28 May Meet Joe, Proposal Manager/Senior Project Coordinator
Today, we get to know Joe, a proposal manager/senior project coordinator at Criterion and veteran of the United States Marine Corps Reserves and the US Air Force.
What branch did you serve in?
I served in the United States Marine Corps Reserves and the United States Air Force.
What was your position?
In the Marines I was initially a computer programmer specializing in COBOL and later in my stint I was involved in bringing some of the first personal computers into service. Later, I made a lateral transfer into the Air Force where I served as a Jet Engine Mechanic working on the Pratt and Whitney F100 engines used in the F-15 fighter.
What was the time frame you were in the military?
- USMC Reserves from Oct 1983 to May of 1986
- USAF from May 1986 to July 1988
What was the most rewarding aspect of serving in the military?
While I could relate many different aspects of my time in the military that would be interesting, the most rewarding part for me was working with and supporting the young Marines and Airmen who were serving with me. As a military dependent, I remember my father (a retired Marine Master Sergeant) inviting young service members to join us on holidays so they would not be alone and lonely. My family has continued this tradition, bringing us great joy and satisfaction.
What lessons learned during your service do you apply to your job now in the civilian sector?
I learned that the values I adopted as a Marine dependent and in Marine Corps boot camp were not something that everyone embraces. I value the team and I believe that working with the team and encouraging individuals to excel are important.
Why did you choose to pursue a job in Government Contracting? How do you like it?
After leaving the military I worked in the private sector in IT. After 18 years at Sprint I was offered an opportunity to join a contract with the USDA. I enjoyed the work and the environment. Later I moved from the government contractor Program Manager side over to corporate support and project management. I enjoy my work here at Criterion and I truly feel like an important member of the corporate team. Even though I work from home full time I feel like an integral member of the team and a valued contributor.
What advice would you give to military members who are about to re-enter civilian life?
It can take a while to adjust to working in the civilian arena and you will find that the chain of command is not what you would like. Find a good company like Criterion, and work to acclimate while keeping yourself squared away. You will do well!
Editor’s Note: Criterion has many veterans and active reservists among its leadership and staff. You will find their profiles in our Life at Criterion category.