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W144A·TOPICAL PLENARY: How the Coast Guard Yard promotes access, innovation and excellence in engineering through hands-on experience
Topical Plenary Ocean and Marine Division (OMED), Energy Conversion, Conservation and Nuclear Engineering Division (ECCNE), Instrumentation Division (INST), and Multidisciplinary Engineering Division (MULTI)
Wed. June 28, 2023 8:00 AM to 9:00 AM
Room 322, Baltimore Convention Center
Session Description

Free ticketed event
The Coast Guard Yard provides complex renovation, repair and rehabilitation work to Coast Guard cutters and other vessels within the National Fleet. This requires skilled tradespeople, planners, project managers and engineers to work closely together throughout the planning, design, production and commissioning phases of over 200 projects per year. The hands-on nature of the Yard's work provides instant feedback mechanisms for the in-house engineering staff and excellent professional development opportunities within the engineering disciplines for the entire Yard crew. This session will discuss how the Yard's integrated workforce, project variety, and the proximity to the work enables access to engineering jobs, innovation within engineering project execution and excellent practical engineering learning opportunities. Specific topics will include Yard internship programs at local high schools and colleges, the pipeline from industrial trades to engineering technician positions, the Yard's technology roadmap, and success stories.

  1. David Obermeier

    Captain David Obermeier, assumed command of the U.S. Coast Guard Yard on July 14, 2022. He is the 44th Commanding Officer in the Yards 123-year history.Captain Obermeier previously served as the Industrial Manager at the Coast Guard Yard, the only shipbuilding and repair facility of the U.S. Coast Guard. The Yard employs over 500 civilian employees and generates annual revenues over $110M. Prior to his CG Yard assignments, Captain Obermeier served as Deputy Program Manager for the Coast Guard’s Boat Acquisition Program, where he managed six acquisitions with a combined life cycle cost estimate of over $3B. He assumed that position following the System Design and Management (SDM) Fellowship at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he focused on sustainability and managing the complexity of socio-technical projects.

    Previous tours include the Business Operations Division Chief at the Shore Infrastructure Logistics Center(SILC), Facilities Engineer at Base Portsmouth, Supervisor at Sector Field Office (SFO) Cape Hatteras, Designer/Planner at Civil Engineering Unit (CEU) Providence, Business Manager at Base Boston’s Industrial Division, and Damage Control Assistant on USCGC POLAR STAR.

    Captain Obermeier holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Engineering from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, a Master of Science in Civil Engineering and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Illinois, and Master of Science in Engineering and Management from MIT. He is a registered Professional Engineer (PE) in his home state of Rhode Island, and holds credentials as a Project Management Professional (PMP), Certified Facility Manager (CFM), Certified Energy Manager (CEM), and DHS Level III Program Manager. Captain Obermeier was awarded the Society of American Military Engineers (SAME) Oren Medal in 2015 for Excellence in Civil Engineering and the Senator John Chafee Humanitarian Award in 2005 by the Rhode Island Federal Executive Council for mentoring and tutoring at-risk youth.