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NEWS | March 27, 2023

Kipp and Erdner Receive Acquisition Leadership and Excellence Awards

By Team Ships Public Affairs

ARLINGTON, Virginia - Two Surface Warfare Officer Acquisition Professional (SWO AP) leaders received Rear Admiral Deak Parsons Awards for Excellence in Surface Warfare Acquisition at the recent Surface Navy Association National Symposium. The Parsons Award recognizes officers for distinguishing themselves through leadership in direct support of the surface Fleet and delivery of critical capability to the warfighter.

“As a Cadre, the SWO AP leaders draw tremendous inspiration from the spirit of innovation that Rear Adm. Parsons embodied and the peerless commitment he demonstrated towards delivering warfighting capability into the hands of operators,” said Rear Adm. Eric Ver Hage, the senior SWO AP, commander of Navy Regional Maintenance Centers and director for Surface Ship Maintenance, Modernization and Sustainment.

Capt. Jason Kipp received the 2022 Rear Admiral Deak Parsons Senior Award. Kipp masterfully combined the Small Surface Combatants Integrated Combat System and Ship Self-Defense System program offices to create the Atalanta Combat Systems program office within the Program Executive Office for Integrated Weapon Systems.

Capt. Matthew Erdner received the 2022 Rear Admiral Deak Parsons Junior Award for his leadership as Landing Ship Dock/Landing Platform Dock (LSD/LPD) division head at Mid-Atlantic Maintenance Center and acting commanding officer of Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division, Dam Neck Annex. Erdner is now a major program manager for Aegis Ashore at the Missile Defense Agency, Sea-Based Weapons Systems in Dahlgren, Virginia.

Ver Hage lauded each awardee’s creative leadership and commitment to Navy acquisition practices that drive greater lethality and combat capability to the fleet.

"Both Jason and Matt exemplify a tireless commitment to the warfighter. In this era of strategic competition, they model the type of innovative approaches we need to maintain and expand our tactical advantage,” said Ver Hage. “Among a highly talented group of SWO APs nominated, they stood out. I can't think of two more deserving officers to recognize with the Parsons Award."

The award is named for Rear Adm. William "Deak" Parsons. From developing the proximity fuse to leading the Manhattan Project, Parsons enabled deployed forces to fight and win throughout his naval career. Candidates are nominated by flag officers or senior executives who serve as that candidate’s reporting senior. Congratulations to all those nominated and selected.