Indian Head, Maryland —
Four personnel from Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC) Indian Head Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technology Division (IHEODTD) were recognized with the Navy Meritorious Civilian Service Award, the third highest Navy civilian award, December 16. The Navy Meritorious Civilian Service Award is awarded to civilian employees in the Department of the Navy for meritorious service or contributions resulting in high value or benefits for the Navy or the Marine Corps.
Michael Thornton, Systems Engineering Department Head
As the Systems Engineering Department Head, Thornton leads the command’s largest department and is responsible for approximately 20% growth in department personnel. His efforts in recruitment demonstrate his dedication to ensuring a continuous source of qualified personnel focused on meeting the needs of the warfighter.
Thornton was recognized for his dedication and forward-thinking mindset in transforming the Systems Engineering Department to align with the broader Navy initiatives and strategies. His technical acumen, disciplined leadership and strict adherence to technical rigor led to unmatched customer service and warfighting support. Thornton was also instrumental in generating a comprehensive campaign plan, which aligns with the Warfare Center Division's Strategic Plan and revitalizes the command’s acquisition process.
William Shea, Human Resources Director
Shea’s understanding of human resource policies and procedures, coupled with his ability to lead people and processes, greatly improved his division’s posture. Key among his accomplishments was the unification of the NSWC Indian Head Division and the NSWC Naval EOD Technology Division human resource workforces following the organizational merger in 2013, leading the renegotiation of the American Federation of Government Employees union contract in 2017, and the numerous and significant hiring process improvements implemented during his tenure. Throughout his career, Shea has consistently demonstrated exemplary leadership skills while focusing on customer and employee satisfaction.
Bruce Corso, Chemical, Biological and Radiological Defense (CBR-D) Division Principal Engineer
Corso’s leadership and planning was instrumental for the functional transfer of the CBR-D Division from NSWC Dahlgren to NSWC IHEODTD, while maintaining the CBR-D’s customer focus and support of the warfighter. His mentoring efforts across all experience levels, from junior engineers to seasoned project managers, contributed to employee growth and morale during that period of change. Demonstrating his dedication to duty, he willingly accepted and completed critical Contracting Officer's Representative duties while simultaneously accomplishing his demanding program management role.
Gregory Harris, Mechanical Engineer (now retired)
Harris co-developed part of the formal Naval Sea Systems Command specification for designing underwater explosion resistant ship hull girders. His analytical expertise and utilization of simulation-based experimentation techniques enabled rapid validation and acceleration of naval systems, which otherwise would have been prohibitively expensive or impossible to conduct in live-fire tests. Harris’ contributions resulted in the rapid expansion of Dynamic System Mechanics Analysis from the undersea weapons community to the Navy platform acquisition community and to agencies outside of the Department of Defense.
NSWC IHEODTD — a field activity of the Naval Sea Systems Command and part of the Navy's Science and Engineering Establishment — is the leader in ordnance, energetics, and EOD solutions. The Division focuses on energetics research, development, testing, evaluation, in-service support, and disposal; and provides warfighters solutions to detect, locate, access, identify, render safe, recover, exploit, and dispose of explosive ordnance threats.