Home : Organization : Article Display
NEWS | July 1, 2022

Performance awards highlight character traits of extraordinary people

By Ms. Jacqueline Boucher

A successful organization needs both creative and agile leaders, common traits among award winners setting the standard for others to follow.

Panels of judges chose five individuals to receive Tobyhanna Army Depot Employee of the Quarter awards. One award winner was subsequently named the Army Materiel Command, U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command, and C5ISR (Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Cyber, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance) employee of the quarter.

Robert Hagenbaugh earned the command- and depot-level awards for actions taken while working as an electronics technician in the Production Engineering Directorate’s Site Installation and SATCOM Engineering Branch.

Co-workers use words like loyalty, duty, respect and integrity to describe Hagenbaugh. In addition, they maintain he guards his teammates jealously, recognizes them regularly and never seeks recognition for himself, according to the nomination package.

“It is truly a great honor and privilege to receive these performance awards,” Hagenbaugh said. “I don’t consider these awards as an individual award, but more of a group award knowing that our team is succeeding and moving in the right direction.”

Hagenbaugh spends a great deal of time traveling the world with his team, providing life cycle engineering and sustainment support for technical control facilities, mission command facilities, strategic command centers and home station mission command centers. His depot career began 20 years ago.

“Tobyhanna is involved in this mission because of Bob’s superior high level communication with site and program office personnel, in addition to a word of mouth reputation spreading throughout the Army of the depot’s ability to support these missions,” said former branch chief Shawn Smith. “Bob’s work ethic and tireless dedication to duty, team and mission set the standard and is contagious within the branch.”

Jeremy Kuzmiak and Hagenbaugh were selected Tobyhanna Army Depot’s Employees of the Quarter, for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2021, junior and senior categories, respectively.

Kuzmiak is a firefighter recognized for work accomplished while assigned to the Installation Services Directorate’s Fire and Emergency Services Branch.

The depot fire department recently completed a process known as Community Risk Assessment and Standards of Cover (CRASOC). The result is a comprehensive report that provides an assessment of risk as well as sets baseline and benchmark performance goals for the organization.

“Kuzmiak surpassed expectations analyzing and updating more than 100 pages of information well ahead of the deadline,” said Daryl Gebhardt, fire chief. “He volunteered to take on this massive project while still performing his regular duties.”

Kuzmiak was able to compose the report using skills he learned during a fire department analytics class. That, combined with years of additional training and hands-on experience helped the firefighter break down emergency response operations to show areas where the fire department excels or needs improvement.

Officials noted the 14-year Tobyhanna veteran also shares knowledge gleaned from authoring the CRASOC with his co-workers, according to Gebhardt.

“This award means a great deal to me and I want to thank all the people who helped me along the way,” Kuzmiak said. “I couldn’t have done it without them.”

Robert Knecht, Joseph Twardowski and Steven Warner were selected Tobyhanna Army Depot’s Employees of the Quarter for the first quarter of fiscal year 2022, supervisor, senior and junior categories, respectively.

Knecht’s performance as the Systems Integration and Support Directorate’s Welding Branch chief set him apart from his peers. He leads a group of skilled artisans who perform duties here and at multiple temporary duty locations around the world. His responsibilities include managing a robust welding mission by maintaining effective processes and procedures in the shop, tracking training requirements for employees, and providing necessary equipment and supplies to meet customer requirements.

“Robert keeps track of all welding certifications held by shop personnel making sure they are current for AS audit readiness and that Tobyhanna is up to industry standards,” said Hiram Gillyard, Integration Support Division chief. “He also encourages team members to find ways to cut costs by streamlining processes.”

Motivated by unwavering determination and dedication, Knecht keeps a positive mindset no matter what is going on around him, according to Gillyard.

“This award means the world to me having been recognized for the efforts of dedication and commitment to the organization and the warfighter,” Knecht said. “Teamwork is the key to my success. Working together as a team enables us to learn from one another while working toward a common goal.”

A number of employees applauded Twardowski for accomplishments while serving as the C4ISR (Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance) Directorate’s Secure Communications Branch chief.

The individuals who nominated the work leader describe him as someone who goes above and beyond to support the mission. Twardowski is the first person to step up when something needs doing, they wrote on the submission form. Coworkers also noted that the team looks up to the branch chief, saying he sets the example.

Twardowski is responsible for making sure the cost center has everything it needs to meet the monthly production schedules. For instance, he verifies assets are inducted in a timely manner, determines and order parts for individual jobs, schedules employee training, and ensures deadlines are met on time and within budget.

“The team I work with is always doing what they need to do to meet customer expectations,” Twardowski said. “I couldn’t ask for a better group of people to work with. My success is measured by the successes of those around me.”

Warner distinguished himself while working as a firefighter in the Risk Management Division. It was his idea to develop a program to mentor new employees as they adjust and learn new processes and policies in Tobyhanna’s Fire and Emergency Services Branch.

“Steven is an informal leader and mentor among his peers due to his vast knowledge of Tobyhanna and his experience as a firefighter and paramedic,” Gebhardt said. “This program provides peer-to-peer support and mentoring as the employee gains the knowledge, skills and abilities to effectively execute their duties in the most productive manner.”

Warner’s journey of self-improvement consists of activities that develop a person’s capabilities and potential -- personally and professionally. According to his coworkers, the fire captain continuously demonstrates a high degree of knowledge, professionalism and personal courage.

“Steven places the needs of his peers before those of himself and strives to make the department the best through his continued selfless service and contributions to the team,” Gebhardt said.

The new mentoring program ensures that all new employees will get all the pertinent information to be successful at Tobyhanna.

“Throughout my career, I’ve learned that having a strong team helps everyone,” Warner said. “I wanted to make sure that all team members were being trained the same and all areas were being covered so I developed a new employee guide, then assigned senior firefighters to each new hire guide them through the process.”

Recognizing employees for a job well done links to a TOBY2028 objective -- Invest in our People. The objective centers on developing an agile and innovative workforce dedicated to providing the best value to the warfighter. The quarterly awards program identifies and rewards junior-, senior- and supervisor-level employees who, in the performance of their assigned duties, have established a pattern of excellence. Nominations can be submitted by co-workers, who work with the nominee, directly or indirectly, with a minimum of at least four nominators or by an employee’s supervisor.

Winners receive a special parking space for the quarter, On-The-Spot Award and plaque. Winning packages are forwarded to the U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command (CECOM) to compete in their respective categories.

Tobyhanna Army Depot is a recognized leader in providing world-class logistics support for command, control, communications, computers, cyber, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (C5ISR) systems across the Department of Defense. Tobyhanna’s Corporate Philosophy, dedicated work force and electronics expertise ensure the depot is the Joint C5ISR provider of choice for all branches of the Armed Forces and industry partners.

Tobyhanna’s unparalleled capabilities include full-spectrum logistics support for sustainment, overhaul and repair, fabrication and manufacturing, engineering design and development, systems integration, post production software support, technology insertion, modification, foreign military sales and global field support to our joint warfighters.