2017 INSA Achievement Award Recipients

Janna Tarman

Joan A. Dempsey Mentorship Award

Janna Scott-Tarman
Deputy Division Chief, Counterintelligence Analysis
Defense Intelligence Agency

Serving as DIA’s acting division chief for counterintelligence (CI) analysis the past year, Janna Scott-Tarman fostered a collaborative environment in which teamwork and mentorship directly resulted in mission impact. Treating each analytic product as a unique training opportunity, Ms. Scott-Tarman helped analysts understand audience, policy implication, and strategic context to great effect, as the division produced 12 of the agency’s 20 most-read intelligence products, two of which contributed to the redirection of $100 million in acquisition funding. Other products prompted DIA and combatant command operational changes and resulted in DIA CI analysis contributing regularly to Presidential travel planning for the first time.

Leading a production program with analysts across four regional intelligence centers and two directorates, Ms. Scott-Tarman’s mentorship extended to other division chiefs and senior intelligence officers across DIA, helping them understand the counterintelligence mission. She also established a CI analysis awards program at DIA recognizing contributions from partners across the Intelligence and Department of Defense Communities. Ms. Scott-Tarman’s empathy, sincerity, and professionalism has strengthened division unity and morale, and earned the resounding praise and respect of subordinates, superiors, and colleagues across the IC and DOD Communities.

 
Sara Jamshidi

Sidney D. Drell Academic Award

Sara Jamshidi
Graduate Research Assistant
Penn State University – Applied Research Laboratory

Ms. Jamshidi has contributed richly to the transdisciplinary research and development team for ARL’s Autonomy, Perception and Cognition Department, helping pursue a revolutionary approach of cognitively advanced autonomous systems. She is not only developing a fundamental understanding of how neural networks work, but how to build them in a ‘sparsely supervised’ or ‘weakly reinforced’ manner. Her work is fundamental to the team’s effort to enable cognitively advanced autonomous systems capable of reasoning and making decisions in real-world applications. The technical merit of such work holds tremendous potential for the intelligence and national security communities.

Beyond her domain expertise in abstract mathematics and category theory addressing the difficult symbol grounding problem required to make intelligent, reasoning systems in the real world, Ms. Jamshidi has enriched the team with leadership qualities expected more of top tenured faculty than a senior graduate student. She leads diverse teams of mathematicians, cognitive psychologists, computer scientists and engineers of various disciplines with a personally approachable and unifying personality, significantly contributing to teams’ capability to address hard research questions. Sara continues to bring connections to the research group well beyond the University and nurture the type of diverse research partnerships that are required to address national security challenges.

 

Richard J. Kerr Government Award

Thomas D. Smith
Insider Threat Program Manager
U.S. Department of the Treasury

Thomas Smith has dramatically advanced the capabilities of Treasury’s Insider Threat Program, earning the trust and buy-in of senior leadership at all levels of the Department. Tom brings a balanced approach to accomplishing the shared mission and vision through his strong understanding of national security and counterintelligence issues. He encouraged collaboration across Treasury and Intelligence Community (IC) partners to identify and operationalize new data feeds and analytic capabilities in support of the program. He also authored Treasury’s Strategy for Mitigating Insider Threats, which sets forth mission objectives and strategic initiatives.

Tom worked with his team to procure and implement a user activity monitoring (UAM) tool across all networks. This action ensured Treasury would not only exceed federally mandated requirements, but be well positioned to proactively identify insider threats to personnel, information, systems, and facilities. His spirit of collaboration effectively and efficiently spanned Treasury to unify the necessary stakeholders, including across IC and non-IC elements of Treasury, to accomplish the mission. Tom’s leadership has greatly contributed to the Treasury’s Insider Threat Program being one of the most forward-leaning programs in the executive branch.

 
Mandy Rogers

Edwin H. Land Industry Award

Mandy Rogers
Systems Engineering Associate
Northrop Grumman Corporation

Mandy Rogers has applied advanced mission engineering and software development concepts to enable greater data integration and analytic efficiency across the Intelligence Community (IC). She implemented User Experience and Agile Development techniques to engage IC analysts and pioneer technical transformations that dramatically reduced the time needed to accomplish certain analytic tasks. Specifically, Mandy’s leadership on programs to help Northrop Grumman mission partners create intelligence products faster and more reliably has saved thousands of man-hours while also improving data fidelity. Mandy also helped spearhead the formation of a mission-driven technology development process known as Innovation, Mission, Partnership, Agile, Collaboration, Technology (IMPACT).

Mandy continually seeks opportunities to understand and improve data, workflow and methodologies for the IC. She is widely respected for her dedication to analysis modernization and her ability to demonstrate new capabilities to disadvantaged users. Mandy is also a mentor to students in the Advanced Cybersecurity Experience for Students Program at University of Maryland – College Park and Christopher Newport University. Her mentorship of the next generation of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) professionals is critical to our nation’s ability to recruit and train top technical talent.

 
Brigid Calhoun

William O. Studeman Military Award

CPT Brigid K. Calhoun
1-503rd Infantry Battalion S2
173rd IBCT (A), U.S. Army

CPT Calhoun’s remarkable skill set as a team leader, mentor, and intelligence officer have significantly enhanced the 173rd’s intelligence war-fighting function (IWfF), distinguishing it as second to none at the brigade level. Serving as the Assistant Brigade S2 and 1-503 Battalion S2, while also coordinating operations across Army, Navy, and Marine intelligence cells, CPT Calhoun has repeatedly brought teams and individuals together to accomplish mission objectives. Her commitment to improving IWfF has been the backbone of the Brigade’s efforts to build relations with partners and allies, establish well-designed operational concepts, and improve interoperability and intelligence sharing. Specifically, she helped strengthen partnerships with the French and Slovakian airborne communities, and even mentored their intelligence officers to ensure successful integration with other NATO members. Her leadership and presence in joint planning efforts and multinational exercises has been a catalyst for organizational readiness.

CPT Calhoun’s own technical and tactical proficiency has commanded the respect of superiors, peers, and subordinates at all echelons and across disciplines, while her extensive knowledge of intelligence and tactical operations has been sought by senior Brigade leadership and joint commanders. CPT Calhoun also dedicates substantial off-duty time to the personal and professional wellbeing of her fellow intelligence officers. CPT Calhoun’s leadership, energy and professional commitment has had unequaled impact on her Brigade, the U.S. Army, and the NATO Alliance. She epitomizes the leadership the U.S. Army requires to meet future challenges.

 

John W. Warner Homeland Security Award

Sean Sullivan
Homeland Security Investigations
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

Mr. Sean Sullivan has provided exemplary intelligence support to ongoing investigations from May 2016 to the present by leveraging the unique law enforcement authorities of Homeland Security Investigations to assist overall USG efforts in combatting the flow of foreign fighters internationally.