BALTIMORE, Md. – Lt. Cmdr. Stephen Cortez, assigned to the Center for Information Warfare Training (CIWT), was honored as one of the 2022 Copernicus Award winners for his contributions supporting information warfare during the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association’s TechNet Cyber conference at the Baltimore Convention Center on Apr. 26.
The Copernicus Award, named for the Copernicus Architecture used as a basis for the Navy’s modern Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence (C4I) Systems, was created in 1997 and is presented by the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association and the U.S. Naval Institute to selected Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard service members and civilians who have demonstrated sustained superior performance in C4I or information technology (IT) related positions.
Retired U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Susan Lawrence, president of AFCEA, attended the awards ceremony and retired U.S. Army Brig. Gen. Paul Fredenburgh III, executive vice president for Defense for AFCEA, served as the guest speaker to recognize the Copernicus Award recipients.
Cortez was nominated for his contribution to the Navy while attached to Carrier Strike Group 5 (CSG5). During that time he served as the cryptologic resource coordinator (CRC) for the carrier strike group, while also supporting the development of doctrine, tactics, techniques, and procedures for future CRC Sailors.
CRC is the position assigned an officer responsible for managing cryptologic assets, cryptologic coverage and tasking plans, personnel and augmentation requirements, cryptologic direct support operations, signal security operations, direct service interfaces, cryptologic sanitation, and correlation procedures.
Cortez said receiving notification that he was selected for the Copernicus Award was a surprise.
“I didn’t even know I had been nominated for the award, so it’s super humbling to have been selected,” said Cortez. “I felt pride in the accomplishment, felt pride to have been a part of CSG5; and most of all thankful for my Sailors, and proud of everything we accomplished as a team. My accomplishments would not have been possible without great mentorship from my leadership, outstanding support and teamwork from my peers, and amazing Sailors who inspired me every day to be better.”
Cortez said, now serving as a CRC instructor at Information Warfare Training Command Corry Station his number one goal is to provide the best instruction, guidance, and mentorship he can to the future CRCs and Assistant CRCs. He looks forward to passing on the things he learned during the two years he served as the CRC of CSG5 supporting Forward Deployed Naval Forces operations, “the good and the bad.”
Center for Information Warfare Training delivers trained information warfare professionals to the Navy and joint services, enabling optimal performance of information warfare across the full spectrum of military operations.
Contact Info: Center for Information Warfare Training Public Affairs – CIWT_PAO@us.navy.mil