Grand Prairie, Texas –
My DCMA showcases the Defense Contract Management Agency’s experienced and diverse workforce and highlights what being a part of the national defense team means to them. Today, Kari Twa shares her story.
My name is Kari Twa, and this is “My DCMA.”
I am a systems engineer for DCMA Lockheed Martin Dallas. My job is to oversee Department of Defense contracts awarded to Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control here and report on their status regarding their cost, schedule and technical performance.
I’ve been a DCMA team member for almost three years and a part of DOD for 15 years. I started working for Naval Avionics Center/Naval Air Warfare Center right out of college. I remember during the interview process being intrigued by the opportunity to work on military programs. I gained invaluable hands-on knowledge and experience working at that facility, particularly in systems engineering, design, development, manufacturing and testing.
DCMA has changed since I started working for the Defense Contract Management Command in August 1989 as an aerospace/electronics engineer on the Space Station Freedom Program. This was when DCMA was a command under the Defense Logistics Agency and not a fourth estate agency under DOD. Back then, a lot of work was done manually, whereas now there are more automated processes that make data analysis much easier and comprehensive.
I like working at DCMA because it allows me to serve my country, support our military and be a part of something bigger than myself. We help ensure our taxpayers' money is spent appropriately and accurately, and our warfighters get the necessary and best equipment to support their missions.
One of the great things about working at my location is everyone is amazing and helpful, and our management is very supportive and encouraging of all the work we do. The COVID-19 pandemic forced us to be more apart than together, and I very much look forward to working in person more frequently again.
My favorite hobbies include working out, traveling, making people smile and helping others.
Something unique about me is I served as the Navy category-A senior examiner for the DOD soldering school. I’ve jumped out of an airplane, and I also once worked on the NASA space shuttle hard copier program, which sent and received the first fax to outer space.
My future career goals include learning new skills and ways to best support my team and DCMA. I’m excited about continuing to find new ways to effectively manage our programs and systems and keep our DCMA workforce trained well to keep up with ever-changing technology.