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Home : Home : Warfare Centers : NSWC Philadelphia : Who We Are : Leadership

NSWC Philadelphia Division Commanding Officer Captain Dana F. Simon, USN


Capt. Dana F. Simon graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1984 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the United States Army Aviation Branch. He served as a Platoon Leader, Executive Officer and Operations Officer in the 123rd Aviation Regiment assigned to the 6th Infantry Division in Fort Wainwright, Ala. Leaving the Army in 1989 to pursue graduate education, he obtained a Master of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Alaska-Fairbanks in 1992.

Over the next ten years, Capt. Simon worked as a manufacturing engineer in Austin, Tex. for various semiconductor capital equipment manufacturing companies including Applied Materials, Advanced Machine Programming and Celerity. Relocating to Hawaii in 2003, he took a position as Process Improvement Engineer at Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard.

Capt. Simon received a direct commission into the Navy Reserves as an Engineering Duty Officer in 1999. He served as Administrative Officer for NSWC Port Hueneme Division Det 210 in Houston, TX. After moving to Hawaii, he served as Executive Officer for Naval Surface Group MIDPAC Det 610. Capt. Simon was recalled to active duty in 2004.

He was assigned to Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard and served as the Deputy Project Superintendent on multiple depot level submarine availabilities and as Shipyard Docking Officer. CAPT Simon's next tour was at Commander, Submarine Forces Atlantic (SUBLANT), where he served as the Maintenance Readiness and Improvements Officer. During his tenure at SUBLANT, CAPT Simon deployed to Iraq as an Individual Augmentee in 2009. He was assigned to the Second Marine Expeditionary Force in Al Asad as the CREW Technical Officer. In 2011, he reported to USS FRANK CABLE (AS 40) in Agana, Guam, where he served as the Repair Officer. CAPT Simon reported to Norfolk Naval Shipyard in September 2013. He was the Production Resources Officer and completed his shipyard tour as Business & Strategic Planning Officer. Prior to his current role, he served as commanding officer of Defense Contract Management Agency - Navy Special Emphasis Operation.

He assumed command of Naval Surface Warfare Center, Philadelphia Division in May 2019.

In addition to his personal decorations, Capt Simon is honored to wear the Iraq Campaign Medal in remembrance of the Sailors, Soldiers, Airmen and Marines who gave the ultimate sacrifice with honor.




Mr. Nigel C. Thijs - Technical Director, Naval Surface Warfare Center Philadelphia



Mr. Nigel C. Thijs serves as the Division Technical Director (TD) for Naval Surface Warfare Center, Philadelphia Division (NSWCPD). As the senior civilian, he provides executive leadership for and stewardship of over 2,800 Navy civilians who deliver solutions to the Fleet with technical and business excellence. Mr. Thijs leads research, development, test and evaluation, acquisition support, system integration, in-service engineering, and fleet support for surface and undersea vehicle machinery, ship systems, equipment, and material. He oversees over 100 labs and test facilities at the NSWCPD laboratory, maintains business and technical capabilities, and ensures competency alignment between the Division, Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC) headquarters, and Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) elements. He assumed his current duties upon selection in October 2022 before his appointment to the Senior Executive Service (SES) in December 2022.

Before his current position, Mr. Thijs served in various senior leadership positions at NSWCPD. He served as Comptroller, responsible for fiscal oversight of an annual budget of $1.4B, and led strategic budget, accounting, audit, and employee services functions at the Division. His culture and business process improvements resulted in the first ‘Satisfactory – Low-Risk’ financial rating of NSWCPD by the NAVSEA Inspector General. Mr. Thijs contributed to the Columbia Class Compatibility Test Facility as Director – Business Financial Division, where he led significant change in procurement execution. He also served as Head – Machinery Research, Logistics, & Ship Integrity Department, providing technical leadership to over 500 government personnel in logistics and technical authority execution across the engineering spectrum.

Before senior leadership, Mr. Thijs served as Director Fleet Modernization Division at NSWCPD, overseeing the execution of Hull, Mechanical, & Electrical (HM&E) system and component modernization and improved alteration integration with public and private shipyards.

Mr. Thijs began Federal service in 2006 as an engineer with NSWCPD supporting in-service engineering, design, and alterations, following four years supporting DON as a contractor.

Mr. Thijs holds an M.S. in Program Management from the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS), a B.E. in Marine Engineering from the State University of New York Maritime College, and has formal education in both Strategic Leadership and Advanced Acquisition. He is a member of the Acquisition Professional Community and is DAWIA Level III Certified in Engineering.

Mr. Thijs is a DON Bridging the Gap Leadership Development Program alumnus. His award highlights include the NAVSEA Warfare Center Transformation Award, NSWC Program Manager of the Year Award, and a joint Flag/SES Letter of Appreciation by the Commander, Navy Regional Maintenance Command, and Executive Director for Surface Warfare for his contributions to Surface Team One and positive impact on Surface Navy Readiness.