One of the benefits of working at the Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division (NSWCDD) is the large number of different areas of interest.
For Deputy Director of War Integration Samuel ‘Sam’ Koski, opportunities at NSWCDD led him through the War Center Division. Enlisted in the Navy after graduating from high school, Koski served aboard the USS Constellation (CV 64) as a wrecker and flight deck mechanic, and completed multiple deployments to the Indian Ocean and the Persian Gulf.
After four years enlisted as an aircraft mechanic for F-14D aircraft, Koski moved to England where he met his wife and earned a bachelor’s degree in aeronautical engineering from the University of Surrey.
A few years later, Koski and his family moved to the Dahlgren area, where he continued his Navy career, this time as a senior test engineer. He then worked on modeling and simulation technologies before moving to the Program Executive Office Integrated Warfare Systems (PEO IWS) on details.
During his nearly two years at PEO IWS, Koski worked on two notable projects: Project Overmatch and the Model-Based Systems Engineer (MBSE) Style Guide. His work on both projects in 2020-21 earned him recognition from the Program Office as a Department of the Navy Meritorious Civilian Service Recipient.
According to the award citation, Koski demonstrated “outstanding leadership, management, and resourcefulness” while managing a team of subject matter experts from PEO IWS, multiple warfare centers, and contractor organizations to deliver the first MBSE style guide in less than four months, acting as a “driving force in the timely drafting, development and promulgation” of the style guide.
“A style guide is a way to define what we mean by creating a systems model in an MBSE tool,” Koski explained. “The challenge was all the different perspectives on what it is – everyone has a different opinion on new things that haven’t been adopted yet. The MBSE style guide impacts everyone in the NAVSEA arena.
Project Overmatch originated in October 2020 with a pair of memos from the Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Michael Gilday, which asserted that the future of US naval supremacy depended “on improving distributed maritime operations through a team manned/unmanned force”. Gilday created the Overmatch project to build naval operational architecture.
“Right after this memo was published, I began reaching out across the organization and building a cross-functional team that worked on PEO IWS to determine how we would contribute in the together,” Koski said. “As a team, working on the style guide and the Overmatch project has stretched our abilities. Our work shows the ability to change and move to a horizontally integrated marine system and type system. I appreciate that fact that people recognize this work.
Last year, Koski returned to the Department of War Analysis and Numerical Modeling as Chief Engineer before taking on the role of Deputy Director of War Integration in January 2022.
“I was an aeronautical mechanic. I know firsthand that we put people at risk, so I’m extremely passionate about making sure we bring things to the Navy that will ensure we’re still in an unfair fight,” Koski said. “My experience depicts my point of view.”