DAHLGREN, Va. – Ralph Stewart won the John Adolphus Dahlgren Award in recognition of his achievements as program director of the life-saving Battle Management System (BMS) at Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division (NSWCDD).
During Stewart’s tenure, the BMS team rapidly prototyped and delivered game-changing weapon control systems that deploy around the world with Special Operations Forces in the Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force.
“Most of the programs that BMS have been involved with were prototyped and deployed with the warfighter,” said Stewart, who joined the BMS program in 2012. “In some cases, lives were saved in theater. We can see the appreciation. It makes the work much more satisfying.”
The Dahlgren Award is the command’s highest award. “I am truly honored to receive this award and think it most reflects the accomplishments of our team,” said Stewart. “I am grateful for all those who played a part in this achievement and would like to thank our highly capable team at NSWC Dahlgren whose skill and can-do attitude have allowed us to rapidly field dominant Special Operations Forces capabilities. I have been blessed to be able to serve with such exceptionally talented teams of people. Their passion in supporting the warfighter has been my biggest motivation.”
The BMS team led by Stewart couples promising technology from private industry with a weapon control system designed for use across the multidomain battlefield on Littoral Combat Ships, the AC-130-variant aircraft, and other platforms.
The concepts of flexibility and interoperability stem from a philosophy of open-architecture that has guided the BMS program since its establishment during the height of combat operations during the Iraq War. The goal is to take new advances from the private sector – whether it is a new munition, camera sensor, improved mapping software, or something else entirely – and tweak it to speak the common language of the ships, planes and vehicles already deployed with U.S. forces.
The Dahlgren Award was established to recognize individuals with significant achievements in science, engineering or management. It is named for Rear Adm. John Dahlgren, who is remembered as the father of modern naval ordnance and inventor of boat howitzers that won acclaim for their good effect in both naval service and land battles.
Stewart is one of 90 individuals and 39 teams honored with various awards and featured in a special NSWCDD Honor Awards video program to be released in July. NSWCDD Commanding Officer Capt. Casey Plew, NSWCDD Technical Director John Fiore, and U.S. Rep. Rob Wittman, congratulated and commended awardees and their families in the video presentation to be posted on the command’s YouTube page.