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Lou Von Thaer, President and CEO of Battelle, Named to 2020 Wash100 for His Dedication to Company Growth Through Major Contract Awards, Partnerships, Executive Appointments

Jeff Brody
Lou Von Thaer

Executive Mosaic is honored to present Lou Von Thaer, president and CEO of Battelle, as an inductee into the 2020 Wash100 Award for expanding the company’s revenue and influence in the sector through valuable contract awards, partnerships and important executive appointments.

This marks Von Thaer’s fifth Wash100 Award. He won his 2019 Wash100 Award for his leadership and efforts advancing biosecurity and other technology for Battelle.

Von Thaer joined Battelle in October 2017 to succeed former president and CEO Jeff Wadsworth following his retirement. Von Thaer “is an innovative problem solver who brings nearly 35 years of engineering and management experience in technology development and deployment to solve complex national security and societal issues,” said Wadsworth.

Currently, Von Thaer leads the world’s largest independent nonprofit research and development organization that encompasses more than 30,000 personnel. The organization also manages eight national laboratories focused on national security, health, life science and environmental subject areas. Through Von Thaer’s leadership, the company has continued to expand throughout the year.

Most notably, Von Thaer drove sale of its counter-unmanned aerial system technology to San Francisco-based firm Dedrone in October 2019. Battelle’s system uses sensors to collect data from wifi, non-wifi and radio frequency-based sUAS before transmitting information to command-and-control systems. Its point-and-shoot mechanism has a potential range of 0.24 miles. The sale has added to Battelle’s revenue and expanded its industry relationships.

Battelle also secured a $50 million task order to provide program support and technical assistance for tactical vehicles and ground equipment for the U.S. Marine Corps. Von Thaer will continue to help  supply technical advice and programmatic support efforts as part of the Corrosion Prevention and Control program.

In addition, the team will manage subcontractor teams that are assigned to conduct repairs and evaluation services at Marine Corps facilities worldwide. According to Battelle, the firm developed systems and assessed repair procedures and corrosion prevention materials to validate future investments and reinforce preservation of equipment.

Von Thaer spearheaded the energy alliance with the Department of Energy to establish a radiation test facility called the Versatile Test Reactor (VTR). The company will continue to provide development and deployment support to the Versatile Test Reactor that will facilitate radiation tests for current and future designs. VTR is slated for construction in 2022 and operational capacity in 2026.

In addition to significant growth efforts, Battelle also broadened its leadership to include key figures in the government contracting arena. Most recently, Battelle added Stephen Steinour, president and CEO of Huntington Bancshares, to its board of directors. He will help execute the company’s business and philanthropic missions.

The organization also appointed Justin Sanchez, director of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s biological technologies office, as a technical fellow. With the addition, Von Thaer helped expand scientific advancement across Battelle’s broad portfolio of life science offerings in medical devices, pharmaceutical research, biosecurity and public health.

Executive Mosaic isn’t the only organization to have recognized Von Thaer’s achievements across a variety of sectors. While the Wash100 Award is the most coveted and prestigious award that the GovCon industry has to offer, Von Thaer’s achievements have led Battelle to receive other notable awards within the industry.

Battelle recognized members of its leadership team during the Annual Celebration of Solvers Event in April 2019. Ron Townsend, executive vice president of laboratory operations at Battelle, secured the CEO Award for his management of national laboratories under the sponsorship of DoE and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

Aside from serving as the organization’s headquarters, Battelle’s facility in Columbus, Ohio also allows the GovCon sector to know more about government efforts. In August, Battelle showcased ecological research aircraft under the National Science Foundation’s National Ecological Observatory Network program. The program, managed by Battelle, includes aerial platforms designed to collect data across 81 sites.

“Although we have 81 different sites across the U.S., none of them are in Columbus, so we thought we’d bring one of our mobile platforms to our own backyard so people can learn more about this important work,” said Von Thaer.

Executive Mosaic commends Battelle and Lou Von Thaer for his 2020 Wash100 Award. Von Thaer’s vision, leadership and drive to generate exponential growth and expand the company’s presence in the GovCon sector has cemented him as an executive who could be a significant influence in 2020.

About The Wash100

This year represents our sixth annual Wash100 award selection. The Wash100 is the premier group of private and public sector leaders selected by Executive Mosaic’s organizational and editorial leadership as the most influential leaders in the GovCon sector. These leaders demonstrate skills in leadership, innovation, achievement, and vision.

Visit the Wash100 website, where viewers can submit 10 votes for the executives of consequence they believe will have the most significant impact in 2019.

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