Rear Adm. John Dougherty recognized Air Combat Electronics program office’s (PMA-209) John Cooke with an individual NAWCAD Commander’s Award for system lifecycle support in a ceremony 25 Jan. (U.S. Navy Photo) 

John Cooke wins top NAWCAD award for system lifecycle support

Rear Adm. John Dougherty recognized Air Combat Electronics program office’s (PMA-209) John Cooke with an individual NAWCAD Commander’s Award for system lifecycle support in a ceremony held 25 Jan.   

“This year you demonstrated boldness, creativity and leadership that powered our organization in delivering enhanced capability, availability, affordability and safety,” said Dougherty. “You have set the bar high, and I thank you for all of your hard work. Across the board, our winners accomplished so much this year.”   

Cooke, the PMA-209 Fleet Support Team deputy assistant program manager for logistics, provides lifecycle sustainment of 47 legacy avionics systems. While most of the systems were originally fielded during the last century, his exploitation of sound logistics principals, innovative approaches, and enterprise wide resources keeps these critical systems available and relevant to today’s warfighter 

“I am very proud of John and truly grateful for all of his hard work to improve Fleet readiness,” said Capt. Margaret Wilson, PMA-209 program manager. “Not only does the command benefit greatly from his knowledge and experience, but he is also a dedicated mentor who goes out of his way to share his knowledge and expertise across the Fleet Support Team and the logistics community as a whole.”   

Cooke continuously monitors an array of tripwires and indicators to assess the sustainment health of his systems. While prioritizing reactive measures to address readiness degraders, he also focuses on leading indicators to engage before an issue affects system availability and aircraft readiness. He serves as the degrader action cell lead addressing several readiness degraders. 

In support of the AN/APN-171 radar altimeter, Cooke worked with Fleet Readiness Center South East and Marine aviation logistics squadrons to re-establish depot and intermediate repair capabilities of critical circuit cards. These efforts increased throughput by 200 percent and decreased customer wait time by 50 percent. In concert with the Aviation Rapid Action Team, he led a component reclamation effort to recover and repair carcass constraint assets that yielded 11 Weapons Replaceable Assemblies and 168 Shop Replaceable Assemblies. These assets immediately filled 18 supply requisitions, returned three CH-53E aircraft to an operational status and avoided $3.2 million in repair cost.  

Cooke worked with the F/A-18 and EA-18G program office (PMA-265) to provide support for the AN/AYK-14 mission computer. In collaboration with PMA-265, he developed an enhanced process for loading operational flight programs that improved aircraft load effectiveness by 80 percent. This reduced aircraft removals by 63 percent and reduced annual maintenance man-hours by 2,000 hours. 

He assessed the long-term requirements for the RT1379 Link 4 Carrier Landing system, and determined a potential future demand issue could have arisen. He worked closely with his Naval Supply Command to sweep component inventories and warehouses, allowing that system to continue operating in support of carrier based operations. 

Cooke identified multiple potential sparing issues across the 47 systems under his management. He analyzed weekly backorder status reports and swept the multitude of databases available, allowing him to identify stock requisitions and fleet plus up initiatives not previously identified. He worked with Naval Supply Command item managers and fleet stakeholders to increase sparing in pack-up kits to mitigate future backorder situations. 

He worked to build collaborative teams involving multiple organizations and services. His efforts in correcting documentation, identification, configuration management, and process flow with Defense Logistics Agency and Navy Supply Command managed parts resulted in more than 3,600 corrections of $2.6 million in parts and equipment.   

In fiscal year 2022, Cooke processed seven requests for engineering support from Defense Logistics Agency that helped identify replacement components for critical parts, executed four depot capability support actions that insured continued repair capacity for avionics components, responded to eleven fleet data calls and supported 20 strategic partner nation technical publication reviews.   

“This award recognition inspires the Fleet Support Team to continue addressing readiness degraders wherever they arise, especially fleet user reliability and supply chain challenges, understanding that correct root-cause identification is key to success and proactive engagement,” said Cooke. “Looking forward, the Team is collecting and applying lessons learned to implement corrective actions in the many Avionics systems they support in Sustainment of the acquisition phase in order to capture readiness upfront and early.” 

About PMA-209 

PMA-209 is a collaborative team of proactive acquisition professionals enabling current and future foundational aviation requirements led by Capt. Margaret Wilson, PMA-209 program manager. The program office is NAVAIR’s executive agent for the development and management of cutting-edge air combat electronics systems. Established in 1988, PMA-209 is responsible for providing critical capabilities to the warfighter in the form of common, fully developed, supportable, and reliable systems that align with the strategic and operational requirements of our platform PEO and PMA customers. 

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