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07/06/2017

Two honored with DON awards for excellence in test and evaluation

Joseph Twesme and Rick Quade shake hands
Rick Quade, Department of the Navy Deputy for Test and Evaluation and acting Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development, Test and Evaluation, presents Joseph Twesme, right, with the 2017 DON Award for Technical Excellence at a T&E Facility or Range during a June 22 ceremony in Point Mugu, California. (U.S. Navy photo by Kimberly Brown)
Two Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division employees were honored with Department of the Navy Test and Evaluation Awards during a June 22 ceremony in Point Mugu, California.

Alex Ordway, SeaVex/Perdix project lead, earned the DON Small Program Outstanding Tester Award for his demonstrated expertise related to SeaVex/Perdix, expendable micro-unmanned aerial vehicles, while supporting the Strategic Capabilities Office.

“Mr. Ordway’s expertise, enthusiasm and dogged determination encouraged a small team of technical engineers and service members … to combine and transform” existing U.S. Navy and U.S. Air Force systems, putting them into service in “ways the world has never seen before,” according to his nomination, tendered by his supervisor, Kurt Statts.

Ordway was the only U.S. Navy member of the test team. The project’s graduation exercise was not only successful, it was conducted in front of a media crew from “60 Minutes.”

Joseph Twesme earned the award for Technical Excellence at a T&E Facility or Range. Twesme is a chemical engineer and the lead infrared target modeling subject matter expert for the Weapons Environments and Simulation branch of the Integrated Battlespace Arena.

According to Twesme’s nomination, which was submitted by his coworker Robert Madsen, “Joe has dedicated his career to T&E of weapons systems in the areas of IR scene generation, software-in-the-loop systems and hardware-in-the-loop systems. His dedication, passion, sound engineering principles and contributions have made NAVAIR a leader in weapon systems test and evaluation.”

Rick Quade and Alex Ordway with award
Rick Quade, Department of the Navy Deputy for Test and Evaluation and acting Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development, Test and Evaluation, presents Alex Ordway, right, with the 2017 DON Small Program Outstanding Tester Award during a June 22 ceremony in Point Mugu, California. (U.S. Navy photo by Kimberly Brown)

On a more personal note, Madsen said Twesme is just enjoyable to work with.

“He is one of those super-smart guys who is passionate about his work,” Madsen said. “He has original ideas, concepts, and technical solutions, and he’s also quick to lend a hand.”

Rick Quade, DON Deputy for Test and Evaluation and acting Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development, Test and Evaluation, traveled to Point Mugu, California, to deliver the awards in person.

“There is a challenge in understanding the value of our people,” Quade said. “We have a national treasure in our workforce. I am constantly amazed at – and a little bit jealous of – how smart our folks really are.”

NAVAIR won four of the nine DON T&E awards; nominations came from the six systems commands and all Navy and U.S. Marine Corps operational test agencies. The CH-53K King Stallion Integrated Test Team and Lt. Cmdr. Eric Martin received their awards in a ceremony held in Patuxent River, Maryland, on May 24.