Friday, November 4, 2011

A Legend Retires…

Sandra Thomson, Ph.D., chief of ECBC’s Toxicology and Obscurants Division, retired on Sept. 30 after 32 years of service.

The Research and Technology (R&T) Directorate recognized Thomson’s contributions during a brief celebration held in her honor. “Sandi asked that we not hold any events for her,” said Steve Lawhorne, R&T deputy director. “But we had to ignore this request.”

Lawhorne presented Thomson with awards and letters, including a star note from MG Nick Justice, commanding general of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, a Commander’s Award and a Certificate of Retirement.

“She managed complex programs with highly hazardous materials, led a culture of safety in the workplace, and delivered the data needed to protect our soldiers and fellow workers. We’ve always looked at Sandi as the beacon for our safety program,” said Lawhorne.

“I was fortunate to work with Sandi on a project early on,” said Wienand. “Early as a young lieutenant, I learned to lead, follow or get out of the way. When I worked with Sandi, most of the time I did the latter two of those. When it’s about safety for employees or soldiers, she’s going to lead. She would fight for her team, for safety, for the workers in the lab, and for the soldiers. Thank you, Sandi, for your leadership here and all the people who are safer because of you.”

Wienand presented Thomson with an ECBC coin and a historical photo collage.

“The most important thing to me is to take care of the people – they are like family. That goes hand in hand with safety. You can’t have a productive workplace without safety. It’s important to speak truth to power,” Thomson said.

“We hope you will remember us. We will certainly remember you for the many, many good things you’ve done here,” said Lawhorne.

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