In his remarks at the award ceremonies throughout his 48 years of involvement in them, Dr. Arthur S. Flemming always thanked the honorees for "going the extra mile in service to their country."
2015 Arthur S. Flemming Award Winners
APPLIED SCIENCE & ENGINEERING
DR. MARTHA C. ANDERSON U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Beltsville, Maryland
For her contributions to satellite remote sensing of global cropland and freshwater resources. Dr. Martha Anderson is internationally known for her innovative work in combining information from multiple satellite-based earth imaging systems to enable mapping of water use and crop stress from farm field to global scales. Her mapping algorithms have been implemented operationally by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in support of drought early warning over the North American continent. International partners use Dr, Anderson’s methods for yield prediction, basin-scale water accounting and for monitoring sustainability of agricultural water use in water-insecure regions. As demands for food production continue to increase, these satellite tools will help to assess global crop water productivity – how much yield is produced per drop of water used – and where efficiencies in production might be achieved. Dr. Anderson also serves on the Pecora Award winning Landsat 8 Science Team, and as editor on two scientific journals.
DR. GAYLE HAGLER U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Durham, North Carolina
For her initiation and leadership as an environmental engineer of the Village Green Project (VG P). The VGP is a community-based research effort to demonstrate real-time air monitoring technology, engage the public to learn about local air quality, and collect high-quality data for research. Under Dr. Hagler’s direction the project has developed a highly efficient, solar-powered monitoring platform that incorporates research-grade environmental sensors into a park bench structure that can be located anywhere. This fills an important data gap in air monitoring because the current regulatory network has few stations to measure ambient concentrations of air pollutions in a mid-sized city, limiting the spatial diversity of the data collected. The VGP has contributed significantly to citizen science through the installation of five benches across the country, with another two planned for 2016. Finding innovative ways to measure air pollution in more places is highly desirable to the Agency and will provide a better understanding of local air quality impacts related to nearby sources.
DR. JAMES A. HANSEN U.S. Naval Research Laboratory, Monterey, California
For his unique research focusing on the science of prediction – using uncertainty estimates to improve human forecasts and influence Navy and DoD courses of action. Dr. Hansen creatively engages Navy operational customers to determine requirements, which he channels back into his basic and applied research to provide value-added tactical decision aids to warfighters. His innovative products merge meteorological, intelligence, and operations research information to predict when and where an event will most likely occur, allowing Commanders to assess risk, reduce costs, and enhance safety of operations. Dr. Hansen’s Piracy Attack Rick Surface (PARS) increases the safety of commercial shipping in the Indian Ocean by predicting where pirates will likely operate and suggests how and where to assign forces to counter threats. PARS has been adapted to assist counter drug and human smuggling operations. Dr. Hansen’s Tropical Cyclone Sortie program calculates when and how ships and aircraft should evaluate areas threatened by severe storms. His innovative Ship Routing program applies forecast environmental impacts to Navy ocean voyages to minimize fuel use and reduce the threat of storm damage.
DR. DANIEL S. HUSSEY National Institute of Standards & Technology, Gaithersburg, Maryland
For his pioneering contributions in neutron imaging, which are not only advancing current technologies but are also pushing the frontiers of what is possible. Dr. Hussey is internationally known for developing a highly sensitive neutron phase imaging technique with applications in semiconductor, biology, geology and alternative energy research, and has leveraged this expertise to demonstrate the world' s first practical neutron microscope. This will fill a significant gap in the length scales of current neutron scattering technologies. He has helped advance hydrogen fuel cell technologies and hydrogen storage devices by applying his cutting-edge neutron measurement techniques to overcoming technology barriers related to water/hydrogen transport. The techniques and methods that Dr. Hussey developed are becoming industry standards and are used by most major fuel-cell and battery manufacturers as well as automotive companies, universities, and national laboratories. He has also applied his unique expertise to the development of an innovative method which is contributing to one of the most important physics experiments of our time -the measurement of the electric dipole moment of the neutron.
DR. MATTHEW RODELL National Aeronautics & Space Administration, Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland
For his internationally recognized research as a supervisory physical scientist on remote sensing and numerical modeling of the water cycle, including a groundbreaking study completed in 2015. Starting in 2008, Dr. Rodell led a multi-institutional team of 24 scientists in performing an analysis of the state of the global water and energy cycles during the first decade of the millennium, based on data from modern observing systems and observation-integrating models. In 2015 this work culminated in two revolutionary publications. The associated dataset now serves as a baseline for hydroclimatic variability studies, climate change predictions, and Earth system model evaluations. Dr. Rodell began government service in the Hydrological Sciences Laboratory at NASA/GSFC in 2001, and he has been its Chief since 2012. His seminal research on the use of data from NASA’s Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) mission to estimate changes in terrestrial water storage laid the foundation for hundreds of studies that have followed. Dr. Rodell is also widely known for leading the Global Land Data Assimilation System (GLDAS) project, whose global hydrometerological data fields were downloaded by over 5,700 distinct users in 2014 alone.
LEADERSHIP AND/OR MANAGEMENT
MAJOR CHRISTOPHER D. JEFFERSON National Reconnaissance Office, Cape Canaveral, Florida
For his distinguished accomplishments as Director of Operations at the Office of Space Launch, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida, in 2015. Major Jefferson spearheaded all National Reconnaissance Office satellite vehicle processing, integration, launch operations and launch base infrastructure readiness. Major Jefferson led his team through declaration and initialization of full operational capability for the Eastern Processing Facility. His technical acumen and dogged determination led to this noteworthy achievement for the world’s largest spacecraft processing facility. Major Jefferson initiated thousands of critical tasks, essential plans and procedures and the equipment items necessary to support mission operations in the facility. The impact of his achievement was monumental, as this national resource is expected to meet the Intelligence Community’s spacecraft procession needs for the next 30 years. He and his team made history by integrating operations for four concurrent satellite launches, an unprecedented feat. Major Jefferson planned and executed launch base processing support for agency missions and programs such as the Global Positioning System, Mobile User Objective System, Wideband Global Satellite Communication System and the Space-Based Infrared System. In addition, he led the effort to form the first-ever National Reconnaissance Office partnership with the Air Force and SpaceX.
DR. CHARLES ROMINE National Institute of Standards & Technology, Gaithersburg, Maryland
For his outstanding leadership and management in information technology standards, measurement and research, which have brought him global recognition. Dr. Romine’s efforts have led to the establishment of capabilities that will ensure future U.S. economic success, such as the National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence; the NIST Cybersecurity Framework; and the Joint Center for Quantum Information and Computer Science (with the University of Maryland). He is also responsible for leading the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace and the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education. The NIST Information Technology Laboratory (ITL) has seen its responsibilities grow in scope and importance, and its budget nearly double in the four years of Dr. Romine's leadership. ITL's success can be directly attributed to Dr. Romine's dedication in developing an organization that can successfully recruit the best and brightest staff, and collaborators from around the world, in an extremely competitive environment. Despite the blistering pace of the information technology industry, Dr. Romine has consistently demonstrated the agile and creative leadership necessary to address some of the most complex challenges facing the United States.
MITCHELL ZELLER U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Department of Health & Human Services, Silver Spring, Maryland
For making outstanding contributions to public service as Director of FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products through his work to protect the public health through the regulation of tobacco products in the United States, setting policy and precedent that have national and global implications. Mr. Zeller has exhibited exceptional achievement by leading FDA’s efforts to regulate tobacco products. The FDA is doing unprecedented work in the area of tobacco regulation; no other country has the authority that FDA has to protect the public from the harmful effects of tobacco. Mr. Zeller's specific accomplishments include: building the first ever nationwide enforcement program to reduce youth access to tobacco; working across government to issue a historic regulation to bring all tobacco products under FDA's jurisdiction; fostering the premarket review program for new tobacco products to enable FDA to make the first-ever decisions to remove tobacco products from the market or to allow new product s to come to market if they are in compliance with the law; and leading FDA's launch of nationwide youth tobacco prevention campaigns.
ELLIOTT B. ZENICK, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of the General Counsel, Washington DC
For establishing and leading as Assistant General Counsel the legal team for the Clean Power Plan, EPA’s new program to control greenhouse gas emissions from power plants – one of this country’s most important steps to address climate change. Mr. Zenick assembled and ably managed one of EPA’s largest ever legal teams using a large and diverse group of headquarters and regional attorneys to advise the agency on multiple concurrent rulemakings, and to build EPA legal capacity nationally to assist states during the implementation phase of the rules. His team provided necessary and timely legal advice to support the agency’s development of an innovative approach to achieve significant greenhouse gas reductions by giving states wide latitude in developing plans to reduce such emissions and allowing for important cost-saving flexibilities for power plants. The Plan recognizes the unique nature of the electricity industry and builds on clean energy changes already underway. Mr. Zenick’s team, working with the Department of Justice, also defeated six court cases seeking to block the EPA from issuing the Clean Power Plan.
ARTHUR T. CATTERALL U.S. Department of Justice, Tax Division/Appellate Section, Washington DC
For his outstanding and successful representation as an attorney of the Federal Government before the Courts of Appeals in exceptionally complex tax cases. Mr. Catterall skillfully demystifies intricately designed – and abusive – tax shelters and addresses novel issues, frequently in opposition to the most sophisticated tax practitioners of the private bar. His exceptional work has yielded impressive results. To note just two among several examples, his persistence in arguing that tax under-statement penalties were properly imposed on certain tax shelters helped achieve a unanimous Supreme Court victory in United States v. Woods, 134 S.Ct. 557 (2013), a victory that affected numerous pending cases involving aggregate misstatements of more than $4 billion. In another noteworthy recent case, Amergen Energy, LLC v. United States, 779 F.3d 1368 (Fed, Cir. 2015), Mr. Catterall defeated the corporate taxpayer’s efforts to accelerate over $1.6 billion in future nuclear decommissioning costs. His dedicated and sustained efforts have saved the Treasury hundreds of millions, if not billions, in tax revenues, and have contributed to maintaining the fairness and equity of our tax system.
SOCIAL SCIENCE, CLINICAL TRIALS & TRANSLATIONAL RESEARCH
DR. JENNITA REEFHUIS Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, Atlanta, Georgia
For her accomplishments as a research epidemiologist and outstanding leader within the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, working toward the protection and promotion of the health of pregnant women and babies. Dr. Reefhuis’ commitment to public health has been unwavering. She started her career in the 2001 class of the Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS). During her two years as an EIS officer, she contributed to the post-9/11 anthrax investigations and led the investigation of the association between cochlear implants and meningitis in children. Both investigations led to publications and awards, including the Shepard Award, the highest award for scientific merit at CDC. Dr. Reefhuis is currently the lead for the Epidemiology Team, and the project officer for the Centers for Birth Defects Research and Prevention, a multi-million dollar collaborative study which has resulted in more than 200 manuscripts, including papers by Dr. Reefhuis that were published in the New England Journal of Medicine and the British Medical Journal.
LT. COL. JASON REGULES U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, Frederick, Maryland
For his outstanding achievements as a physician scientist in vaccinology at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases. Lt. Col. Regules completed his specialty training at Ft. Sam Houston , and started his scientific endeavors as an infectious disease physician at USAMRIID . After deploying to Iraq, he transitioned to the Malaria Vaccine Branch at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR), where he led a groundbreaking study that examined a fractional dose approach that resulted in achieving 87% protection against malaria, with 90% protection at 8 months following vaccine boost. This work has helped push the RTS,S vaccine even further into the forefront as a leading vaccine candidate against malaria. Simultaneously, Lt. Col. Regules also initiated the first ever human vaccine trial of the rVSV-Ebola vaccine, leading a multicenter collaborative study between WRAIR and the NIH, and completed the study in 72 days during the largest Ebola outbreak in history. This study was pivotal as it eventually led to the phase 3 study in Guinea showing potential protective efficacy against Ebola virus infection.