Editorial Note: ‘Trailblazers’ is a four-part feature series celebrating the incredible innovation and highly technical accomplishments of Naval Information Warfare Center (NIWC) Atlantic’s female workforce. During this special Women’s History Month tribute, readers are encouraged to learn from the personal experiences of those spotlighted and the unique ways their contributions are blazing new trails for future generations to come. This story is the first installment of NIWC Atlantic’s Trailblazers Campaign.
Jennifer Shauger has been blazing trails for nearly 27 years – and counting – as a leader, manager and engineer.
As deputy director of Logistics and Life Cycle Engineering at NIWC Atlantic, Shauger not only has executive leadership but also operational and technical responsibility for around 1,100 civilian and military personnel with multi-dimensional backgrounds in geographic locations across the globe.
“My motivation is the desire to make a difference,” Shauger said. “I want to be a part of leading the way for NIWC Atlantic and the Navy.”
When Shauger began her studies in applied mathematics at the University of Virginia, she didn’t realize that she would someday embark on a career supporting U.S Navy warfighters. However, soon after she received a Bachelor of Science degree in 1994, she took a position as a contractor supporting the planning, design and execution of shore installations.
Shauger always knew that she wanted to contribute to something bigger than herself, so when the opportunity to serve our nation as a civilian arose, she took it.
The way forward then became clear. “I never looked back,” Shauger said.
Her career in government service began in 1996 at Naval Command, Control and Ocean Surveillance Center, In-Service Engineering, East Coast Division (NISE East), which became Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center (SSC) Charleston the following year.
Shauger went on to earn a master’s degree in engineering management from Old Dominion University in 2004. She accepted a position as manager of Collaborative Technologies and Knowledge Management at then SSC Atlantic in 2008, and became deputy senior manager for Sustainment Engineering and Fleet Support in 2011.
In her current position – which she’s held since 2015 – Shauger leads in the development, delivery and execution of several technical areas of logistics and life cycle engineering services in support of more than 150 command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (C4ISR), as well as business information technology systems and solutions.
“As a team, we strive to improve readiness by ensuring the warfighter’s capabilities are combat ready,” Shauger explained. “I believe my role as a leader is to build a shared consciousness of the outcomes we want to achieve, remove any barriers, empower decision making and enable innovation.”
Shauger, who is part of several diverse, varied teams across the Naval Information Warfare Systems Command (NAVWAR) enterprise, was recently recognized with a Navy Meritorious Civilian Service Award for exceptional leadership. She greatly credits her teammates for her success.
“For those who know me, I am all about relationships. We can’t do anything by ourselves; it takes a team,” Shauger said. “I am so proud of how our teams come to the workplace – wherever that may be – and show up for each other. Each day, they show up for the warfighter, their teammates, their customers, their sponsors, their families. They engage, collaborate, innovate and persevere. They just want to do their best and they have such heart.”
A strong proponent of continuing education, Shauger was certified as an expert in Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) 4 last year. She has also earned Level III certifications in Engineering; Production, Quality and Manufacturing; and Information Technology, in addition to a Level II certification in Program Management from Defense Acquisition University.
As a trailblazer, Shauger continues to illuminate the path for the younger generation of women entering careers in the ever-changing field of technology.
Her advice to those up-and-comers begins with a well-known adage: the only constant in life is change.
“While future women in technology may focus on how to design and deliver new technology, I would challenge them to also consider how we can insert that technology in the modernization and sustainment of our systems,” Shauger said. “From a warfighter perspective, some of our systems are expected to last 20-30 years – how do we design adaptable systems that can endure?”
Shauger is also the mother of now-adult twins, whom she raised with her husband of 21 years while building a successful career. She lists spending time with the people she loves as her number one favorite thing to do; a brand new nephew is currently awaiting a visit from “Auntie Jen.”
“Work-life balance is a must,” Shauger said. “It’s so important to be there for your family – you can’t get those memories back.”
A self-described Navy brat, Shauger calls Virginia home these days.
In her spare time, she likes to read, bike, travel, watch UVA sports and hit some golf balls – that is, when she’s not busy watching her husband in the kitchen. “He’s the cook in the family,” Shauger said with a wink.
As a part of Naval Information Warfare Systems Command, NIWC Atlantic provides systems engineering and acquisition to deliver information warfare capabilities to the naval, joint and national warfighter through the acquisition, development, integration, production, test, deployment, and sustainment of interoperable command, control, communications, computer, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance, cyber and information technology capabilities.
|Date Posted:||03.08.2021 12:17|
|Location:||NORFOLK, VA, US|
This work, Trailblazers: NIWC Atlantic Logistics Leader Enables Innovation through Collaboration, by Heather Rutherford, identified by DVIDS, must comply with the restrictions shown on https://www.dvidshub.net/about/copyright.
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