Naval Facilities Engineering Command

NAVFAC Atlantic Honors Top Employees for 2018

05/02/19

From NAVFAC Atlantic Public Affairs

NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) -- Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Atlantic honored two of its outstanding employees April 30 for efforts supporting the command’s mission.

For their achievements and contributions to NAVFAC Atlantic during 2018, NAVFAC Atlantic Commander, Rear Adm. Darius Banaji, named Amy VanDercook the Employee of the Year and Jennifer Colton the Supervisor of the Year.

Amy VanDercook, NAVFAC Atlantic Employee of the Year

Amy VanDercook is a physical scientist assigned to NAVFAC Atlantic’s Environmental Restoration Division.  Throughout 2018, she successfully tackled the most complex and highly-visible programs within Environmental Restoration, displaying professional expertise, personal drive and “can-do” attitude that set her apart.

VanDercook managed a total budget of $7.5 million for Historical Radiological Assessments (HRAs) that address the impact and plan cleanup strategies for radiological material at Naval installations in locations from Virginia to Florida, from Indiana to Maryland, and from North Carolina to Guam. Amy led the development of the HRA Toolkit to train project managers and provide consistent guidance for conducting radiological investigations throughout NAVFAC.

VanDercook was a highly effective member of the NAVFAC Atlantic Perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFAS) team, which developed policy to address technical issues and public concerns related to PFAS contaminants that have been newly discovered in drinking water wells across the country.  VanDercook was heavily involved in preparation for public meetings and working with stakeholders including the Environmental Protection Agency, state and local health departments, and elected officials.  She was the acknowledged subject matter expert in developing communication plans, supporting public meetings, and reviewing Navy sampling efforts of public drinking water. VanDercook’s efforts provided consistency in dealing with PFAS issues at numerous installations, including MCAS Cherry Point, NAS Jacksonville, NWIRP Calverton, NALF Fentress, NCBC Gulfport, and NWS Crane.

“Amy accomplished a phenomenal amount of work at the highest level of integrity and professionalism,” said Dan Waddill, leader of NAVFAC Atlantic’s Vieques Restoration Team.  “Her cheerful, can-do attitude wins the respect of all clients and makes her an exceptional colleague. She fully represents NAVFAC at its best.”

Jennifer Colton, NAVFAC Atlantic Supervisor of the Year

Jennifer Colton is a Supervisory Human Resource Specialist assigned as Director, NAVFAC Atlantic’s Total Force Development Division.  A highly motivated leader whose commitment to job accomplishment consistently resulted in productive output of the highest quality, Colton has been the leading force and influence for a number of NAVFAC workforce development initiatives that will impact the entire NAVFAC organization. With a unique ability

to coordinate group efforts toward attainment of common goals, Colton far exceeded requirements of assigned duties and position.

Colton was the driving force behind NAVFAC’s Aspiring Leadership Development Program (ALDP), replacing individual command Emerging Leader Programs of varying quality at each of NAVFAC’s Facilities Engineering Commands.  The NAVFAC-wide initiative provides developmental training and opportunities for current and future leaders. Participants in ALDP participate in a six-month structured program designed to help these future leaders gain the knowledge, skills, ability and confidence to decide if they are the right fit to continue to pursue a leadership role at NAVFAC.

Colton’s leadership was evident through her role in developing the NAVFAC Workforce Development Continuum, a program designed to promote, track, and analyze development needs and strategies throughout all of NAVFAC.  She helped implement a comprehensive learning management system with customized development plans that assessed competency gaps and addresses areas of improvement for employees.  Colton played a critical role in the creation of an accessible competency catalog that encompasses experiential learning, mentoring, coaching and traditional learning activities. Her efforts will improve employee engagement and enhance the value of NAVFAC’s Community Management framework.

“Jennifer Colton is the personification of the model leader and leadership by example,” said Rick Roth, Business Director for NAVFAC Atlantic. “With great intellectual energy and capacity, she has aggressively tackled many demanding challenges and is highly deserving of recognition as Supervisor of the Year.”

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