By Merv BrokkeJune 10, 2013
REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. (June 10, 2013) -- A recently retired Army research scientist was the focus of honors June 7 during ceremonies here.
The Army honored senior research scientist Dr. Jester (Jay) Loomis during a small ceremony with family and coworkers hosted by Eric Edwards, U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development and Engineering Center director.
Loomis's award, signed by Secretary of the Army John M. McHugh, was the Decoration for Exceptional Civilian Service and it is the highest Department of the Army honorary award granted by the Secretary of the Army.
One phrase summed up the award and best described why Loomis was deserving of this honor, "pattern of excellence."
"The most important part of this award, when you look at the requirements to get this award, is an established pattern of excellence; I don't think there is anyone who would disagree that what Dr. Loomis has done over his 30-plus years was to absolutely establish a pattern of excellence. He has touched many lives personally and professionally," Edwards said.
While serving as the Senior Research Scientist for Radar Frequency Sensors, U.S. Army AMRDEC, U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command from April 1992 to October 2012, Loomis led a science and technology program that improved deployed systems, expanded the technology base and created new joint programs to fill gaps in U.S. defense capability.
As an internationally recognized expert in missile and sensor systems, he influenced technical developments in radar, antennas, missile seekers and integrated weapons systems and made significant contributions to every currently fielded Army radio-frequency guided missile system.
Loomis thanked everyone and left them with a message of gratitude and encouragement.
"I had a conversation many years ago with an associate from MIT. He described people in two types of categories. He said, 'there's hunters out there and there are skinners.' In many respects, my career, particularly toward the latter stages, became one of being a hunter. And that is going out and finding out the work that perhaps needed to be done and looking to see how perhaps it could be solved.
"But it never got solved without an enormous amount of skinners back at the ranch that were really working to get all the efforts done to bring the ideas to fruition and work out the details. I see so many of the skinners who are going to become hunters, probably in their own rights, who are really responsible for a lot of the success that I was able to enjoy," he said.
Loomis continues to support the AMRDEC workforce in a consulting role through the University of Alabama in Huntsville.
AMRDEC is part of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, which has the mission to develop technology and engineering solutions for America's Soldiers.
RDECOM is a major subordinate command of the U.S. Army Materiel Command. AMC is the Army's premier provider of materiel readiness -- technology, acquisition support, materiel development, logistics power projection, and sustainment -- to the total force, across the spectrum of joint military operations. If a Soldier shoots it, drives it, flies it, wears it, eats it or communicates with it, AMC provides it.