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NEWPORT NEWS, Va., Oct. 21, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Huntington Ingalls Industries (NYSE:HII) announced today that 10 employees were among those recognized for achievements in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) during the 18th annual Women of Color STEM Conference. Eight award-winners represented the company’s Ingalls Shipbuilding division, and two represented HII’s Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS) division.

Dorothy Shaw, Ingalls’ manager of community relations and government affairs, was awarded the Community Service Award for using technology to improve access to jobs and educational opportunities and for boosting understanding of technology’s potential to improve access to useful services, resources and information. Shaw has worked at Ingalls for 42 years in a variety of human resources jobs. A Jackson State University alumna, she has also been recognized with South Mississippi’s Outstanding Community Leader Award and as one of Mississippi’s Top 50 Business Women.

Lakela Lofton received a Special Recognition Award for her nomination in the managerial leadership category. Winners in this category were honored for demonstrating career choices that serve as an example of moving beyond what are considered traditional roles for women. Lofton, a 17-year veteran of NNS, is a nuclear engineering manager for NNS’ Kesselring site project in Ballston Spa, N.Y. She earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Hampton University and an MBA from Florida Institute of Technology.

Four HII shipbuilders were recognized with Technology All-Star awards, which recognize accomplished women of color from mid-level to advanced stages of their careers who have demonstrated excellence in the workplace and in their communities. They are:

  • Cynthia Bowles, a support and integration manager at Ingalls. During her 29 years of experience at the shipyard, Bowles has served in various management roles for various ship programs, including the DDG 51 destroyer and LHA 7 amphibious assault ship programs. She holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Tuskegee University.

  • Cynthia Griffin, a paint superintendent at Ingalls. A 27-year shipyard veteran, Griffin began her career as a painter’s apprentice and has expanded her areas of expertise into job planning and scheduling, production control, process improvement, and safety compliance.

  • Arlene Grimme, support administrator at Ingalls. With five years of experience, Grimme is responsible for managing all manufacturing processes and procedures. She leads an internal operations publication that focuses on safety, quality and procedural compliance and assists with the processing of worker’s compensation claims.

  • Deborah Stanton, a foreman at Ingalls. Stanton has 37 years of experience, including 21 years in operations management. She also assists with the supervision and placement of employees on temporary light duty assignments and conducts in-house audits for compliance with procedures for recording time and labor.

Four HII shipbuilders received Technology Rising Star awards, which recognize young women who are helping to shape technology for the future. They are:

  • Debbie Braudis, a project manager at Ingalls. During her 37-year career at Ingalls, Braudis has served in various roles in the areas of operations and supply chain management. She holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering technology from the University of Southern Mississippi.

  • Chara Clancy, a financial analyst at Ingalls. An eight-year shipyard veteran, Clancy has worked in accounting and finance and, most recently, in the supply chain management division. She holds a bachelor’s degree in banking and finance from the University of Southern Mississippi and an MBA from William Carey University. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in accounting from the University of Phoenix.

  • Veronica Nance-Crossley, a welding foreman at Ingalls. Nance-Crossley has worked for the shipyard for more than 15 years. She is a graduate of Ingalls’ structural welding apprenticeship and waterfront co-op programs and earned a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering at the University of Southern Mississippi. A member of the U.S. Armed Forces, Nance-Crossley participated in Operation Iraq Enduring Freedom in 2005 and Operation New Dawn in 2011.

  • Danyelle Saunders, a senior facilities project engineer at NNS. Saunders, a 15-year shipbuilder, has first-hand knowledge and experience managing multiple renovation projects and complying with building code requirements while providing innovative and cutting-edge space utilization solutions. She holds a bachelor’s degree in architectural engineering from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University.

The recipients were honored during the Women of Color STEM Conference, held Oct. 17-19 in Dallas. The conference provides a national forum to celebrate the achievements of women in STEM, creates an environment for professional networking, and offers opportunities for role models to develop and nurture professional mentoring relationships.

About Huntington Ingalls Industries

Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) designs, builds and maintains nuclear and non-nuclear ships for the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard and provides after-market services for military ships around the globe. For more than a century, HII has built more ships in more ship classes than any other U.S. naval shipbuilder at its Newport News Shipbuilding and Ingalls Shipbuilding divisions. Employing more than 37,000 in Virginia, Mississippi, Louisiana and California, HII also provides a wide variety of products and services to the commercial energy industry and other government customers, including the Department of Energy. For more information, visit:


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