Contract Specialist Spotlight on NAVFAC Washington's Marjorie McLaughlin

04 May 2022
Marjorie McLaughlin is a contract specialist who serves Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command (NAVFAC) Washington at Joint Base Andrews.

Marjorie McLaughlin is a contract specialist who serves Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command (NAVFAC) Washington at Joint Base Andrews.

McLaughlin credits the best part of her job as riding on the installation and actually seeing the fruits of her labor, which includes projects like, the U.S. Naval Academy’s Cyber Security building and Chapel Repair, Joint Base Andrews’ Hospital and Dental Clinic, and the new Presidential Aircraft Hangar. Beyond Joint Base Andrews and US Naval Academy, McLaughlin also serves as a contract specialist for construction on other installations in the National Capital Region, like Joint Base Anacostia Bolling.

“I am proud of my accomplishments with NAVFAC and the people who contributed to me enhancing my contracting skills.” said McLaughlin. “It is totally amazing to work with so many talented construction professionals.”

Born and raised on the Southeast side of Chicago, Ill., McLaughlin received an education from Chicago Public and Catholic schools. She decided to follow her father and older brothers’ footsteps by joining the high school JROTC which led her to enlist in the United States Air Force (USAF) after graduation.

During her military career, she served as a personnel specialist and was selected to serve on the United States Honor Guard team during Operation Desert Shield.

“It was everything to me to honor our fallen soldiers and have the opportunity to thank their loved ones for their service. That experience gave me a new perspective to our warfighters and contracting gives me the opportunity to continue supporting our warfighters.”

It was during her military career that she met her husband, Nelson. He also served and retired from the USAF, and now works as a civil servant on Joint Base Andrews where 29 years ago they started their family.

“Sometimes I chuckle because my children were both born at the Joint Base Andrews Hospital and it is now my job to ensure this same hospital is contractually demolished.”

After serving 10 years in the military, McLaughlin was employed by a Veteran-owned and Small Business company. She later accepted employment with the Department of the Navy, processing classified contracts; working contract policy; and assisting in building some of the world’s greatest technologies which supports the warfighters.

In 2016, she joined NAVFAC Washington at the Naval Academy before joining the Joint Base Andrews Team.

“It has been a totally amazing opportunity to work with so many talented construction professionals because we all work hard together and we get our mission accomplished.”

During the last past year, she single-handedly processed 77 procurement changes into 26 modifications valuing over $10 million dollars to support ROICC JBA mission. This amazing task was accomplished while dealing with a retiring contracting officer, departing program analyst, and many computer systems changes. McLaughlin is thankful for the people that assisted her in performing task outside of her range during this time.

“It is not a career field for everyone, as it requires detail oriented and proactive people with the ability to enhance their knowledge of the federal acquisition regulation and contracting policy which are necessary to evolve.”

McLaughlin works hard but also enjoys the simple life. She relishes spending time with her family in the kitchen, cooking up tasty creole dishes; working in the yard to prepare for family gatherings; volunteering to support her local homeowners association to improve her community; and working on home improvement projects to maintain her property value.

But as a mother, she feels truly blessed and takes great pride in her family. She and her husband are proud of their children and their career choices. Their son followed in his parents’ career path by becoming an Airman in the USAF. Their daughter completed her studies at Salisbury University, becoming a civil servant for the Department of Veterans Affairs.

“We raised two of the most impressive young adults a parent could desire. I was taught by my parents that you get out of your children what you deposit into your children.”

McLaughlin is also proud of her accomplishments with NAVFAC and the people who contributed to enhancing her contracting skills.

“It is totally amazing to work with so many talented construction professionals.”

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