nevada Post-2032 Cleanup Scope

The EM Nevada Program is currently scheduled to finish its cleanup mission within the 10-year period of 2022-2032, which will ultimately involve the completion of all active environmental restoration activities and the conveyance of remediated sites for long-term stewardship. It is currently anticipated that there will be a need within the DOE complex for NNSS waste disposal beyond 2030.

EM Nevada Program Mission

The NNSS was used from 1951 to 1992 to conduct a total of 100 atmospheric and 828 underground nuclear weapons tests. As a result, some groundwater, surface soils, and industrial-type facilities were contaminated on the NNSS and the surrounding Nevada Test and Training Range. The EM Nevada Program is responsible for completing cleanup actions at these historic nuclear testing locations. EM Nevada also manages the safe and secure disposal of waste at the NNSS, in support of cleanup and activities at federal sites across the U.S. involved in nuclear research, development, and testing, and ongoing national security and science missions.

For more information on the EM Nevada Program, please visit: Office of Environmental Management (EM) Nevada Program.

NNSS welcomes two ‘heroes’ through fellowship program

Damian Hicks standing in front of military aircraft
Damian Hicks

The Nevada National Security Site’s (NNSS) partnership with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Hiring Our Heroes welcomes two fellows this year who bring a combined 26 years of experience serving our nation.

Hiring Our Heroes connects veterans, service members and military spouses with civilian employment opportunities. During the 12-week program, participants are given the guidance to support a smooth return to the civilian workforce. Following the program, the employer can hire the fellow full-time.

The NNSS’ 2022 fellows are Damian Hicks and Brian Kraus, two soon-to-be veterans who bring valuable skills and have made significant accomplishments despite obstacles they faced.

Damian Hicks: A nontraditional path to service

Most soldiers join the military in their early 20s, which wasn’t the case for Hicks. At 24, he and his family went through the tragic loss of his mother. He quickly had to transition from college student to parent, gaining full custody of his 12-year-old sister.

Hicks supported his sibling and finished college, earning a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice. He went to work for a company based in Las Vegas for 12 years before realizing his dream was still out there–serving the nation.

At the age of 34, Hicks enlisted in the military. The reaction of his friends, who were just coming out of the military, was that he was out of his mind to enlist. He did it anyway, and he is glad he did.

“Serving in the military is something that is larger than life,” said Hicks. “It’s hard to explain the feeling, but it’s just larger than life.”

During his six years of active duty, he worked as an aircraft maintenance technician, operating on F-15 fighter jets and B-52 airplanes. In the last 18 months of his military career, he was the program manager/innovation coordinator, working for the Second Bomb Wing Commander and leading the Spark Cell and Continuous Process Improvement Office. The Spark Cell is an innovation program that empowers airmen to bring tomorrow’s tools to warfighters today. They partner entrepreneurs with the top problem solvers in industry, academia and the government.

“The military is an experience like no other, between the lifelong friendships that end up feeling like family, to the vital mission to protect the United States,” said Hicks.

While serving, Hicks also earned his MBA. At the NNSS, he puts his military and academic experience to work with a variety of systems and tools for the Program Planning and Control group.

Brian Kraus: Stepping up after 9/11

headshot of Brian Kraus in Air Force uniform in front of American flag
Brian Kraus

Kraus enlisted in the Air Force following the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, leaving trade school after two years to answer the call to serve.

Kraus joined the Air Force in 2002 as a HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopter crew chief. He spent 20 years in various roles, including overhaul technician, flying crew chief and flight line manager section chief. He will finish his career as a production superintendent. A typical day for Kraus consists of managing maintenance production operations, directing more than 300 personnel in 12 technical specialties, and maintaining and repairing 20 helicopters for combat and civilian search and rescue operations.

Throughout his 20 years of service, Kraus deployed seven times and was stationed at four bases. One of his biggest takeaways from his deployments was learning to adjust and make the best out of every situation.

“When I was stationed in Okinawa, Japan, with my wife, it was difficult being thousands of miles away from family,” he said. “Over our time there, it became my favorite base. We enjoyed the beach life and I have memories with my wife that will last my entire life.”

At the NNSS, Kraus works with Stockpile Experimentation and Operations, learning and maintaining the integrated master schedule for the U1a Complex.

“My role with the NNSS is very similar to what I did in the military, so the transition has been pretty easy so far,” said Kraus. “I like that I can use my skills in a new way and continue to serve our nation.”

Visit the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Hiring Our Heroes website to learn more about the program.

Davidson Academy earns first for the third consecutive year

screenshot of virtual Nevada Science Bowl winning team from Davidson Acadmey with Science Bowl logo

This past Saturday, Feb. 5, the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS) virtually hosted more than 100 students in the 31st Annual Nevada Science Bowl. Teams of students were tested in a fast-paced question-and-answer format competition, where they showcased their skills in science disciplines, including biology, chemistry, earth science, physics, energy and math.

This year was the second year the Nevada Science Bowl was held on a virtual platform, hosting 21 teams from 18 high schools across Nevada and Utah – all of which competed for a spot on the leader board. The top 12 teams received cash prizes for their school’s math and science departments.

Defending their 2020 and 2021 first-place titles, and securing a spot once again to represent Nevada at the National Science Bowl, are students from Davidson Academy in Reno, Nevada. The math and science departments at Davidson Academy will be awarded a total of $7,500 – $5,000 for Team One earning first place and $2,500 for Team Two earning second place. The National Science Bowl competition will take place in Washington, D.C., April 28-May 2.

The third-place $1,500 winners are from Green Valley High School in Henderson, and Reno High School took fourth and earned $1,000.

screenshot of virtual Nevada Science Bowl 2nd place team from Davidson Acadmey with Science Bowl logo
screenshot of virtual Nevada Science Bowl 3rd place team from Green Valley High School with Science Bowl logo
screenshot of virtual Nevada Science Bowl 4th place team from Reno High School with Science Bowl logo

The Nevada Science Bowl could not happen without the help from the volunteers and sponsors. The NNSS would like to thank each and every one of the following individuals for donating their time and representing the NNSS:

  • Marilew Bartling (Navarro)
  • Mike Bemski (Navarro)
  • Jesse Bonner (NNSS)
  • Courtney Brown (NNSS)
  • Elizabeth Craft (NNSS)
  • Brendan Collins (NNSS)
  • Josh Cruz (NNSS)
  • Jordan Dettlaff (JGMS)
  • Jesse "Andrew" Green (NNSS)
  • Victor Guevara-Cano (NNSS)
  • Robert "Lee" Hartsoe (NNSS)
  • Marinos Kopanos (NNSS)
  • James Majdanac (NNSS)
  • Joseph Martin (Navarro)
  • Darwin Morgan (NNSS)
  • Jordan Pillow (NNSS)
  • Phyllis Radack (NNSS)
  • Michelle Rathbun (Vector Resources)
  • Jonathan Richter (NNSS)
  • Joe Ward (NNSS)
  • James Wilson (NNSS)

Sponsors of the 2022 Nevada Science Bowl included the National Nuclear Security Administration Nevada Field Office, Mission Support and Test Services LLC, Environmental Management Nevada Program, Bureau of Reclamation and Navarro.

MSTS Business Operations wins prestigious Southwest Alliance for Excellence Pioneer Award for Excellence

Southwest Alliance for Excellence logo

The Business Operations (BizOps) unit of Mission Support and Test Services (MSTS), the management and operating contractor for the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS), has earned the Pioneer Award for Excellence, the second highest honor granted by the Southwest Alliance for Excellence (SWAE).

The SWAE Performance Excellence program is modeled on the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, which was won by the Kansas City Plant in 2009.

The Pioneer Award recognizes organizations that demonstrate effective, systematic approaches that are aligned with the organizational needs. It indicates organizational results that show good performance, and that comparative and trend data are available for several important results areas. It also indicates that, while some beneficial trends are evident, sustained excellence has not yet been achieved.

MSTS President Mark W. Martinez said, “Congratulations to the entire Business Operations team on earning this prestigious award and demonstrating why the NNSS is a leader in its field. This award recognizes our outstanding Business Operation team and its support of critical functions that make our mission possible. I am so proud of what our employees do every day to help keep our nation safe and secure.”

“This is an amazing accomplishment, especially considering that, as its own organization, Business Operations was stood up just two short years ago,” added BizOps Senior Director Neile Miller. “I want to recognize every member of the BizOps team, not only for their role in supporting our application for this award, but for their extraordinary commitment to enabling the mission every single day.”

To help achieve sustained excellence, SWAE’s site visit team will provide BizOps with a written assessment detailing a pathway for improvement. The feedback report is one of the most valuable features of the SWAE Performance Excellence Program process as it contains specific strengths and opportunities for improvement, based on the criteria for performance excellence.

“As team members directly supporting this journey, we want to let our colleagues know how grateful we are for their contributions to the application submittal and to a successful site visit,” said Performance Excellence Senior Manager Misti Duplex. “Thanks to their hard work and dedication to performance excellence, we have achieved a major milestone.”

The BizOps SWAE Performance Excellence Program journey started with the submission of the Performance Excellence Level 4 application to SWAE during the summer of 2021. In November, BizOps received word that they were selected for a site visit—a major step in the award selection process, as only a handful of applicants move forward to this step. During the site visit, SWAE examiners spent three days interviewing the BizOPs leadership team, subject matter experts, and individual employees. SWAE notified BizOps they had been selected to receive the award just a few short weeks later.

NNSS’ Dr. Marylesa Howard wins 2022 Sidney D. Drell Science & Technology Award

photo of Marylesa Howard in a pink hard hat underground
Dr. Marylesa Howard, 2022 Sidney D. Drell Science & Technology Award winner

Dr. Marylesa Howard, a manager in Diagnostics Research and Material Studies, has won the 2022 Sidney D. Drell Science & Technology Award from the Intelligence and National Security Alliance (INSA) Achievement Awards Committee. The annual award recognizes one individual who exemplifies excellence in the intelligence, homeland security and national security communities.

“If I’ve learned one thing on my journey, it’s to apply yourself and dare to dream,” Dr. Howard said. “Even if your dreams lead you to underground tunnels with hard hats and steel-toed boots. Maybe even especially then. My colleagues are a joy, the work is challenging, and I enjoy knowing I’m contributing to our national security. I love my job, and I’m honored to be recognized with this award.”

The Sidney D. Drell Science & Technology Award is named in memory of Dr. Sidney D. Drell, a groundbreaking theoretical physicist, advocate for nuclear arms control, and expert advisor to presidents of both parties on satellite reconnaissance and other advanced intelligence programs.

“I heartily congratulate Marylesa on this well-deserved recognition,” said Mark W. Martinez, NNSS president. “She is an outstanding scientist and a leader in her field, and has made great contributions to the incredible, cutting edge work happening at the NNSS. We are proud to have her on our team.”

The award was established in 2010 to recognize early achievers and mentors who inspire future leaders. It also recognizes the accomplishments of early- and mid-career professionals and graduate students for innovative scientific or technological research and development whose applications have had, or have the potential to make, significant impacts in intelligence, defense and/or national security.

The 2022 Achievement Awards Ceremony will take place Feb. 16, 2022, in Arlington, Va. The keynote speaker will be Lt. Gen. Scott D. Berrier, director of the Defense Intelligence Agency. The Achievement Awards annually welcomes nearly 250 senior intelligence community leaders from across government, industry and academia.

Remembering Troy Wade

black and white photo of Troy Wade

Troy Ernest Wade II, a longtime national security champion and career employee with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), passed away Jan. 16, 2022. He was 87.

Wade was born in 1934 in Cripple Creek, Colorado. He attended the University of Colorado but left school prior to completing his engineering degree to mine uranium in western Colorado. Wade’s career with DOE began in 1958 at the Nevada Test Site, now known as the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS). He started out as a mining supervisor for Reynolds Electrical and Engineering Company. His other roles at the site were a high explosives technician for Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, a nuclear safety officer for the Atomic Energy Commission’s Nevada Operations Office (now the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)’s Nevada Field Office), and increasing leadership roles that included director of quality assurance, director of test systems and deputy manager.

In 1981, Wade accepted the role of DOE’s principal deputy assistant secretary for defense programs at its headquarters in Washington, D.C. Two years later, he was selected to manage the Idaho National Laboratory, overseeing its diverse reactor research and operations activities. He returned to Washington in 1987 as the assistant secretary for defense programs, providing primary leadership and managing a budget of more than $10 billion for the nuclear weapons complex. He provided key guidance in negotiating the Joint Verification Treaty with the Soviet Union that was signed in 1988. Wade also was a founding member of the Nuclear Emergency Search Team, a key DOE radiological response equity now managed by NNSA.

Another Wade, his son Scott, works at the Nevada Field Office as a senior advisor for the oversight of Environmental Management activities at NNSS.

“One of the challenges of being his son was there were many things he couldn’t talk about,” said Scott said. He said his father always expressed pride in his work as “one of many who served their country in roles that helped promote peace for many decades.”

While Wade did not have a college degree, he once told Scott that he always found it interesting since he was often surrounded by engineers and nuclear scientists who did. Scott attributed his father’s success to his natural leadership abilities.

Wade retired from DOE in 1990 but continued to provide consulting support to various national security, nonproliferation, disarmament, and environmental cleanup initiatives, including advising Ambassador Linton Brooks on the establishment of NNSA. He was a member of the Nevada Governor’s Homeland Security Committee in the early 2010s and advised the U.S. Air Force on the Nevada Test and Training Range.

Troy Wade standing at a podium

In 2014, Nevada Representatives Dina Titus and Joe Heck honored a group of cold warriors for their service, Wade among them. “Too often your accomplishments are not as recognized as other veterans. Troy and I started on opposite sides of the table but, with patience and graciousness on his part, we became mutually respected colleagues and dear friends,” said Rep. Titus.

In a statement issued by her office after Wade’s passing, Rep. Titus observed, “Troy was the ultimate Cold Warrior. He loved this country and considered his work at the Nevada Test Site a patriotic duty. We are truly safer and more secure as a nation because of his vast knowledge and abiding commitment.”

“Troy Wade was a legend in the nuclear weapons program for decades, effectively working with the best nuclear experts, thousands of workers, and political leaders,” said Kathy Carlson, former manager of the Nevada Field Office. “His compassion, common sense, devotion to our country, and intelligence were so appreciated. Troy was dedicated also to his family and was a mentor to many of us. His passion, humor and spirit are greatly missed.”

Wade also made an impact in the Las Vegas community by helping establish the National Atomic Testing Museum, which opened in 2005. He and other former site managers secured donations and support during its development phase and oversaw its design and construction. Wade also served as the museum board of trustee’s chair for several years.

In addition to his son Scott, Wade is survived by his son Terry and daughter Sherri McKenzie; five grandchildren; and several great-grandchildren.

NNSS, NFO team members receive 2020 National Nuclear Security Administration Security Team Award

The Department of Energy has named the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Design Basis Threat (DBT) Implementation as its 2020 Security Team of the Year.

The award recognizes the contributions the members of the NNSA DBT Implementation team make each day to the nuclear security mission. The team protects some of the country’s most vital strategic assets and information, and through their award-winning work, have significantly influenced the way NNSA assesses risk and thereby made great strides in advancing U.S. national security objectives.

“The nomination is unprecedented,” said Associate Administrator and Chief, Defense Nuclear Security Jeffrey R. Johnson, “in that it spans the entire NNSA nuclear security enterprise and Department of Energy Office of Security Policy, and comprises both Management and Operating partners and federal oversight personnel. No team across the DOE spectrum has achieved similar progress on DBT implementation.”

Of the 24 team members who received the prestigious award, five are Mission Support and Test Services (MSTS) or Nevada Field Office (NFO) employees. From MSTS, Joshua Zamzow and Floriano Ciballos were honored, while NFO’s David Digon, Matthew Becker and Jerry Weber received awards. MSTS’s Joshua Zamzow additionally was awarded the Security Manager of the Year award for his contributions.

NFO Manager Dave Bowman praised the team. “Congratulations on winning the Security Team Award!”

NNSA’s security risk management philosophy is based on establishing and maintaining a graded approach and defense-in-depth safeguards. The safeguards and security program has multiple areas of deterrence including protective force, physical security, information security, material control and accountability, personnel security, and security program operations and planning. These programs integrate personnel, equipment, and procedures to protect physical assets and resources against theft, sabotage, diversion, and other criminal acts. The DBT policy the team developed is designed to represent a set of goals for the planning and implementation of Departmental safeguards and security programs for the next three to five years.