On November 5, 2020, the Leadership Southern Maryland (LSM) Class of 2021 participated in the third of nine educational sessions for the 2020-2021 LSM Executive Program – Defense. Class members started the morning at Patuxent River Naval Air Museum (PRNAM) with an overview of the day by CAPT John Brabazon LSM’20, Naval Air Station Patuxent River commanding officer. They also received an overview of the Naval Surface Warfare Center Indian Head Division (NSWC IHD) from John Hungerford LSM ’18. NSWC IHD, located in Charles County, is the Department of Defense (DoD) Energetics Center and serves as the DoD Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technology Program lead.
The class then proceeded to the United States Naval Test Pilot School (USNTPS) for a presentation delivered by CDR Jeremy DeBons, USNTPS executive officer. DeBons gave the class a brief on what goes on inside the “schoolhouse” followed by a tour of the TPS flight line. This was followed by a windshield tour of NAS Patuxent River with stops including Atlantic Test Range, the Environment Department Conservation Division Education Center, and the air traffic control tower.
After returning to PRNAM, the class got an up-close look at EOD robotics with several members taking up the controls and operating the robots. This was followed by briefs by local advocacy groups who champion both the base and members of the military. Representatives included Roger Cordell LSM’18 from the Navy League, Bonnie Green, LSM Founding Sponsor and executive director of The Patuxent Partnership, and Gary Kessler, president of the Southern Maryland Navy Alliance. The class wrapped up the day with a presentation on Readiness and Environmental Protection Integration (REPI) with Community Planning Liaison Officer Sabrina Hecht and environmental scientist Melanie McGinnes. Glen Ives, president and CEO at Sabre Systems closed out the session by helping the class to “connect the dots.”
Leadership Southern Maryland is a nine-month tuition-based program that educates and inspires a diverse group of current and emerging leaders. The program creates opportunities for collaborations and partnerships impacting the community needs of Calvert, Charles, and St. Mary’s counties ensuring a cross-section of the region including diversity of geographic location, profession, ethnicity, and gender.