Our employee spotlight shines a light on one employee at a time. We value diversity and inclusion and welcome diverse thinking. It takes a village — through collaboration, living safely and driving innovation we realize our goals and help our clients achieve mission success. Our mantra is people first, mission always. As part of the National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, we’ll feature employees who focus on cybersecurity at Amentum. Today’s Q&A is with Richard Johanning, VP of Mission Engineering in our Advanced Technology Office.
How did you come to join Amentum?
I was hired to work for URS by Ron “Fog” Hahn in 2013, transitioned to AECOM and now an Amentum “Plank Owner.”
What is your professional and personal background?
I have been involved with reducing risk to individuals, corporations, and the United States through physical, logical, and personal security practices since 1991. I started as a volunteer Firefighter/EMT in Fairfax County, VA to cybersecurity and Electronic Warfare SME at the Joint Electronic Warfare Center. I then became a principal staff advisor on Operations Security and Military Deception to the Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence.
How did your military service prepare you for a successful career at Amentum?
My time in the military prepared me to be a successful leader, how to plan for all contingencies, and most importantly – how to be a team player.
Describe the work you do and how you think it makes a positive impact.
I serve as a trusted advisor to create and maintain effective customer relationships with our clients and business development teams and also do the following:
- Facilitate knowledge sharing; development of solution options, white papers, templates, and training materials to ensure other Amentum staff can re-use developed knowledge.
- Strategically guide clients and Amentum business development teams regarding technology, IT infrastructure, cybersecurity, and wireless security.
- Build and lead solution designs for major federal projects such as future solutions for existing contract work.
- Synchronize between the business and IT stakeholders to formulate secure solution architecture approaches that reduces risks.
What are some of your accomplishments and/or what has been your proudest career moment?
I am proud of all of my accomplishments, but most importantly, I am proud that I have the trust of my supervisors and the skills needed to help in a time of need. I have always been that person asked to support major challenges facing URS/AECOM/Amentum. Some examples of those challenges include:
- Navy CTTR to obtain an Authority To Operate certificate for a range network within 3 months (accomplished)
- Support the capping of a major methane leak on the west coast (accomplished)
What do you enjoy about working for Amentum?
The people! We are a family here. I have worked with a majority of my current team for over 15 years in one capacity or another. I say family because we are there for each other at any given moment.
What are you passionate about?
Safety and security!
What’s your career advice?
Find something you care about, and care deeply. That and the Golden Rule: treat others as you like to be treated.
What does safety mean to you, or do you have a favorite safety tip?
As a self-proclaimed risk evangelist: It means taking the time to recognize the things that will prevent you from achieving your goals and taking the appropriate steps to reduce those risks to protect yourself, colleagues, family, and friends.
What’s the best invention in the world and why?
e-readers… I love to read, and e-readers make it easy for me to change subjects without having to carry so many different books with me at a given time.
Anything else you would like to share from a personal or professional perspective?
I have been married to my best friend for 16 years, but we have known each other for 25 years. My oldest son is at Texas A&M studying psychology and sociology. My youngest son is a freshman at Harlan High School in San Antonio.