Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command (NAVFAC) Southeast announced its 2024 Project Manager (PM) and Architect of the Year award selections.
NAVFAC Southeast’s Project Manager of the Year was awarded to William Moreno, senior project manager assigned to the command’s Planning, Design and Construction directorate, and Laura Lake, senior architect also assigned to the Planning, Design and Construction directorate, was selected as the Architect of the Year.
“It is my pleasure to announce the recipients of the 2024 NAVFAC Southeast Project Manager and Architect of the Year awards,” said NAVFAC Southeast Commanding Officer Capt. Miguel Dieguez. “Mr. Moreno and Ms. Lake are both prime examples of high performing professionals committed to our stakeholders and mission accomplishment. These awards recognize their exceptional achievements in infrastructure readiness and resilience in support to the fleet.”
Each year, NAVFAC Southeast meticulously selects a project manager and architect of the Year. These accomplished professionals will subsequently compete in the NAVFAC enterprise-wide competition for Project Manager and Architect, Landscape Architect, and Interior Design of the year.
Originally from Bayamon, Puerto Rico, and now residing in Orange Park, Florida, Moreno served as senior project manager with Planning, Design & Construction directorate at NAVFAC Southeast. He joined NAVFAC Southeast in 2022, holding a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from the Polytechnic University (Puerto Rico), a Master’s in Engineering from the University of Maryland, and is a registered professional electrical engineer (California).
“It is a great honor to be selected as NAVFAC Southeast’s project manager of the year,” said Moreno. “To be selected amongst such a large pool of talented professionals, who gives their absolute best in the workplace every day, is an honor. This was totally unexpected, but yet pleasant surprise.
Moreno’s application of knowledge and skills for AE and construction contract management went well beyond the expectations for his position. He was the “go-to” PM from his peers for application of PM policies and tools, including reviewing / approving requests for promise to pay, escalation memos, reprogramming requests, and requests for military design and construction funds.
After transitioning from NAVFAC Southwest to NAVFAC Southeast, he quickly immersed himself in the challenging task of overseeing some of NAVFAC Southeast’s most prominent and intricate projects for our most discerning clients. This involved adapting to entirely new installations and a customer base distinct from the ones he was accustomed to at Southwest. He took the lead in preparing presentations for senior leadership teams for NAVFAC Southeast’s new Three Tier Governance to project management. Additionally, Moreno showcased the findings of the Consistency Review Board for a significant project in Charleston, South Carolina, receiving applause from senior leadership during presentations to both the Nuclear Power Training Unit and NAVSEA 08.
Moreno states his most challenging aspect of the job is his drive to do the absolute best at everything he does in the workplace; from helping peers, to client / customer service, to supporting the command’s field offices.
Moreno provides this advice to his coworkers, “Always remember that our contributions directly support the mission readiness of the warfighter. The job you do here matters; you make a difference.”
Lake, originally from Port Lyautey (now Kenitra), Morocco, and presently residing in Jacksonville, Florida, is currently a senior architect functioning primarily in the role of design manager for multiple mega military construction projects. She holds a Bachelor’s of Secondary Education from the University of Maryland, and a Master’s in Architecture from University of South Florida.
“It’s a great honor and very humbling experience to be selected as NAVFAC Southeast’s Architect of the Year,” said Lake. “It takes almost an entire career sometimes, to amass enough project success and favorable results to build your candidacy. We have a great team at NAVFAC Southeast and I feel very lucky to represent the Command.”
Lake’s says her most remarkable achievements are an accumulated various performances. As a senior architect with the command’s Planning, Design & Construction directorate, she expertly manages $1.4B in project value (roughly six times the threshold NAVFAC Headquarters (HQ) recommends assigning dedicated design management staffing).
Lake generated eight written Design Manager (DM) training modules, presented training at DM forums, and mentored / guided less experienced architects and design team members. She demonstrated the ability to support three Department of Defense (DoD) service branches (Army, Air Force, and Navy) with architectural leadership and design management. She managed the Air Force’s Weapons Generation Facility project at Barksdale Air Force Base (AFB), Louisiana, which requires nuclear certification, with a very high risk cost / schedule and complex phasing. In the NAVFAC Project Complexity Matrix, this project, which returns nuclear capability to the base, graded 30/30 in complexity. Through an innovative construction award package, she re-orchestrated the project schedule from eight months late, to six months ahead of mission need date.
Lake also serves as the senior architect / design manager for the Navy’s Nuclear Power Training Unit (NPTU) simulator / training facility expansion at Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina. The NPTU project involves wetlands, endangered species, in-water construction, multiple buildings, roadway improvements affecting on-base housing, and risk category (five) buildings in highly seismic areas prone to liquefaction. This project requires close coordination with the Air Force’s 628th Civil Engineering Squadron, on a very high priority Navy project.
Lake provides this advice to her coworkers, “Always find reward in supporting the mission. If you can’t find the thread that ties your job, your project, your actions to the mission, ask someone. If you know that what you do counts, you will want to do it to your best, and that will be a reward on its own.”
NAVFAC Southeast proudly acknowledges Moreno and Lake for their outstanding accomplishments and steadfast commitments to the command and its customers within the southeast region or operation. Their efforts have not only enhanced the Navy’s mission, but have also highlighted the critical importance of exemplary leadership in safeguarding our nation’s security.
NAVFAC Southeast oversees the planning and design of facility projects, offering essential services in contracting, construction, leasing, environmental management, maintenance, and contingency support, all of which are crucial for meeting the needs of the Navy and the Department of Defense within the Southeast Area of Responsibility. Operating from its Jacksonville office, NAVFAC Southeast is responsible for managing operations across Navy installations spanning from Charleston, South Carolina to Corpus Christi, Texas, and extending southward to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. NAVFAC professionals are also engaged in the acquisition and disposition of real estate, facility management, and maintenance on all Navy bases in the Southeast (SE) region, while concurrently supervising public-private venture (PPV) housing for military families.
|JACKSONVILLE, FL, US
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