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    "To whom much is given, much is required." PM ASE Member Earns Black Engineer of the Year Award

    “To whom much is given, much is required.” PM ASE Member Earns Black Engineer of the Year Award

    Photo By John Higgins | Christine Dedrick, Lead Systems Engineer for Infrared Countermeasures (IRCM) was...... read more read more



    Story by John Higgins 

    Program Executive Office Intelligence, Electronic Warfare & Sensors

    The engineering innovations of Black Americans are a massive part of life for people around the globe; the three light traffic signal used throughout the world was invented by Garret Morgan in 1923. Far less "every day" was Katherine Johnson, whose calculations of orbital mechanics allowed all of mankind to "slip the surly bonds Earth" farther than ever before, landing personnel on the moon for the first time.

    Johnson worked at Redstone Arsenal, where much of the testing and planning for NASA’s Space Program took place, and just outside of that post, is Product Office Aircraft Survivability Equipment (PM ASE) and Christine Dedrick, Lead Systems Engineer for Infrared Countermeasures (IRCM) was awarded the 2022 Black Engineer of the Year Award (BEYA) for Outstanding Technical Contribution.

    Dedrick joined the PM ASE team in 2019 bringing 30 years of experience in STEM, business and leadership. Prior to her current assignment she was Chief of the Office of Research and Technology Applications at the Army Aviation and Missile Center.

    Dedrick now manages a portfolio that includes Common Infrared Countermeasure (CIRCM), a next generation of lightweight laser-based infrared countermeasure systems. CIRCM will interface with the Army’s Common Missile Warning System (CMWS) and future Missile Warning Systems (MWS) that will continue to protect Soldiers and airframes around the globe well into the next decade.

    "This award is not just for me," said Dedrick. "It is also for those other minority women who will come after me, and who are watching me now. For me, it means my hard work and achievements are recognized. It means the Aircraft Survivability Program Office, who nominated me for this award, recognizes the technical contributions I have made to the success of the program."

    Among many other achievements, Dedrick spearhead the use of the Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) effort supporting the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army (Systems Engineering) (DASA(SE)) Digital Engineering Strategy. MBSE lays out initial parameters, problems and solutions but where it is set apart is its cycle of constant improvement.

    Dedrick lead the team to its first successful CIRCM MBSE model in 2021, and now works closely with the Army Future Vertical Lift (FVL) program to leverage MBSE in the Army’s next generation aircraft.

    Additionally, Dedrick lead an effort to streamline and optimize legacy Infrared Counter Measure (IRCM) systems reducing the Size, Weight and Power (SWaP) costs by more than 50 percent.

    "It’s such an honor to have talented, dedicated engineers like Christine on our team," said Lt. Col. Preston Pysh, Product Manager for IRCM. "The IRCM mission is technically challenging and requires some of the most rigorous performance based operational testing; there’s very little room for error when it comes to bringing troops home. Christine makes it possible. Her selection as Black Engineer of the Year for DoD is well deserved and I couldn’t be prouder."

    Dedrick’s dedication extends outside her regular job as well, as she works within her community to assist youth in their careers and lives.

    "To whom much is given, much is required," said Dedrick. "I want to be a mentor to that recent college graduate so that she does not become defeated and overwhelmed by the demands of the profession. I want to help when and where I can, whether it is through my church or my sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha. That’s the true measure of a person, providing help when needed."

    And that community is ever present in Dedrick’s thoughts.

    "This award is also for the next woman of color who may be having a difficult time envisioning herself as a recipient of the BEYA Outstanding Technical Contribution in Government Award." said Dedrick. "This award says you can do it!"



    Date Taken: 03.01.2022
    Date Posted: 03.24.2022 14:15
    Story ID: 417104

    Web Views: 186
    Downloads: 1