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Barrios Announces 2019 4th Quarter Employee BEAR Awards

JOHNSON SPACE CENTER (Houston, TX): Barrios Technology recently announced their 2019 4th Quarter BEAR (Barrios Employee Award and Recognition) awards. These awards presentations have been delayed due to the COVID-19 quarantine requirements set forth by the Federal Government. Each recipient was commended for their high level of expertise and outstanding performance supporting Barrios’ contracts with NASA’s International Space Station (ISS) and Orion Programs. Employees recognized included Patrick Alvarez, Steven Benoit, Curtis Gilmore, David Held, Tori Scott, Julie Sutton, Guy Thompson, Ted Viar, and Celeste Villareal. Two ARES employees were also recognized as part of the MAPI OFT Team. Guy Thompson was presented the Silver Bear Award for his outstanding dedication to the Flight Operations Directorate (FOD) JOIST Software Services team. Thompson was recognized for applying his excellent organization, coordination, and Agile/Scrum skills to the team’s overall performance with Daily Stand-up, Sprint Demos, Planning and Retrospectives, Product Backlog Refinement. He also was instrumental in the introduction and implementation of Spikes, GitLab Project Milestones and Burndown Charts, resulting in process improvements and requirement assessment efficiencies. Thompson was instrumental in implementing the Agile Methodology across all software projects on the JOIST contract in fiscal year 2019. This is a significant benefit to the customer as it fosters integration discussions, identifies developmental issues early, and provides project artifacts in accordance with the FOD Software Management Plan (FODSMP). His efforts are a significant benefit to the customer as they resulted in the team accurately tracking 38 projects in fiscal year 2019, a 760% increase over fiscal year 2018. The MAPI OFT (Orbital Flight Test) Team was presented the Silver Bear Award for their dedication in processing open work variances requests in preparation for Boeing’s CST-100 OFT. In preparation for the first flight of this new ISS Visiting Vehicles, the four member team, Steven Benoit, Julie Sutton, Mark Riedel of ARES, and Brandy Cox of ARES, processed what the ISS Program Manager identifies an “unprecedented amount of open work.” The standard processing of a variance request takes 4 to 5 weeks. The MAPI Team had to find innovative ways to help Boeing and NASA meet the launch goal. This required breaking with established processes and expectations in order to facilitate quicker reviews. The dedicated MAPI Team worked long hours including during holidays and vacation time to give Boeing the best opportunity for success. The MAPI Team processed a total of 40 Boeing Variance Requests for OFT. This is at least double compared to the other first flight vehicles. Due to Boeing’s discovery of issues so close to flight, 3 were in process at SORR, 4 additional ones were identified after SORR. To allow Boeing to meet their very aggressive launch date, the MAPI Team processed the final 7 requests with a 1 week review and a couple days to finalize the documentation. Despite the much expedited timeline, quality of work was uncompromised. OFT would not have been approved to fly without the closure of this work. The Northrop Grumman Innovations Systems (NGIS) Cargo and Logistics Team was presented the Silver BEAR award for their exceptional contributions throughout the Northrop Grumman (NG-12) final late load operations for the first Commercial Resupply Services 2 (CRS2) mission. The two member team of David Held and Curtis Gilmore led the effort managing the transportation plan for getting Space Station payloads to and from the launch pad which included development of the NG-12 choreography presentation and launch scrub simulations. This plan included providing training for battery hookups and swaps for powered payloads (i.e. Rodent Research) and briefing the drivers transporting the payloads from the labs to the launch pad. They assumed full responsibility for cargo receiving, inspection, and staging for installation at the pad and making the necessary adjustments to the overall cargo transportation plan to ensure the best use of Northrop Grumman resources. NG-12 was the first flight requiring significant new capabilities as part of the CRS2 contract. NGIS added capability to conduct final cargo load at Launch-24 hours with 24 hour scrub capability. This was a significant new capability that expanded the type of payload and cargo NGIS could carry/manifest on the Cygnus spacecraft. Held and Curtis showed exceptional knowledge of the Cygnus launch site cargo operations and were entrusted with nominal and critical late load operations. The customer stated that their “amazing organizational skills and calm demeanor were invaluable” to the highly successful NG-12 mission. The Configuration and Data Management (CDM) team supporting Orion’s Launch Abort System (LAS) Systems Acceptance Review/ Design Certification Review (SAR/DCR) for Artemis I was presented the Silver BEAR Award for their dedication and support in meeting critical mission milestones. The 3 person team of Celeste Villareal, Ted Viar and Patrick Alvarez supported all aspects of preparation and execution including support of SAR Technical Coordination Meetings (TCM’s), support to real time update of SAR wikis and report generation. Their support contributed to the successful completion of an integrated evaluation of the Artemis I Launch Abort System. Their work led to NASA’s determination that the system meets Program design certification criteria, is built in accordance with the design, and supports mission objectives resulting in the transfer and acceptance of the Orion System from the Prime Contractor to NASA. The team performed this substantial amount of support while continuing their normal duties and preparing the wiki for the start of Orion Production Operations Contract (OPOC) operations. Their hard work, dedication to configuration and data management detail and ability to bring team members together on key issues helps drive forward program processes toward successful Artemis I flight. Victoria (Tori) Scott was presented the Silver BEAR Award for her outstanding job in managing a high volume of Data Requirements List/Descriptions (DRD) and procedural documentation while innovating new streamline procedures for the Mission Support Operations Contract (MSOC) Tech Pubs team. Scott was recognized for her cheery and positive attitude towards the customer. She has always demonstrated an extremely high level of professionalism. As an example, Tech Pubs was recently contacted by the Documentation group from Space Vehicle Mockup facility (SVMF) to manage approximately 230 SVMF documents by assigning MSOC document numbers and placing them in the MSOC template. Scott organized the data and was able to determine which issues were top priority, and initiated the process with the customer. Only through her excellent planning and organizational abilities and skills was she able to lead this task without impact on her current workload. Her years of experience in Documentation have provided her a wealth of knowledge, making her an excellent resource for new MSOC employees as well as the customer. She has utilized her extensive job knowledge to help the Tech Pubs team prioritize their deliverables and improve communication with the authors thus ensuring early and on-time delivery. Scott has been instrumental in providing a Technical Publications error free delivery of 161 deliverables. The Barrios Employee Awards and Recognition or BEAR Award recognizes quality performance and outstanding support of customer and company goals. Up to one percent of the current number of employees can receive the Silver Award each quarter. Silver award winners automatically qualify for the annual Gold award which is presented at an annual awards and recognition reception.

Below are some pictures from some of the award winners enjoying their treats that came with their awards presentations.

Patrick Alvarez

Steven Benoit

Tori Scott

Julie Sutton

Guy Thompson

About Us:

Headquartered in Houston, Barrios Technology is a woman-owned AS9100 certified engineering services company specializing in aerospace engineering & science, program planning & control, mission integration & operations, and software engineering & integration. Since 1980, Barrios has demonstrated their corporate mission to be the foremost small aerospace engineering services company providing extraordinary value to our customers, employees and communities. For more information on Barrios Technology, please call 281-280-1900 or visit

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