ARLINGTON, VA –Office of Naval Research program officer Harold Hawkins received the 2003 Dr. Arthur E. Bisson Prize for Naval Technology Achievement from Chief of Naval Research Rear Admiral Jay Cohen at a ceremony in Arlington, Va, on June 22, 2004.
Dr. Hawkins was nominated for the award based on his role as program officer for the Virtual At Sea Training (VAST) program. VAST provides the ability to maintain critical warfighting competencies by using advanced virtual-reality technologies to create a simulated environment that can be coupled with live-fire training. Dr. Hawkins led the effort to develop a technological solution to the need created by Navy’s departure from ranges such as the Vieques Island Naval Training Range.
Just 33 days after the initial tasking in June 2001, Dr. Hawkins produced a successful concept demonstration of VAST. He oversaw the technology’s transition to Fleet use in naval surface fire support training for deploying carrier battle groups, as well as the initiation of variants to support training, planning, and mission rehearsals in undersea warfare, strike aviation warfare, USMC long-range artillery training, and joint urban operations.
The prize is named in honor of the late Dr. Arthur E. Bisson (1940-1996), who provided a model of principled, effective leadership in transitioning science and technology (S&T) to naval capabilities. In his last assignment, Dr. Bisson was Director of Science and Technology for ONR. He was a prime mover in the integration of all naval S&T in a single command, capable of managing new technology from earliest scientific concepts through prototyping and manufacture. His integrated program provided the Navy with a wholly new paradigm for faster, better coordinated, and more predictable S&T transition to acquisition and operations.