Press Release   Home  >   News & Publications  > News

January 23, 2018

Lab Wins DoD Honors for Support of Guard and Reserve Staff Members

cross-section of a thick sheet of underground ice on Mars

ESGR Maryland vice chair Samuel Peebles (left) with APL award winners Matthew Schaffer, Department Head Mark Llewelyn, and John Ivancovich.
Credit: Johns Hopkins APL/Ed Whitman

Several Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory staff members were presented with Patriot Awards on Dec. 14 by the Maryland Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR). The awards were presented by ESGR Maryland vice chair Samuel Peebles.

The National Security Analysis Department’s Mark Lewellyn (department head), John Ivancovich, Matthew Schaffer, and APL Director Ralph Semmel received Patriotic Employer plaques from the ESGR; all four were nominated by NSAD’s Mathison Hall. The Patriot Award was created by ESGR to publicly recognize individuals who provide outstanding patriotic support and cooperation to their employees.

“While continuing my service as a Marine in the Marine Corps Reserve is privilege and a passion of mine, balancing a dual career requires a tremendous commitment of both time and energy,” said Hall. “The management team here in NSAD and the broader Lab has been completely supportive and even encouraging of my reserve service, which often takes me away from the Lab for weeks at a time, since I joined APL just over two years ago. It is their support and the support of fellow APLers who regularly pick up the slack on projects that allows all reserve and guard APLers to continue to train with our units and deploy downrange without any negative impact on our equally critical work here in Laurel.”

“Since its inception during wartime, the Lab has always been an active and proud supporter of staff members fulfilling military service,” said Semmel. “The encouragement and agility shown at all levels, from supervisors to co-workers, in creating an environment at APL where men and women can be confident about their service, as well as the continuing work of the Lab, is a testament to the Lab’s culture. We’re honored for this recognition, and we thank our friends and co-workers who serve.”

ESGR, a Department of Defense program, seeks to foster a culture in which all employers support and value the employment and military service of members of the National Guard and Reserve in the United States. APL has won numerous awards from ESGR for its support of staff members performing military service.

Media contact: Geoff Brown, 240-228-5618,

The Applied Physics Laboratory, a not-for-profit division of The Johns Hopkins University, meets critical national challenges through the innovative application of science and technology. For more information, visit

APL Celebrates 80 Years of

Game-Changing Impact

Read more

80th anniversary