By LTG Mitch Stephenson
U.S. Army (Retired)

In March of this year, I gave a short presentation about Leidos to the Mineral County Board of Commissioners, because I wanted the County leadership to know who we are, and why we are bidding on the Hawthorne Army Depot contract. I wanted to follow up and tell you a little more about our company.

Fifty years ago, Dr. J. Robert Beyster left a lucrative job at General Atomics and founded a start-up with the vision of using science to provide solutions to help address some of the world’s most pressing issues. Today, that company is known as Leidos, derived from the word kaleidoscope. Leidos is a global Fortune 500® company with more than 33,000 employees who are committed to making the world safer, healthier, and more efficient.

Leidos’ vision – our kaleidoscope of innovation if you will – has kept us on the cutting edge for 50 years in some of the most advanced areas of science and technology.

  • When the National Science Foundation (NSF) looked for ongoing infrastructure support for the U.S. Antarctic Program, our team stepped up to operate the world’s longest supply chain to Antarctica and ensure that NSF research grantees could conduct valuable scientific research on the continent.
  • As a full-service provider of airborne intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) solutions, Leidos conducts full life cycle support – providing a ‘tip-to-tail’ solution for government agencies. Our advanced solutions set covers the procurement, modification, and maintenance of aircraft, and the provisioning of expert pilot talent in the field.
  • When the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention needed to maintain a government repository of medications and medical supplies for response to disasters and other emergencies, they turned to Leidos.
  • As one of the world’s most significant environmental cleanup projects continues at the Department of Energy’s Hanford site, our team has been there to create infrastructure efficiencies that accelerate the cleanup.

The Hanford site provides the primary source of industry for the neighboring Tri-Cities area of Washington, much like the Hawthorne Army Depot provides a central economic base for Mineral County. When awarded the Hanford site integration contract, Leidos put tools and processes in place to ensure alignment with Small, Disadvantaged, Small Women-Owned, HUBZone, Service-Disabled, and Veteran Owned business goals. To date, Leidos has subcontracted more than $918 million to small businesses in the Tri-Cities.

Extending Innovation

As a leader in operations and logistics programs for defense, civil, and health customers, Leidos looks to extend the reach of its innovations on programs that align with our mission, with a commitment to doing the right thing for our people, our community, and our customers. Doing the right thing can be challenging to quantify, but one way we do this is through the annual Ethishphere™ World’s Most Ethical Companies list. Ethisphere recognizes companies that meet rigorous criteria covering the quality of their ethics and compliance program, organizational culture, corporate citizenship and responsibility, governance, and leadership, and reputation. At Leidos, we are proud to be named as one of the world’s most ethical companies for the third year in a row.

Empowering Employees

Leidos believes that inspired, passionate, and united employees not only further our mission to provide innovative solutions, but they are also active in their communities, are ethically-minded, and make a positive difference in the world. Once a candidate is hired, Leidos is committed to his or her success. One of the many ways Leidos ensures that employees can continue their professional development is by offering a job rotation program designed to allow early to mid-career professionals an opportunity to move between the lines of business. Participants in the program progress through assignments while working on personal and professional development areas through an individualized development plan.

In addition, a culture of employee support is evident throughout Leidos, notably in its Employee Resource Groups (ERGs). ERGs provide opportunities for employees to collaborate on shared interests and foster an inclusive environment of acceptance and respect. ERGs also promote professional development through networking and mentoring opportunities.

And lastly, to grow a diverse and talented workforce, Leidos has a robust, year-round referral program for positions throughout the company. The program offers cash and other incentives for employees who refer a candidate for a position who is later hired.

Supporting Community

Leidos also provides financial support and encourages employees to volunteer in causes that develop their communities. Some of Leidos’ recent community support includes: a donation to the Boys and Girls Club of Mason Valley to support academic and recreational programming; financial and employee support of FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) teams to inspire K-12 student’s interest and participation in science and technology; financial support and employee participation in the American Heart Association’s Heart Walk and the American Diabetes Association’s Tour de Cure. And most recently, Leidos was recently recognized by the Army Historical Foundation for a financial contribution and overall support of the future National Museum of the United States Army. Leidos’ sponsorship commemorates our dedication to ensuring the story of the American soldier is honored and told.

Going Beyond

In 2017, John Hindman, an employee in Leidos’ Civil Group, sent an email to Leidos Chairman and CEO, Roger Krone, with the subject line, “a father’s request.” In his email, John described the loss of his son to substance misuse. And knowing other families struggled with the same, he felt compelled to reach out to someone who he thought could take action, particularly owing to the company’s important work in its communities and the healthcare field.

Mr. Krone took this email to heart, and after looking into the opioid epidemic in more detail, responded to John’s email with this message: “We’re all in.” This commitment resulted in Leidos launching a robust internal and external campaign to help address the nation-wide opioid epidemic.

Looking Forward

Leidos continues to build on our founder Dr. Beyster’s original vision to develop scientific solutions that impact the country and our world. We strive to make an impact by empowering our teams, contributing to our communities, operating sustainably, and doing business according to our mission, vision, and values.