REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. -- U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development and Engineering Center's Dr. Everett Roper was recently awarded the Professional Achievement in Government Award at the 2017 Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Black Engineer of the Year Awards Gala. The award was presented by Commander of the U.S. Army Materiel Command Gen. Gus Perna.

Roper's technical support to the Joint Attack Munition Systems Project Office enables the family of launchers and test sets to accomplish its mission objectives. Roper is responsible for providing design, development and technical integration for the launchers and support equipment, which give the Warfighter decisive air-to-ground operations to destroy the enemy.

"Everett is personally responsible for integrating the launcher and support equipment into a cohesive team, providing essential products that can be globally employed against a highly adaptive threat," said Carol Holcomb, director, Systems Engineering, JAMS Project Office.

"I enjoy the challenge and character development that each day brings. Each unexpected problem helps to shape and define my character while helping me to develop skills that enable me to take on future problems. Each success is rewarding and an encouraging reminder that this is my calling. Yet, the satisfaction of knowing that what I do helps to protect the Warfighter, my country and my family as well is gratification enough," said Roper, assistant product manager, JAMS Project Office.

Dubbed the "Oscars of the STEM Industry," the BEYA Gala is marked with speeches, stories and videos. The BEYA Awards Gala, which is part of the BEYA Conference, is held annually in Washington, D.C. The goal of the conference is to create connections between students, educators and STEM professionals, while facilitating partnerships with individuals and their local STEM resources.

According to beya.org, "What makes BEYA so valuable is that they select the best of the best and recognize the work of a lifetime. Each year, BEYA judges select nominees from a talented pool of promising college students, new hires, mid-career professionals and managers, executives, innovators and inventors." BEYA honorees are selected from hundreds of nominations submitted by employers around the world.

At the U.S. Army Materiel Command exhibit, the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command showcased Army science and technology capabilities; the twenty-three technical specialists that manned the exhibit discussed research opportunities, working to attract and recruit potential STEM employees. U.S. Army Communication-Electronics Command and Army Contracting Command representatives from Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md. also attended the event.

"This is an opportunity for AMC and the command to reach out to young talent and to continue to build the bench that we have within RDECOM and all the great work in terms of our science and technology and research and development efforts," said Maj. Gen. Cedric T. Wins, RDECOM commanding general. "It's a pleasure to be a part of this effort and to see all the great work that's on display here, and to meet and talk with young, talented, up and coming, recent graduates and young professionals and young engineers who are still in school and thinking about a career in STEM."

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The U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development, and Engineering Center is part of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, which has the mission to provide innovative research, development and engineering to produce capabilities for decisive overmatch to the Army against the complexities of the current and future operating environments in support of the Joint Warfighter and the Nation. RDECOM is a major subordinate command of the U.S. Army Materiel Command.