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INCOSE Chesapeake Chapter

Our Mailing Address

International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE)
Chesapeake Chapter
P.O. Box 535
Laurel, MD USA 20725-0535

Members of the 2017 Board of Directors

BOD 2017

President: Mr. Mike Pafford

Mike PaffordMr. Mike Pafford is in his 17th year as a member of the Professional Staff at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (JHU/APL). He is currently supporting a DoD Sponsor by providing Model-Based Systems Architecting and Engineering in a Division of 80 Research Software Developers and Computer Scientists. Mike has over 38 years of team, project, and program level experience in C4ISR Systems Analysis, Requirements Analysis & Engineering, and Systems Architecting, Design, Development, Testing, Deployment, Operations, and Management. While serving as a Linguist and Analyst in the U.S. Air Force, he completed a BS in Business & Management from the University of Maryland University College. While serving as a Cryptologic Officer in the U.S. Navy he was awarded an MS in Computer Systems Management from the Naval Postgraduate School. After retiring from the U.S. Navy Mike worked as Lead Systems Engineer and Project Manager for General Dynamics and Harris Corporation before accepting his current position at JHU/APL. He has been an active member of INCOSE and the Chesapeake Chapter since 1998, and for the past 15 years has been a Co-Chairman of the INCOSE Object-Oriented Systems Engineering Methodology Working Group (OOSEM WG). Since 2008 Mike has been an Instructor (Software Systems Engineering) in the JHU Whiting School of Engineering MS in Systems Engineering curriculum. Mike was the INCOSE Chesapeake Chapter Systems Engineer of the Year for 2011.

President Elect: Dr. Grace Crowder

Dr. Grace Crowder joined the National Security Agency (NSA) as a civilian in January 1998. She joined the Research Directorate and worked on several projects to support the NSA mission.

Dr. Crowder has collaborated with others across the Intelligence Community, industry, and academia on projects that include: text document genre identification, flexible database representations, distributed knowledgebase systems, and an analytics worksheet framework for streaming data analytics. In addition, she has launched several initiatives, partnering with the Computer Science Teacher’s Association, the DOE National Labs, and U.S. Colleges and Universities to further grow the computer science community at NSA and nationwide.

Dr. Crowder holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics from Goucher College, a Master’s degree in Computer Science from the Johns Hopkins University and has defended her dissertation in Computer Science from the University of Maryland Baltimore County to receive her Ph.D. in December of 2016.  Prior to joining NSA, Dr. Crowder spent 10 years in private industry and 6 years on the computer science faculty of Towson State University.

Past President: Mrs. Ellie Gianni, ESEP

EllieMrs. Ellie Gianni is currently employed by the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland where she provides trusted advisory and systems engineering services for the Department of Defense and Intelligence Community. Ellies’ expertise is in the areas of Network Engineering, Systems Engineering and Program Management. She has provided services to the Federal Government for more than 32 years as the President and Owner of Command, Control, Computers and Communications Consulting Services Inc., (C4CSI) and also as an employee of Computer Sciences Corporation, Northrop Grumman, TASC, Lockheed Martin, NASA and Bendix Field Engineering Corporation. She has supported the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the US State Department, and the US Agency for International Development, the American Institute in Taiwan, the Diplomatic Telecommunications Service Program Office, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. She has also worked as an Electronics Engineer for the Goddard Space Flight Center at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Ellie has a Master of Science degree in Computer Systems Management from the University of Maryland and Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh.   Ellie has been a member of INCOSE for 5 years and obtained her INCOSE ESEP Certification in December 2012.

Treasurer: Mr. Tony Gigioli


Mr. Tony Gigioli is a professional Systems Engineer and Project Manager focused on engendering Systems Thinking and encouraging the use of a Systems Approach to all of the problems and situations that arise in life. His objective is to grow in his knowledge and expertise in Systems Engineering philosophy and the application of Systems Engineering to real world issues. He is an expert in process engineering and can help customer’s develop optimal work processes. He has superior technical writing skills and significant experience developing request for proposal responses. He has excellent presentation skills and can explain technical issues in readily understandable terms. Tony spent two years instructing Calculus at the United States Naval Academy and has a wealth of leadership and management experience from his 15 years in the United States Navy and subsequent years in industry. He maintains a positive outlook and an aggressive attitude towards life and work.

Tony is a past President of the Chesapeake Chapter (2008) and has been a member since 1998.

Secretary: Mr. Craig Tyler, ESEP

Craig Tyler

Mr. Craig Tyler is a Systems Engineering Sr. Manager with Vencore. He has 30 years of technical and management experience supporting federal agencies and is certified as an INCOSE ESEP and PMI PMP. Craig earned a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from The Pennsylvania State University and master’s degrees in engineering management from The George Washington University and information systems at Johns Hopkins University. He has a passion for learning and sharing best practices gained in supporting Intelligence Community, DoD, NASA, NOAA, and commercial programs. Craig’s engineering assignments have provided him with a well-rounded exposure to many engineering disciplines and business processes, allowing him to see the “big picture” of systems engineering, decision making, and customer support.

Craig is new to Chesapeake Chapter of INCOSE but previously served three years as Secretary in the Lockheed Martin Leadership Association’s Baltimore-Washington Corridor Chapter, which is part of the National Management Association, as well as the positions of Chapter Vice President and President. During his tenure, the chapter expanded into Baltimore and worked more closely with LM HQ and Northern Virginia chapters.

Directors at Large

Communications: Ms. Myra Parsons Gross, ESEP

Myra Ms. Myra Parsons Gross has more than 30 years of systems engineering experience. She has a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from California State University – Long Beach. Myra is the INCOSE Chesapeake Chapter Women in Systems Engineering (WISE) Past President. Myra began her Systems Engineering career as a Radar Software Design Engineer and Data Analyst for Raytheon (former Hughes Aircraft).  After 5 years, she joined Westinghouse (Northrop Grumman) and advanced her skills in systems engineering working a number of succession radar software development programs for F16 USAF and Foreign Military Sales customers.  Myra served as a Program Manager for a number of large software development programs for F-22 advanced processor, JSF, B-1B upgrade programs and the C-130 modernization program. As a PM she also supported a number of underwater systems including DARPA programs, unmanned vehicles, and sonar systems. She managed programs in excess of $185M over 3 years under multiple Firm Fixed Price Contracts and was responsible for two year strategic plans which resulted in over $450M in sales, and a total potential for over $1B in sales over five years.   Myra retired from Northrop Grumman in 2012 and then returned to the workforce in 2013 as part-time back office support for a small company and later became the Chief Operating Officer. During this time, Myra was introduced to INCOSE and the Women in Systems Engineering (WISE) initiative. She has remained active with WISE since its inception.  Myra pursued her ESEP certification with interest in getting back to the “basics” of pure engineering. She accepted an assignment as a Systems Engineer within the IC as a contractor.  Myra is currently working DoDAF Enterprise Architecture and has worked as a SETA contractor supporting a DoD Customer with managing mission analytics, development and collaboration for the integration effort of multiple organizational tools and services.  She led multiple organizations in the development of agile systems, sprint cycles, integration activities, CONOPs, data flows, mission thread requirements, risk assessments, risk mitigation plans, milestone and schedule tasks, threshold schedules, testing strategies, executive strategic plans and presentations effecting mission decisions of executive government leadership.  For the last three years, Myra has been enjoying her new ‘old’ career and looks forward to continuing her participation with INCOSE and supporting the Chesapeake Chapter where she feels she can best offer her support and continue to mentor young engineering professionals.

Programs: Mr. Gundars Osvalds, ESEP

Gundars Osvalds PhotoMr. Osvalds Gundars is a Certified Systems Engineering Professional (ESEP) and Certified Scrum Master with over 40 years of experience as a SE. He is a Principal Systems Engineer for MetaTech Consulting. He provides systems engineering and technical assistance (SETA) support to DoD programs ranging from Research and Development to large scale transformation utilizing Information Technology with architecture design, architecture framework application, engineering process creation, model based system design (MBSE), agile software and engineering design. He is an author of 8 papers and 13 presentations on systems and architecture engineering.

Membership: Mr. Mark Kaczmarek

Mr. Mark Kaczmarek has over 36 years of professional experience as a Software Systems and Systems Engineer. He has 21 years of experience at Link Flight Simulation building Aerodynamic and Engine Mathematical Models for Aircraft Flight Simulator Trainers. Mark has an undergrad from Parks College of St. Louis University in Aeronautical Engineering. He has a MS degree in Applied Engineering from the Watson School of Engineering at Binghamton State University of New York. Mark has been in several Officer positions from 1986 to 1999 for the Southern Tier Section of the AIAA (American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics) in New York. Currently, Mark is employed by KEYW engineering firm in Hanover, Maryland. Mark has been an active Committee member of the Chesapeake Chapter since May 2010 and has supported the start-up of their Student Division.