As an author and writer, I’ve enjoyed sharing my experiences through my years of work and now retirement. This is my second published book.
My parents were in their twenties when I was born in June 1934. I’m the second son of their six children. Our parents were hard workers and very loving and caring.
When I was young, airplanes fascinated me. My dad would buy model airplane kits for me to build. Then he would take me to Brookfield Park in Richmond, Virginia to fly the airplane with guide wires.
At the park, I would tell my dad that one day I was going to fly a real airplane. He would smile and say that I was just dreaming. However, my dream came true at age fifteen. I learned to fly real airplanes at that age, and I got my solo-flying license at age sixteen. I became the youngest African American licensed pilot in the State of Virginia.
I graduated from Armstrong High School in June 1952. In September of that year, I attended the University of Illinois in Champagne-Urbana, Illinois. There, I majored in Civil Engineering and completed two years before being drafted into the U.S. Air Force, where I served for four years. While in the U.S. Air Force, I traveled extensively in Europe.
I received an honorable discharge from the Air Force in May 1959 and returned to Richmond for a few months. While in Richmond, I taught ballroom dancing for three months before moving to Brooklyn, New York. In the fall of 1959, I looked for a job in electronics. I was a radar technician in the Air Force and wanted to find something in that line of work. The Brooklyn Navy Shipyard was hiring, and I was hired there. The shipyard closed in 1965 and I was hired at Naval Undersea Warfare Center in New London, Connecticut.
While working for the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, I designed sonar systems to be installed aboard target submarines for at sea testing of sonar systems aboard surface ships or submarines. In that job, I had the opportunity to travel all over the world, and I became Test Director for Target Submarines for sea test over a period of 25 years.
As a co-author, this is my first book. Writing a book that could benefit or help someone else has always been a desire. My dad began working on this book about a year before I was diagnosed. After my diagnosis of prostate cancer, it made sense for to pick up in his writing where he left off to share the generational journey of our survival.
I was born August 1962 in Brooklyn, New York. Raised in Connecticut from age four until I went to college at North Carolina A & T State University in Greensboro, North Carolina on a Navy Cooperative Education scholarship to pursue a degree in Electrical Engineering. While in college, I became a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc – Beta Epsilon Chapter – Spring 1982. (Currently an active Life-member with the Mu Lambda chapter located in Washington, DC) After college, I obtained a masters’ degree in Telecommunications Management from University of Maryland University College.
I’ve worked at a variety of places including the same Naval Undersea Warfare Center in New London, Connecticut, as my dad. My work has always been in technology fields at companies that include Martin Marietta Aero and Naval Systems, Voice of America, MCI, Electric Lightwave, and Siemens Enterprise Communications.
I’m well-versed in enterprise business continuity design strategies, domestically and internationally, for cyber-secure infrastructures, interoperability, cloud computing, and virtual networking. In 2008, I left the corporate world to begin my own business – Continuums Corp – focused on secure business continuity strategies for enterprise architectures and consulting for the Navy DoD. In 2015, I became the Chief Information and Cybersecurity Officer (CIO/CO) for Truth Initiative, a non-profit inspiring tobacco-free lives.
Additionally, I’m a photographer, avid/century cyclist and have been a martial arts practitioner, in over seven different styles, for more than 47-years. I hold a 4th Degree (Master Instructor) Black Belt in Tang Soo Do and Tai Chi. I live in Washington, DC with my loving wife, Diane. My two sons, Jamel and Jared, live in Brooklyn, New York.