Pioneer Award

The defense S&T community plays an essential role in supporting military commanders’ development and maintenance of capability and readiness. Within this community there are individuals who demonstrate outstanding and significant technical and social leadership. This Award recognizes their contribution to the defense S&T community.


Robert Abascal, AVT Simulation

The CEO and Founder of AVT Simulation, Robert Abascal, has led AVT to success and been an active member of the S&T community for more then 38 years. Robert began his engineering career with Lockheed Martin before taking the leap to open his own business in 1998. As a technical expert, Robert has participated in Congregational MS&T working groups, supported the National Center for Simulation in Technology Tech Talk Panels, been called to serve multiple times as a simulation SME at the National Summit for the Army Aviation Association of America, and is recognized as an industry leader in innovation and successful business practices by the Orlando Business Journal, INC 5000, Grow Florida, the National Training Simulation Association, and more. Robert is an innovator, a corporate and professional mentor to countless small businesses and individual professionals, and has helped push simulators to new use potential through miniaturization and the embracing of COTS item use. Internationally, Robert supported the critical program for the UK ACTT as well as the RST to the UAE.

Pioneer Award – Robert Abascal, AVT Simulation. Image credit: AVT.


Waymon Armstrong, ECS

Waymon Armstrong is founder and CEO/President of Engineering & Computer Simulations (ECS), a global services and solutions company headquartered in Orlando, Florida, with operations in Huntsville, Alabama; Washington DC; and San Antonio, Texas. A visionary in the simulation and training industry and the Central Florida community since 1997, Armstrong is recognized for his commitment to the MS&T industry and for his ingenuity, entrepreneurial skills, and community leadership. As technology evolved, ECS brought massively multi-player games, mobile technologies, and virtual and augmented reality for military and first responder training to the defense market.

Dr. Rajive Bagrodia, SCALABLE Network Technologies

Dr. Bagrodia is the Founder and CEO of SCALABLE Network Technologies, and an Emeritus Professor of Computer Science at UCLA. At UCLA, he led a research group in mobile computing and parallel and distributed programming that produced simulation systems such as Maisie, Parsec, and GloMoSim. Dr. Bagrodia founded SCALABLE Network Technologies in 1999 in the wake of significant innovations from his research group at UCLA in the theory and practice of performance prediction for large-scale heterogeneous computer and communication systems. Dr. Bagrodia has continued to lead the creation of innovative simulation-based test and analysis and cyber assessment capabilities for the US DoD, including significant Government-Off-The-Shelf (GOTS) tools  such as the Joint Network Emulator (JNE) to model battlefield communication networks and StealthNet, a versatile model of cyber offensive and defensive operations.


  • Adam Breed, Engineering Project Manager of Prepar3D®, Lockheed Martin
  • Marlo Brooke, CEO and Founder, AVATAR Partners
  • Ohannes Younanian, Chief Engineer, General Dynamics Information Technology