ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, MD -- Flanked by senior U.S. Army leadership and his immediate family, Michael C. Monteleone III was officially inducted into the Senior Executive Service, or SES, during a ceremony on November 1.
"Congratulations to Mike Monteleone. He has my absolute confidence, and we will support him in everything that he does," said Major General Cedric T. Wins, commanding general of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, or RDECOM.
Monteleone was elevated to the SES after serving with distinction in numerous, paramount leadership positions within RDECOM's Communications-Electronics Center, or CERDEC, where he serves as the director of its Space and Terrestrial Communications Directorate, or S&TCD. Previously, he served as acting director of S&TCD, acting chief of S&TCD's Satellite Communications Systems Division and chief the Cyber Security and Information Assurance Division.
In his opening remarks at the ceremony, John S. Willison, executive deputy to the Commanding General of RDECOM said, "I had the opportunity to work with Mike and there is no doubt in my mind that he has the ability to listen, the ability to decide and the ability to inspire. In his new role, I think you will continue to see Mike grow as a leader. I don't think the Army could have picked a better leader for this position."
Monteleone, who grew up in Ocean County, New Jersey, began his 14-year career at CERDEC in 2004 as a staff computer engineer at the S&TCD Satellite Communications Division at Fort Monmouth, New Jersey. He then rose through various technical and leadership positions, including chief of the Tactical Networks Branch where he managed laboratory facilities and integration efforts focused on technology insertion, test and evaluation and life cycle support: including the Warfighter Information Network--Tactical and Persistent Surveillance Systems--Tethered.
Later, he served as chief engineer of the former Global Information Grid Tactical Networks Division and as the principle lead for Quick Reaction Capabilities, deploying important communications and intelligence-enabling capabilities to support Operation Enduring Freedom.
While chief of the CSIA Division, Monteleone was responsible for managing the Defensive Cyber Operations and Information Assurance mission portfolio and customer support services. Under his leadership, CSIA's 175-plus person workforce was responsible for conducting Science and Technology development efforts focused on delivering critical cyber-defense capabilities to the U.S. Army and Joint Services enhancing protection of the military's communications infrastructure.
"Mike has met all of the challenges; he has left a positive impression everyplace he has been, and he has accomplished this while embracing the importance of people,'" stressed CERDEC Director Patrick J. O'Neill. "I have watched Mike during my 10 months here, and I've seen some things that make me think of the seven Army values. I see loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, honor, integrity and personal courage. To me, that spells leadership, and that is what I see Mike living by."
"Mike, that is why you have been chosen to the SES," said O'Neill before administering the oath. "You are battle tested, and you've proven you are up for the challenge of S&TCD director. You are helping plot where we are going and then leading us on that way."
U.S. Secretary of the Army Dr. Mark T. Esper announced Monteleone's appointment on August 19. As defined by the Civil Service Reform Act of 1978, the SES is a cadre of men and women charged with leading the federal government "to ensure that the executive management of the Government of the United States is responsive to the needs, policies and goals of the Nation."
"As CERDEC's mission is so critical to our Army and our impact is realized worldwide, I promise to you Mr. O'Neill, and everybody else in this auditorium, that each and every day I will remain focused on our mission and deliver what our Army expects from me," said Monteleone. "The Army places great importance on the family and uses the phrase, 'the force behind the force.' I would not be standing on the stage today without the support, encouragement and lessons from my family."
At the ceremony, Monteleone was accompanied by his wife, Mary McCudden, parents Michael Jr. and Susan Monteleone, in-laws Mary Pignataro and James McCudden, and cousin Kelly Hamstra. Monteleone's mother affixed the SES pin to his jacket and O'Neill presented him with a SES Certificate. An SES flag was then unfurled as a symbol of his status within the federal service.
Monteleone shared with the audience important lessons that guide his work ethic.
"When I was young, my father and his father, a Korean War veteran, had a construction business, and I would go to work with them," he recalled. "I had a job of picking up nails in a bucket and watching them build a home. Over the years, I learned a very important lesson from them: if you start a job, finish a job; give your all along the way. I was also blessed to learn a lesson from my mother's father, an Army NCO and Korean War veteran, to do the right thing no matter what."
A graduate of New Jersey Institute of Technology and the Naval Post Graduate School, Monteleone holds a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering, a Master of Science in Management and a graduate certificate in Advanced Acquisition. A member of the U.S. Army Acquisition Corp and a graduate of the Army Management and Staff College, Civilian Education System Advanced and Senior Leader Executive Courses, he also holds a Master of Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College.
"I have not looked back since those earlier days and never questioned my career choice. I never had the same day twice, and I have never lost the drive to wake up each and every day to serve as part of the Army team," said Monteleone.
Among the many distinguished honors and awards, Monteleone was twice presented the Commander's Award for Civilian Service and the Army Certificate of Achievement. He also received the CERDEC Employee of the Year in 2013.
"The Army has placed its trust in us at S&TCD to deliver ground-breaking technology that offers future networking and cyber capabilities. We must deliver the future capabilities that enable the Army's Modernization Priorities. This is not simply a challenge; this is our mission," concluded Monteleone. "Today is a new chapter in my career. I am blessed that the Army has put its faith in my abilities, and I fully embrace the incredible responsibility of being appointed as one of the Army's newest SES."
The U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command's Communications-Electronics Center conducts applied research and executes advanced technology development for command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance - or C4ISR - capabilities. RDECOM has the mission to provide innovative research, development and engineering to produce capabilities that provide 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.
Those interested in partnering with RDECOM's Communications-Electronics Center should visit the organization's public website, www.cerdec.army.mil, and click the "Request a TIM," or Technology Interchange Meeting, tab at the top right of the page.