Sandia News

Executive Support Group

defense-in-depth approach graphic
Sandia’s Defense In-Depth Approach graphic.

A layered defense to COVID-19

As the COVID-19 pandemic escalated in early 2020, Sandia’s leadership responded quickly and proactively, not only to protect the workforce but also to maintain continuity of operations and mission delivery. A pandemic planning team was assembled to oversee the Labs’ response, field questions and coordinate interfaces with external stakeholders. ES&H enhanced on-site safety and protocols and issued new policies and guidance for pandemic-related best practices and telecommuting. Sandia also implemented a layered, defense-in-depth approach to health surveillance, including screenings, testing, contact tracing, disinfection and supplying PPE. (ESG)

Virtual programs succeed during pandemic

Faced with the challenge of continuing leadership development while unable to gather in groups larger than ten, Sandia developed and provided original virtual leadership programs for Fall Leadership Forum and the National Security Leadership Development Program. Using Microsoft Teams, programming included speakers from around the country, virtual break-out rooms for discussion, and virtual “paired walks.” Participants reported they valued the connection with their colleagues in the remote COVID-19 environment and learned to be more creative within pandemic constraints. (1, 3000, 10000)

ES&H 5-Year Strategy implemented

Environment, Safety and Health implemented its ES&H 5-Year Strategy to renew focus in leadership engagement, injury reduction, environmental stewardship and hazard identification and control. The strategy also led to the formation of an ES&H Governance Board to drive cohesive Labswide goals and initiatives, the reimagination of manager training, and the launch of an IT consolidation project that streamlines more than 50 tools and processes. With the integration of ES&H and Emergency Management, Sandia is strengthening its culture of safety, sustainability and preparedness. (ESG)

Internal Audit and Ethics/EEO Investigations

Internal Audit and Ethics/EEO Investigations completed 26 audits and 76 investigations to mitigate risks. The audits evaluated internal controls, compliance and best practices in Environment, Safety and Health, information technology, and financial processes. Contract Audit completed $325,800,000 in 148 subcontract audits. All audits identified best practices and deficiencies to quantify process weaknesses, thus supporting continuous improvement. The Ethics and EEO programs teamed to introduce a new Personal Conflict of Interest disclosure tool and database, and rewrote procedures to assure consistency in all investigations. (800)

Executive Protocol hosts 112 events

Members of Executive Protocol are trusted advisers and subject matter experts on the accepted practice of diplomatic and business etiquette. Executive Protocol supported 112 events with successful outcomes, including but not limited to hosting Ambassadors Wilcott and Billingslea, assistant secretaries, U.S. general officers, British Gen. Hyde, and numerous congressional visits, six of which were virtual. During the time of COVID-19, Executive Protocol has added risk mitigation and developed job aid tools for novice event coordinators, and created a robust event registration site accessible by external non-Sandia attendees. (ESG)

shipping preparation
Packaging the RH-TRU waste took extreme coordination and teamwork within Sandia and support from WIPP and LANL.

Transuranic waste shipment to WIPP

Sandia worked with the Waste Isolation Pilot Project to complete transuranic material-at-risk waste shipments in July 2020 — the first shipments since 2012. The waste was remote-handled transuranic waste generated by reactor fuel testing in the 1980s and early 1990s. The waste was packaged in shielded container assemblies. Sandia shipped 11 of 25 RH-TRU waste containers in July; the remaining 14 require an additional special container because the radiation dose is higher. (1000)