By Denise Emsley, Naval Facilities Engineering Command Hawaii
PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM (NNS) -- Naval Facilities Engineering Command Hawaii honored two of its own Nov. 19 at a command gathering held at Hickam Theater, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.
Selected from a competitive pool of engineers and architects, Mr. Cey Murakami, of Mililani, Hawaii and Lt. Steven Ferrara, of Seekonk, Massachusetts, were identified as the best in their field for 2015.
"Each year we canvas our phenomenal engineering workforce to acknowledge two of the many who have made significant contributions to our command, the Navy and the Marine Corps in Hawaii," said NAVFAC Hawaii Commanding Officer Capt. Dean Tufts. "I am proud to say that we are never at a loss for exceptional candidates and Cey and Steve represent the absolute best we have as our 2015 Engineers of the Year."
Murakami is the command's civilian 2015 Engineer of the Year. His selection was due to his leadership, technical abilities and facilities engineering support to Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. Murakami's knowledge of design-build and design-bid-build processes enabled his branch to adapt to a new organizational model. This model integrated both Navy and Air Force requirements supporting the Joint Base engineering concept and develops and manages designs for projects involving multiple disciplines and a wide range of military facilities including waterfront, airfield and high security facilities.
"Murakami's ability to identify resource conflicts, stay on top of his team's and customers' needs and make good business decisions allowed the most efficient and effective use of those resources," said NAVFAC Hawaii Project Management Engineering Branch Head Mike Williams.
In 2014, he managed and led his team to complete more than two hundred projects, exceeding an estimated $40 million, even with challenges imposed by government shutdown and furloughs during 2013 and reductions in manpower and resources of 2014. With his knowledge of base facilities, acquisition methods and design procedures, Murakami developed acquisition strategies for hundreds of projects, provided advice to senior leadership for prioritization and sequencing of projects and management of customer expectations.
Murakami graduated from the University of Hawaii with a Bachelor and Master of Science in Civil Engineering and is a registered Professional Engineer in the state of Hawaii.
The command's military selection for 2015 Engineer of the Year is Lt. Steven Ferrara. As Lead Construction Manager in the Facilities Engineering and Acquisition Division, Ferrara led efforts for the $156 million National Oceanographic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Inouye Regional Center project located on historic Ford Island.
"This project had substantial design and construction challenges," said NAVFAC Hawaii Facilities Engineering and Acquisition Division Deputy Lt. Cmdr. Marc Nelson. "Ferrara's engineering influence resulted in a significant improvement in mission readiness for NOAA as it consolidated many facilities into a single facility, maximizing synergy and capitalizing on capabilities in the Pacific."
For the NOAA project, Ferrara streamlined the process for tracking of 22 customer requested change orders, 465 design change orders, and 3,000 requests for information, to reduce and minimizing delays. His direct involvement with the mitigation of $25 million in existing changes and $8 million in potential future claims allowed for an accurate financial outlook to support future program decisions.
Additionally, his technical expertise and communication ability improved construction execution for customer commands.
Ferrara has a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Northeastern University, Massachusetts and a registered Professional Engineer in the state of Michigan.
Both Murakami and Ferrara will be considered for the NAVFAC Headquarters Engineer of the Year as well as compete for the National Society of Professional Engineers Federal Engineer of the Year Award.