What do you do and what is most interesting about your role here at Goddard? How do you help support Goddard’s mission?
I manage a team that provides technical support including audio-visual and video conferencing services to the Center. I help ensure that certain events with technical requirements go smoothly. For example, I coordinate center addresses by our Center Director. Frequently I provide support for off-Center events such as the annual Robert H. Goddard Awards Ceremony. I also organize live, real-time viewing of certain launches.
During events, I am usually in the control room overseeing the technical operations. The Building 8 auditorium control room is an enclosed, windowed room at the rear of the auditorium. We are sort of like the Wizard in “The Wizard of Oz” because we are seldom seen or noticed, but we conjure up magic for the audiences. All the equipment we use helps us create a pleasing spectacle. I have a Bachelor of Arts in film from Dennison University in Granville, Ohio so I always look at my job with an artistic eye.
Teamwork is critical and necessary to achieve our goals. I try to lead by example and offer praise and incentives. I believe in motivation so I try to motivate by stressing the importance of every individual’s role at Goddard. Everyone is important and makes a difference. I don’t want any of my employees to retire or quit ever because we have such a solid team!
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Photo of Todd Stevens in the Building 8 control room. Credit: NASA/W. Hrybyk
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Todd Stevens during one of his triathlons. Image courtesy of: T. Stevens
|I would tell new people that Goddard is a microcosm of the real world, which is constantly changing. Try to be flexible because the world of Goddard is constantly in flux.|
If you weren’t in your current profession, what would you be doing?
I was in student films in college and have done some theater, so I would like to be an actor. Portraying other personas is very appealing to me because you find out more about yourself by playing other people. You can really get lost in some roles.
Is there something surprising about you, your hobbies, interests, or activities outside of work that people do not generally know?
I compete in triathlons, which involve swimming, biking, and running. I run full triathlons about three times a year and in between I also participate in off-road mountain biking and running events. I usually place in the top five for my age group. It is especially fun when I pass the twenty year olds!
If you could meet and talk to anybody, living or dead, who would it be and what’s the first thing you’d ask them?