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Tim Sandon receives NASA Outstanding Public Leadership Medal

L-R, David McBride, AFRC Center Director; Tim Sandon; Robert Lightfoot, NASA Acting Administrator.

Congratulations to Tim for receiving the NASA Outstanding Public Leadership Medal (OPLM). This prestigious NASA medal is awarded to non-Government employees for notable leadership accomplishments that have significantly influenced the NASA mission. Sustained leadership and exceptionally high-impact leadership achievements demonstrate the individual’s effectiveness in advancing the Agency’s goals and image in present and future terms.
The following is an excerpt from Tim Sandon’s NASA OPLM citation:

Tim Sandon has done an outstanding job as the i3 Operations Manager for 28 contractor aircrew at Armstrong Flight Research Center. NASA AFRC could not do their Aeronautics, Airborne Science and Science Exploration’s mission without its contractor aircrew. Mr. Sandon is respected by the aircrew he leads, as well as the i3 and AFRC management.

In order to meet increased demands for additional science aircrew due to increased project load and retirements, Mr. Sandon worked with the i3 lead at his headquarters and was instrumental in the hiring, in-processing, training and oversight of 10 new contractor aircrew in the past year. Mr. Sandon and the upper management team from i3 worked to provide the chief of the AFRC aircrew an incredible group of talented aircrew, and managed to get them hired in time to meet increasing demand, insuring that no missions were canceled for the lack of aircrew.

Contractors can sometimes be put in difficult situations when the government program managers push too hard. The contractor aircrew do a great job of balancing the mission with safety and work-life balance. When the situation gets too difficult, Tim is quick to assist, bringing the issue to the attention of the AFRC Chief Pilot, helping to provide ideas for solutions to resolve any conflict.

As the Chief Flight Engineer for NASA AFRC Tim works tirelessly to recruit and train top talent for our Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA) aircraft as well as the DC-8. Tim finds incredibly experienced and talented flight engineers and provides outstanding training. The knowledge of the aircraft that these flight engineers possess is critical, flying dynamic missions on older aircraft.

Mr. Sandon embodies the ideals we like to see in a contractor leader. He values the NASA mission and inspires his people to work toward the common goal of mission accomplishment. He is adept at working with his people, his management and NASA AFRC aircrew management to get the very best out of his people for the fulfillment of NASA missions.

Congratulations Tim! Well done!