AMARILLO, Texas—Karl Waltzer, acting deputy manager of the National Nuclear Security Administration’s Production Office, has received the NNSA Gold Medal Award in recognition of his distinguished achievements in support of national security programs.
Waltzer was presented the award during a recent visit by NNSA Administrator and retired Lt. Gen. Frank Klotz to the Pantex Plant, located near Amarillo, Texas. Waltzer is retiring after completing 35 years of government service.
The NNSA Production Office, or NPO, oversees operations at the Pantex Plant and the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge.
During the ceremony at Pantex, Waltzer was recognized for his outstanding and dedicated leadership and performance, a press release said.
“Karl has been instrumental in assuring the safe, secure, and successful execution of many notable programs associated with the U.S. nuclear deterrent, including stockpile life extension and dismantlement programs,” Klotz said in the press release.
As acting deputy manager for NPO, Waltzer has been responsible for overall management and executive direction of technical programs, projects, and activities performed by the NPO at Pantex and Y-12. He was instrumental in the creation and startup of the NPO, which began operations in June 2013, and replaced the Pantex and Y-12 Site Offices, the press release said.
Waltzer previously served as the NPO and Pantex Site Office senior scientific and technical adviser. His responsibilities included serving as the primary technical point of contact for the design agencies, the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board, and other advisory organizations regarding the development, integration, and implementation of nuclear safety requirements for operations at Pantex and Y-12, the press release said.
Waltzer began his career at Charleston Naval Shipyard supporting the refueling and overhaul of naval nuclear-powered submarines. In 1991, he joined the U.S. Department of Energy’s Savannah River Operations Office as a systems engineer for H-and F-Canyon operations. He transferred to the Pantex Site Office in 1999 where he worked as a senior nuclear safety analyst. He later served as the Pantex Site Office assistant manager for oversight and assessment and as the assistant manager for nuclear engineering.
Waltzer graduated from West Virginia University in 1979 with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering.