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Vertex announces T-45 transition plan

By Staff
special to The Star
August 9, 2003
MADISON Vertex Aerospace officials on Friday announced details of their transition plan for T-45 support at Naval Air Station Meridian. Vertex will employ about 300 people in the program at Meridian.
The base awarded Madison-based Vertex an $85.7 million contract $450 million including options on July 29. The program also involves T-45 support at NAS Kingsville, Texas.
Vertex will be responsible for Contractor Logistics Support and other services for the T-45 Training System. Support for the Ground Based Training System will be subcontracted to AAI.
The team
Rick Marcantonio, a retired U.S. Navy captain, will be the T-45 program manager for Vertex, serving both Meridian and Kingsville. He served as a commanding officer at NAS Corpus Christi and was an executive assistant for the Chief of Naval Air Training.
Reporting to Marcantonio will be T-45 Meridian site manager T.L. Hightower, a retired U.S. Navy captain and former NAS Meridian base commander. A highly decorated attack aviator, Hightower has exceptional knowledge of the T-45 training system. The Hightower family owns a home in DeKalb.
Finally, Harold Lambert will be transition manager at Meridian until the process is complete.
Lambert has more than 20 years with Vertex Aerospace, mostly with the company's U.S. Navy programs business area. He is currently program manager for the Vertex/Navy T-34/44 program for primary pilot training. Lambert also served as transition manager for Vertex in the TH-57 helicopter pilot training program.
What's next
Ward said Vertex officials plan to open a transition office on the base by Aug. 15.
Worldwide, the 6,300 employees of Vertex oversee and manage more than 2,000 aircraft and other equipment at 323 locations, providing contract maintenance and training support for military, federal government and commercial customers.

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