ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. – Twenty-one years of service to the Army Aviation community coupled with multiple deployments as both a Soldier and government civilian were key factors in the presentation of the 2016 Army Aviation Association of America, known as AAAA, Aircraft Survivability Equipment, or ASE, Award during a ceremony held in conjunction with the co-sponsored AAAA and Army ASE Symposium.
Michael White, the Project Manager for ASE theater liaison officer, received the award after returning just days earlier from a deployment to Afghanistan where he was responsible for providing critical support, technical analysis, and daily oversight of every system in the Army’s ASE portfolio.
“His dedication and untiring work ethic ensured that every aircraft on every mission is equipped with fully operational ASE systems and ensured the survivability of Army aircraft and the lives of countless Army warfighters and aircrews,” said Col. Jong Lee, PM ASE.
“It means a great deal to me to receive this award; the PM works hard to provide this level of ASE support to the warfighter and their families and for me to be recognized as a member of the ASE team, is quite an honor,” White said.
Amongst the numerous recent accomplishments for White was overseeing the successful integration of the Common Missile Warning System Hostile Fire Indications modification for numerous CH-47F aircraft. He also coordinated and facilitated the start of the Advanced Threat Infrared Countermeasures (ATRICM) Pod-bay Door modification. These efforts required the coordination of contractor support from the United States and the need to balance the flight schedule and aircraft availability with the installation schedule to prevent any negative impact on mission capability or battle rhythm.
According to the award nomination, “White diligently coordinated with the multitude of key players (installation teams, facility coordinators, and the various personnel assigned to the Combat Aviation Brigades). His organizational skills, maturity, and tact prevented problems, allowed the completion of the installations on schedule, and eliminated any impact on mission availability. During the absence of a key Original Equipment Manufacturer subject matter expert for the ATIRCM modifications, he quickly stepped in and served as the technical conduit for fault diagnostics, analysis, and all actions required to facilitate the resolution of every issue.”
In addition to fulfilling the requirements of his primary duties to interface with the units, White also provided unit-level ASE training on a regular basis to ensure that newly arriving aircrews were fully trained on the techniques for operating and maintaining the various systems. He trained users on every new piece of hardware or software that was installed and fielded over the course of his time as the LNO.
“His daily interaction with the users provided invaluable information to the PM’s CONUS-based training team and helped shape training for units in the pre-deployment phase of training, future system upgrades, and gave the aircrews a direct pipeline for their feedback,” Lee said.
In highlighting the need for the ASE systems he supported White noted, “the value added to the warfighters, is knowing they have systems installed on their aircraft that are designed to defeat threats, so they can return home safely to their families and know they were able to accomplish their missions with the utmost confidence in ASE.”
Story by Brandon Pollachek, PEO IEW&S