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CSM Cyber Lab Ribbon-Cutting and Naming Ceremony Honors Barbara Ives, Retired USNR

February 25, 2024

“It is a great Navy day. It is a great CSM day. It is a great TPP day and it is a great Southern Maryland day!”

Family, friends, retired Navy personnel, community partners and College of Southern Maryland (CSM) faculty, staff, and students, recently gathered for a ribbon-cutting to celebrate the naming of the Barbara Ives Cyber Lab at the college’s Leonardtown Campus. The event recognized the many accomplishments of the long-time southern Maryland resident and retired U.S. Navy Reserve captain who is widely known for her impeccable service to the country, southern Maryland, and academia – including her years working for CSM.

Ives is notably also a member of the United States Naval Academy Class of 1980, the first class to include women in the academy's history.

“Barbara’s service [is] remarkable, and we are deeply honored to name our new cybersecurity labs after her as a way of distinguishing her service and legacy for all future generations,” said CSM President Dr. Yolanda Wilson at the Feb. 13 celebration. “We are so excited to have all of you here as we unveil our new cyber lab and name it in honor of our dear colleague, community leader and friend, Barbara Ives.”

Wilson went on to explain how Ives’ role with The Patuxent Partnership (TPP), and Ives’ relationship with TPP’s Executive Director Bonnie Green, were to credit for launching the new high-tech laboratories now available to CSM students.

“As you will hear from Bonnie … Barbara’s decorated career – and decades of service to our warfighters, their families, students of all ages, in this community – is simply extraordinary, and has certainly left an incredible positive impact on southern Maryland,” Wilson said. “We believe that CSM’s new cyber security immersive labs, which are state-of-the-art investments in our students, and the region’s future workforce – will also make a positive impact on Southern Maryland and our workforce.”

“Barbara and her fellow board members at the Southern Maryland Navy Alliance worked hard for several years to secure the funding for Southern Maryland 2030 Workforce Development initiative and here we are today,” said Green during her remarks. “Southern Maryland 2030 funds were used to support this new cyber lab and it is fitting that the lab be named for Barbara.”

“Today is truly the perfect day to have the CSM cyber lab commissioning ceremony,” Ives offered as she accepted her turn at the podium. “Love comes to my mind, and I can honestly say I feel the special love in this room. I’ve learned that it takes a village with a team working together and trusting one another for a program and project to be successful, and in this case, it’s been a village of perseverance, dedication, passion and especially LOVE.

Ives shared deep gratitude for having the labs named after her.  

“I received a phone call from Bonnie Green in early November,” she began. “After a few moments of catching up on family stuff and of course my grandchildren and Bonnie’s beautiful young granddaughter Victoria, Bonnie shares with me that our CSM Leonardtown [Campus] cyber lab is to be named in my honor should I accept. I cannot begin to express the extent of my surprise and the impact of Bonnie’s words. I can honestly say that except for when [husband] Glen asked me to marry him, and the birth of my boys and grandsons, I have never experienced such overwhelming emotion. Poor Bonnie,” she laughed, “she had to listen to me go on and on …  I told Bonnie, ‘YES. I would be so honored.’”

Of the ceremony and recognition, Ives cheered, “It is a great Navy day. It is a great CSM day. It is a great TPP day and it is a great southern Maryland day!”

2024ivesnaming3312.jpgFollowing remarks, the attendees visited the Barbara Ives Cyber Lab where CSM students offered tours and hand-on demonstrations.

Building a Legacy and STEM Excellence at CSM

“Since 2007, The Patuxent Partnership has been a loyal supporter and advocate of CSM, having committed more than $400,000 in funding for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics scholarships, the CSM Robotics Team – “The Talons,” STEM programming, and cybersecurity initiatives,” Wilson explained during the naming and ribbon-cutting ceremony. “When Bonnie approached [CSM] to share that she found the financial support required to enhance, expand, and upgrade the CSM cyber labs at the Prince Frederick Campus and here at our Leonardtown Campus through the Southern Maryland 2030 Workforce Development initiative – we were beyond grateful – we were humbled”

She further explained that the ongoing partnership with TPP, “enabled us to be here today, changing lives, reducing barriers to education, and increasing career opportunities for CSM students.”

2024ivesnaming3226.jpgGreen added that efforts to build a strong STEM workforce pipeline began when she moved to southern Maryland to lead TPP and when she initially met Ives, and her husband – decorated retired Navy Capt. Glen Ives (pictured right) – just weeks before Glen became the commanding officer at Naval Air Station Patuxent River.

During the dedication, Ives was also praised by Glen. Explaining the couple’s joint decision for Barbara’s move from the Navy to Navy Reserve in order for her to have more hand’s on time with their growing family, Glen said that Barbara never slowed from connecting  her dedication to the Navy, passion for education, and commitment to the community, directly to their family’s daily life.

Green echoed Glen.

“It was perhaps a year or so [after meeting the Ives], under an ‘Individual Augmentee’ program, military personnel working at Pax River began being deployed individually, not as part of a unit,” Green shared. “There was little prior notice and it created difficult and challenging times for the families at back here at home. Barbara took a year off from her career as academic dean at St. Mary’s Ryken [where the Ives’ sons attended] to work with these families. Some were moving to the then new Lincoln Housing, others need help with managing finances, finding childcare, and just getting by. Barbara was there for them.”

Ives explained that in 2015, then CSM President Dr. Brad Gottfried hired her to serve in a new director of strategic partnerships position.

“President Gottfried was truly a visionary leader and recognized the importance of building relationships within the tri-counties and developing a strong relationship with the Navy,” Ives added. “My Navy background, the relationships I built as founder and CEO of the Individual Augmentee Spouse Support Group amongst the defense contractors and local businesses, support for TPP, and understanding of nonprofit organizations, offered the skills and experience CSM was looking for.”

2024ivesnaming3330.jpgShe said to deepen success for CSM, she would visit Naval Air Station Patuxent River at least once a week and eventually was able to introduce Gottfried to Vice Admiral Paul “G8” Grosklags, who led one of the base’s largest tenants - Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR)

“I knew it was going to be a great relationship,” she reflected upon the pair’s meeting.

Ives introduced Gottfried to NAVAIR’s cyber detachment lead, and the dream of an off-base cyber facility at the Leonardtown Campus began. She said she began working closely with TPP on an Office Naval Research (ONR) grant that included the workforce development of a middle school summer cyber program and a CSM and Navy supported electrical engineering pathway program with a focus on cyber.

“The pathway program funded by the Navy was part of the “Grow your own” program where CSM students would attend two years in either mechanical or electrical engineering programs then promote to the University of Maryland off-site campus at the now University System of Maryland at Southern Maryland (USMSM) campus, to complete their final two years, graduate and then seamlessly transfer to NAS Pax and NAVAIR to support the Navy,” Ives shared. “It was, and continues to be, truly an outstanding and successful program in workforce development where the Navy, CSM [students], USMSM, and TPP are all winners.”

Shortly thereafter, The Patuxent Partnership received an $850,000 STEM grant from the ONR to build the STEM workforce pipeline in southern Maryland

“We were off and running as we worked with St. Mary’s College of Maryland, the College of Southern Maryland, the University of Maryland Engineering Program, St. Mary’s County Public Schools, NAWCAD and others,” Green said. “When one of our supporting organizations significantly increased the cost of our quadcopter training program, Barbara found another way forward, working with TPP member, Aviation Systems Engineering Company, on an online training module. It was so successful that educators in other parts of the country use it.”

Green said that it wasn’t long before ONR asked TPP to take on the Maryland Junior Science and Humanities Symposium, (JSHS) and again, Ives answered the call to help – becoming the region’s JSHS manager. Ives is also credited with helping TPP stand up the TechJobsRule apprenticeship program.

Community Success

2024ivesnaming3117-1.jpg“My sincere thanks and appreciation to President Yolanda Wilson hosting this special occasion and her positive leadership and support of this incredibly important southern Maryland workforce development achievement at the CSM Leonardtown Campus,” Ives shared. “My utmost gratitude and sincerest respect for Bonnie Green who is such a strong and devoted community leader for our wonderful Southern Maryland community in workforce development and one of my truest and dearest friends. And lastly, my sincere thanks and appreciation to Vice Admiral Paul Grosklags and Dr. Gottfried for their leadership and vision that began something very special … I love a happy ending.”

To view photos from this event, visit https://csmphoto.zenfolio.com/p16364605.

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