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ATK Propulsion Systems has pledged $30,000 toward the new Brigham City campus for Utah State University (USU). The donation is another way for ATK to support Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education and demonstrates the company’s role as an active and contributing business partner within the communities where we live and work.

Land for the new USU Brigham City campus has already been committed, and the project commenced with the demolition and removal of the old Kmart building last summer.

The original Brigham City campus has grown from its initial 30 students in 1983 to more than 1,000 students in 2012, and enrollment continues to climb. Currently housed in an older retail facility, the campus has exceeded full capacity, necessitating a new facility.

The Utah State Legislature is expected to approve the $7.5 million request to complete the project during the current legislative session. The USU advisory board has been actively working with the Brigham City Chamber of Commerce and local businesses to raise at least $300,000 from the community. With the $30,000 donation, ATK serves as a leading business donor to the project. USU has generously offered future use of the new facilities to ATK for various business functions as a result of our contribution.

Kathy Philpot, Propulsion Systems Process Engineering director, who serves as an advisory board member to the USU Brigham City campus encourages ATK Aggie alumni and local community members to take advantage of the ATK matching gift program and consider contributing to this worthy, local project.

Dave Sebahar, vice president of Integrated Operations for Propulsion Systems, presented a check to Dr. Tom Lee, Dean of the USU Brigham City Campus, at the monthly Advisory Board meeting in November 2013. During the check presentation, Sebahar stated, “ATK is pleased to participate in this very important project. Serving the communities in which we live and supporting STEM initiatives is a priority for us at ATK.”

ATK’s vision includes having a robust and diverse STEM capability in our communities, where employees are prepared to join the company in achieving the company’s strategy of innovation, execution excellence and market leadership. STEM education is a priority for USU, and the university is prepared to partner with ATK for local school and student involvement. USU has increasingly provided access to education throughout the state of Utah and in rural areas through extension programs, distance and online education, and regional campuses.


Employees at ATK’s Commerce facility in southeast Los Angeles, Calif., recently commemorated 50 years of operations. The Commerce site is known throughout the industry for pressure vessel design and manufacturing capabilities. ATK’s Commerce team provides complete tank design, analysis, engineering, manufacturing and testing, as well as low-gravity and zero-g fluid dynamics analysis, diaphragm molding and diaphragm testing, Propellant Management Device bubble-point testing, solution heat treat, quench and static load testing. The Commerce site operates within Aerospace Group’s Space Components Division under the leadership of David Shanahan, vice president and general manger.


Mark DeYoung, president and chief executive officer of ATK, addressed MBA students, MBA alumni, faculty and professionals on Thursday, Feb. 27 at Weber State University. DeYoung spoke about his education, guiding principles, keys to success and career path as a businessman during his time as a guest speaker for the Weber State MBA Alumni Association Networking Event. The events feature business leaders who are invited to speak at the university each semester, talk about their businesses and interact with the MBA students who attend. The events also help MBA students build connections, network and potentially land internships and full-time jobs.

DeYoung, who holds both an honorary doctorate degree and bachelor’s degree in management from Weber State University, began his speech by congratulating students for taking the time to further their careers through education, and stated that the difference between success and failure is the extra time, effort and attention. He added that preparation is a key factor to success, and his experiences and education from Weber were instrumental in preparing him. “Today’s generation must run just to keep up in an increasingly competitive world. Weber has put you in the starting blocks for this race,” said DeYoung.

“Persistence is the true stuff of success,” advised DeYoung. “Education, talent and genius can’t replace persistence in achieving success. Failure is the path of least persistence. The world is full of educated derelicts,” he said. “Not to mention talent that goes unrewarded. But education is indispensable in today’s world, where technological innovation has eliminated many jobs that involve repetitive tasks. Flourishing in this economic environment requires university graduates to be intellectually resilient, scientifically literate and ethical.”

 DeYoung emphasized that integrity is the foundation of success, and spoke to a culture of responsibility at ATK by insisting upon ethical behavior, environmental stewardship and a focus on safety. He gave examples of how ATK gives back to the communities where it operates through three corporate pillars: a partnership with the United Way, support of military members, wounded warriors and their families through organizations like the USO and ATK’s promotion and investment in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) initiatives in local schools.

 DeYoung closed his speech by recapping final words of advice, “On the road of life, take only occasional glances in the rearview mirror. Spend a majority of your time looking through the windshield; be focused on what’s ahead. Strike a balance in your life, and try to give back. Ensure you experience a variety of dimensions. Don’t get caught up in one thing that you lose sight of the bigger picture. Focus on persistence. You will excel. You will succeed.”

In September, Jason Aldean, country singer and current member of the Buck Commanders, attended a long range shooting day hosted by Sporting Group brands Federal Premium, Weaver Scopes and Tactical Rings and newly acquired Savage Rifles. Jason made a stop during a recent concert tour to Ridgefield, Washington to visit the home of Team Savage, World and National Champions at Douglas Ridge Rifle Club in Estacada, Oregon. The day’s shooting events were filmed for a future episode of Buck Commander.

Savage Arms, recently acquired by ATK, donated $25,000 to the fundraising campaign for Fleming College’s Kawartha Trades and Technology Centre in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada. “We believe supporting the Kawartha Trades and Technology Centre will help with the Peterborough area’s demand for highly-skilled workers, which in turn, will strengthen our local economy and help improve everyone’s quality of life,” says Terry McCullough, vice president and general manager of Savage Arms. For more information click here.

The day of the event, 60 walkers were greeted with perfect weather conditions in Bozeman, Montana. A little over $2,300 was raised locally and several people stopped to learn about Chiari from the walkers.

Last year, the event was held at 53 different locations, involved more than 8,500 participants and raised over $530,000. This year, the walk has grown to 61 sites and several “Walk Anywhere” sites. The “Walk Anywhere” sites are for those who cannot reach a local site. One “Walk Anywhere” site was at the U.S. Embassy in Iraq with over 50 walkers!

Chiari affects over 300,000 people in the U.S. It affects both the young and old, and can cause unbearable headaches, nerve damage, paralysis, and many other symptoms. In rare cases it can be fatal. Chiari is not well known and there are a lot of unanswered questions about it.

Funds go to the Conquer Chiari Research Center at the University of Akron. To date, they have funded over $1.4 million in research. Further information is available at Next year’s walk will be held across the country on September 20, 2014.

After the event, Ian remarked, “I am honored to work with such a great group of people at BLACKHAWK! who not only make great products but treat their employees great. BLACKHAWK! has supported my family the last year and half through the loss of our son and through their support of the Chiari Walk. I am glad that I made the decision three and a half years ago to join the BLACKHAWK! family.”

(L to R) Kirk Featherstone, Sean Peiffer, Donna Romano, Laura Maher, and Adam Mitchell of ATK Ronkonkoma organize food items for donation to Long Island Cares.

Thanks to the generosity of Missile Products employees in Ronkonkoma, New York, ATK donated more than 230 pounds of nonperishable food and other items to Long Island Cares, Inc. – Harry Chapin Food Bank. Founded in 1980 by the late singer/activist Harry Chapin in response to the growing issue of hunger on Long Island, the community-based organization works with other charitable agencies to fight hunger in Nassau and Suffolk Counties, New York. Each year, Long Island Cares distributes more than six million pounds of food to over 580 food locations.

Karen Davies, ATK Defense Group Vice President of Business Operations and Technology speaks to Radford University Summer Bridge Program participants about her experiences working in a STEM field. New River Energetics provided scholarships for five girls to participate in the program.

ATK Missile Products division New River Energetics (NRE) in Radford, Virginia, provided scholarships for five young women to attend Radford University’s Summer Bridge 2013 program.Summer Bridge is a week-long residential experience in the College of Science and Technology for high school girls interested in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).

The program offers classroom lessons, laboratory experiments, and field trips designed to encourage the girls’ consideration of a career in a STEM field.  Participants choose from learning tracks in Space Exploration, Environmental Science, Forensic Science, or Biology and Chemistry.

Summer Bridge program leadership invited ATK’s Karen Davies, Defense Group Vice President of Business Operations and Technology, to speak to the girls about her experiences working in a STEM field.

Karen encouraged the girls to set high expectations for themselves and to believe in their ability to achieve those expectations.

ATK employees Hillary Searle, David Brown, Victoria Chadwick and Jennifer Bowman, joined by ATK retirees Patti Holbrook, Toni Payne and Randy Cribs and family and friends, supported the United Way of Salt Lake’s annual Day of Caring kickoff. ATK has participated in UWSL’s Day of Caring activities since they were first held, 21 years ago.

Several Utah ATK employees and family members attended the United Way of Salt Lake Day of Caring Kickoff Breakfast at the Gateway in Salt Lake City. This year’s ATK Day of Caring projects include a carnival at The Children’s Center in Kearns, activities at the Pioneer Adult Rehabilitation Center in Clearfield, renovations at the new Boys and Girls Club facility in Tremonton, maintenance at the Whittier Center in Logan and several outdoor projects at Magna Elementary School in Magna. Day of Caring service projects are a great way to complement our corporate wide United Way campaign. Live United!

On July 17th the National Shooting Sports Foundation launched Hunting Works for Utah.  ATK Sporting Group has been an active supporter of the Hunting Works Campaign as it has been launched in Minnesota, North Dakota, Iowa, Missouri, Arizona, Pennsylvania and Utah.  The campaign is aimed at building a coalition of businesses and organizations that are connected to hunting and the shooting sports, and shedding light on the significant and positive impact hunting and recreational shooting have on the economy.  Tourism, hotels, gas stations and retailers all benefit from these past-times. By working together with the firearms and ammunition industry they can be potent advocates for policies that benefit conservation and jobs. Learn more about Hunting Works for Utah.