ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md.– “Shaping the Future Battlefield: Ensuring Overmatch” was the theme as U.S. Army operations research and systems analysts, known as ORSAs, celebrated the 60th Army Operations Research Symposium, known as AORS, from Sep. 13-15. Participants were able to attend in person and virtually via MS Teams.
The U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command DEVCOM Analysis Center, known as DAC, hosted this year’s three-day event, which included 450 registered in person attendees and over 150 virtual attendees. With over 80 presentations, attendees represented more than 20 organizations and eight working groups.
DEVCOM Deputy Commanding General, Brig. Gen. David Trybula, kicked things off with a welcome message:
“All of you are the future of Army analysis. We are at a moment in history where analysis has never been more relevant or had the opportunity to be more impactful.”
This annual event serves as an opportunity for members of the of Army’s analytic community, including U.S. government employees, contractors and approved foreign personnel from U.S. partner nations, to share professional knowledge gained from ongoing and completed analysis. AORS provides an opportunity for analysts to meet with colleagues and exchange experiences and insights sharable to general and international audiences. The symposium also exposes presenters to constructive dialogue to challenge, broaden and expand the perspective of the analytical community. This year, AORS hosted an organizational showcase, the organizational showcase allowed subject matter experts to provide organizational and technological overviews and career advancement opportunities, as well as an opportunity to network with fellow Analysis, Modeling and Simulation Career Program, or CP 36, and ORSAs, who are Functional Area 49 members.
Maj. Gen. Karl Gingrich, director of Program Analysis and Evaluation Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, G-8, served as keynote speaker.
“Our Army is on the brink of revolutionary change,” Gingrich said. “Operations research analysts, civilians, and military alike will be critical leaders in this change. We must be respectfully disruptive— not passive observers— and guide the force toward data-centricity. The technology is available, our senior leaders are demanding it, and our Soldiers require it as they stand ready to face the evolving future threat."
Day 1 also included the ORSA Hall of Fame induction and Army Analysis Awards ceremonies. The ORSA Hall of Fame honors those individuals who have contributed significantly to ORSA over a sustained period, have significantly influenced the ORSA through doctrinal or technical accomplishment and innovative development, and have demonstrated outstanding personal leadership and noteworthy achievements that inspired others in operations research.
This year’s inductees were Ms. Donna Vargas and Mr. Robert Miele.
During Ms. Donna Vargas’ 40-year civilian career, she was hailed as a pioneer in the development and use of models and simulations in combat system analysis and theater level training. Her impressive career led her from a physical scientist up to the Director of TRAC-WSMR, The Research and Analysis Center – White Sands Missile Range.
Starting as general engineer intern at the U.S. Army Materiel Command, Mr. Robert Miele’s 31-year career culminated in serving as the Executive Technical Director/Deputy to the Commander, U.S. Army Test and Evaluation Command from 2016-2020.
In reference to Miele’s career, Maj. Gen. James Gallivan, ATEC commanding general, said, “He’s a leader first; he’s a mentor, and he is a recognized subject matter expert across the Army. When Robert Miele speaks, people listen, because they are going to learn and get the best information available.”
Award Recipients for the U.S. Army Analysis Awards:
· AORS 2021 Best Presentation – Career Path Design Policy and Military Personnel Readiness, Lt. Col. Jonathan Paynter
· Operational Analysis Award Winner – Mobility Capabilities Requirements Study (MCRS); Colonel Brian P. Ballew, Ms. Shelby V. Baybordi, Mr. Ronald G. Carl, Mr. Dave C. Longhorn
· Dr. Wilbur B. Payne Award Winner – Counter-small Unmanned Aircraft Systems – Mr. Kenneth Duvall, Lt. Col. Kristofer Fosmoe, Maj. Caleb Johnson, Ms. Sara Krondak, Ms. Shelby Lardner, Mr. Arthur Longoria; Maj. Kenneth Wheeler, Dr. Michael Yereniuk.
· 2022 U.S. Army Junior Analyst Award – Dr. Michael Yereniuk (Civilian) and Maj. Charles Gallagher (Military)
Day 2 included an update on what is new and exciting in the Career Program 36 and Functional Area 49.
The second day also consisted of a panel discussion with senior members from the Army: Brig. Gen. Trybula, DEVCOM deputy commanding general; Cody Beck, director of The Research Analysis Center; Steven A. Stoddard, director of the Center for Army Analysis; and Patrick O’Neill, director of DAC.
Topics addressed in the panel discussion included developing, maintaining, and investing in modeling &d simulation; skills needed to stay on the forefront of the Army’s demands; and how Army analytics will align with the new National Defense Strategy and Army Campaign Plan.
In addition to presentations on the final day, attendees were given a chance to explore an interactive hands-on war gaming activity.
The final day concluded with closing remarks from Mr. Patrick O’Neill, director, DAC, “It has been an absolute pleasure to spend the past three days at AORS with the workforce, presenters, and other members of APG. As I attended presentations and spoke to presenters about their research, I was reminded how valuable events like AORS are to our ORSA community. ORSA’s enable knowledge, which enables power.”
AORS 2023 will be hosted by The Research and Analysis Center.
DAC and its many collaborators work to provide the analytic expertise necessary to better integrate modernization priorities and ensure a more informed, adaptable, effective Army as part of the Joint Force. DAC is one of eight science and technology centers of the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command (DEVCOM), an organization dedicated to discovering and developing capabilities that Soldiers need to deter, and when necessary, defeat current and future adversaries. DEVCOM is a major subordinate command of Army Futures Command.