Who in the world of CHA Is Paul Mikovits?

We are happy to continue our “Who in the World” blog series this year. We learned so much about our stellar employees last year and can’t wait to share some more outstanding CHA rock stars with you this year! And we can’t imagine a better person to start off 2019 than Paul Mikovits.

Paul has been with CHA since March 2011 and currently serves as a Senior Human Systems Integration (HSI) Analyst. Paul is involved in many of the manpower, training, and personnel projects here at CHA that directly support the U.S. Navy when it comes to new equipment, systems, and ship classes. As with many of our employees, Paul cites the people who work here as one of his favorite things about CHA (we’re in full agreement!), but he also loves all the opportunities he’s had over the nearly eight years he’s been here, working projects with just about every department we have.

Paul’s hardworking, detail-oriented approach is just one of the things we love about him. His personal motto, “One Team One Fight,” is something he brings to every level of both his personal and professional lives. He says, “I try to put people and relationships before personal reward, financial or otherwise.” He loves being part of a cohesive team working toward a common goal. In other words, Paul is the consummate team player. His ability to put himself into a team mentality and to focus on the best outcome for the group or project is one of his greatest strengths and one of the many reasons we hope he continues to call CHA his work home.

Paul definitely understands “service before self,” as he spent 26½ years serving our country in the U.S. Navy. Paul worked both as an Ocean Systems Technician Maintainer (OTM) and as a Sonar Technician Surface (STG), retiring as an E8 (Senior Chief Petty Officer). He was stationed in Dam Neck, Virginia, Norfolk, Virginia, and Ford Island, Hawaii. He brings an incredible amount of experience and knowledge to his work at CHA.

Paul is a devout family man. His faith and his family are the two most important things in his life. His wife, Leslie, works as an office manager for the Chesapeake Humane Society. As Paul says, “She basically gets to cuddle kittens and puppies all day.” His two sons are a source of pride as well. His older son, Jon, is a straight A student at Southern Virginia University and is married to Maddy. His younger son, Daniel, is an old soul who is continuing his family’s military service. He has enlisted in the Navy as an Aviation Support Equipment Technician.

In his free time, Paul loves to attend Old Dominion University football games, leads a men’s Bible study group, and watches classic movies with his family. He enjoys anything physical like biking, jogging, and hiking, and NFL season has him rooting passionately for “America’s Team,” the Dallas Cowboys.

Paul sees a bright future for CHA. He believes that in five years we will still be the leading veteran-owned Manpower Analysis, Personnel Analysis, Training (MPT), and Curriculum Development defense contractor in Virginia, and he hopes to be a part of that. We have to say, Paul, we hope you are, too.

We always like to include one fun, previously unknown fact about our spotlight employee. Remember we said Paul had once been stationed in Hawaii? Well, it just so happens he was an avid surfer while he was there, and even called the famous North Shore home. The next time you’re at CHA, stop in and ask Paul for some of his stories. We promise it’s worth the time. Or get him to debate whether the Dallas Cowboys truly are “America’s Team.” All in good fun, of course!

2019-01-14T12:40:48+00:00January 14th, 2019|

2018 year in review – and what a year it’s been!

Did 2018 seem to fly by for you like it did for us here at CHA? We were amazed when we realized it was already time to reflect on this year and look forward to 2019. Still, it was fun to take a stroll through CHA’s 2018 and look back on all that happened.

CHA was awarded some impressive contracts this year. With the first contract win, we partnered with FoxGuard Solutions, Inc. in support of a $4.2 million task order related to the Carrier-Advanced Reconfigurable Training System (C-ARTS). FoxGuard brought their considerable expertise to developing high-end computer systems for C-ARTS, which we’ll discuss more in depth later.

Then we were awarded an FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) contract under which we will support the FAA by providing services to several functional areas, including Computer/Information Systems Development, Documentation and Training, and Engineering Services. CHA has worked hard over the last couple of years to expand our offerings and this contract win highlights just one of the ways we’ve worked to broaden our horizons.

CHA also was recently awarded a contract in service of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA). Under this one-and-a-half year, $2 million contract, CHA will design products using the latest available technologies in machine learning and convolutional neural networks to process large DIA datasets and provide faster methods of analyzing captured media. A mouthful maybe, but we’re honored to be working with our nation’s intelligence service in such a capacity.

Additionally, CHA was the proud recipient of a couple of awards this year. We were named one of Virginia’s Fantastic 50 for a second year in a row. This list highlights the 50 fastest growing businesses in the Commonwealth. We’re proud to be recognized for a second year and will continue to work hard to grow and expand in the future. In September, CHA was also recognized with the MS&T Industry Awards’ Outstanding Innovative Product Award for our Lighthouse High Velocity Learning Environment (HVLE) product. In addition to being featured in the September issue of MS&T, CHA was honored for its achievement in November at the Interservice/Industry Training, Simulation and Education Conference (I/ITSEC) in Orlando, Fla.

However, our biggest and most exciting news of 2018 was the completion and launch of the Carrier-Advanced Reconfigurable Training System. C-ARTS impressed all who had a chance to see it this year. Even the Vice Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Bill Moran, made a trip to check out this impressive new training system. By the end of 2018, C-ARTS had started offering its first classes to CVN 78 crews and is well on the way to providing top-notch, state-of-the-art training to our entire Navy. We couldn’t be prouder of how C-ARTS turned out and can’t wait to do even more impressive work in the future. C-ARTS will make its way to its permanent home at Naval Station Norfolk next year.

As you can see, CHA had quite a year! But we don’t rest on our laurels here. We’re already hard at work on exciting new offerings for 2019. Keep checking back in for periodic updates and the chance to meet more of our impressive employees. CHA is only as strong as the talent and dedication of our people. Judging on what they’ve done so far, we can’t wait to see what they come up with next.

2018-12-31T23:43:35+00:00December 31st, 2018|

C-ARTS classes under way

“C-ARTS is definitely a great way for Sailors to learn; it’s convenient that it’s located close to the ship and it helps better us for the ship,” said Electrician’s Mate (Nuclear) 2nd Class Logan Baron, after attending a 6-day training class earlier this month. 

Read more here:


The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.

2018-12-31T23:39:49+00:00December 31st, 2018|

Who in the world of CHA is Aron Wilms?

As we begin the holiday season, it’s fitting to celebrate another of our Cape Henry Associates rock stars, Aron Wilms. Aron has been with CHA for just 15 months, but in his role as Human Systems Integration Analyst he has already made a positive contribution to the stellar support we offer our military clients. His expertise gained while managing and developing naval courses transitioned seamlessly into his current work laying down the foundation of new courses. We are lucky to have him and his passion for serving our military!

Aron is one of the most honest, hardworking, and passionate people you could ever hope to work alongside. His passion, especially, for our clients is inspirational. He’s so determined to provide the best possible products to our clients that he says he can be too “over-calculating” at times. Whatever he means by that, the truth is he always delivers a well-thought-out, precise product and thrives on the daily challenges we throw at him here at CHA.

In fact, Aron will tell you one of his favorite things about CHA is the challenging assignments. That, and the ability to continue to work and interact closely with Navy program offices, in-service engineers, and shipboard personnel, as this allows him to remain close to a service to which he dedicated 26 years of his life. Add in CHA’s commitment to balancing professional and personal priorities, and Aron believes CHA may just be the perfect way to continue to serve and find meaningful, worthwhile employment.

We’d expect nothing less from a man who over the years has served as a Chief Electronics Technician and a Master Training Specialist, and worked with the White House Communications Agency. In addition to his outstanding naval service, Aron’s joy and purpose lie with his wife, Janet, a pharmacist, and their three very accomplished children. Their son, Sean, is a senior at Jacksonville University majoring in marine biology and is currently in Australia studying for a semester. Their daughter Shannon is a freshman at Longwood University majoring in psychology with a minor in art. She plans to foster the new study of neurology diversity. Their youngest daughter, Kaitlyn, is a fifth-grader who pitches for her U10 travel softball team, swims, and plays piano, and loves competing in robotics/engineering. Kaitlyn, we’ve got our eye on you! CHA is a great place to work – just ask your dad.

When Aron isn’t impressing us at work, he loves coaching softball, spending time with his family (we can definitely see why), kayaking, fishing, and watching sports. He’s a big fan of The Ohio State University, the Washington Redskins, and the Washington Capitals. He also enjoys fantasy football, listening to music, and playing poker.

Aron sees himself as part of CHA for years to come. He plans to pursue a master’s degree in information systems or human resources as a way to be an even more effective contributor to CHA, with a goal of someday being a department head. We’re pretty sure, given what we already know, that Aron will achieve whatever goals he sets out to accomplish. We know we’re pretty lucky to work with him already, so we can’t wait to see what the future holds.

We asked Aron, as we do everyone, what fun fact few people know about him. He told us he is a third generation U.S. Navy Sailor. That’s right, third generation. His grandfather served as a gunner’s mate in WWII and his father as a boiler technician during the Vietnam War. Aron is the first of his family to retire from naval service and the first of his family to earn a college degree, and with honors. Is it any wonder we hope he never leaves CHA?

Next time you’re in the office, stop by and thank Aron for his service. Or ask him for fantasy football recommendations. Or for the location of his favorite fishing hole. He may or may not tell you, but we can guarantee that any conversation you have with him will be worth your time!

2018-12-06T11:51:55+00:00December 6th, 2018|

CHA wins DIA contract

Cape Henry Associates (CHA) was recently awarded a one-and-a-half-year contract worth over $2 million. The contract calls for CHA to design products for the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) in support of their objective “to achieve the capabilities of fast autonomous sort, search of threats and exploitation in captured media.” Specifically, CHA will use the latest available technologies in machine learning and convolutional neural networks to build experimental platforms and algorithms tuned to process large DIA datasets and provide faster methods of analyzing captured media. CHA Chief Revenue Officer Chuck Wythe stated, “We’re honored to be working with the DIA on this key capability and look forward to putting the talents and abilities of our incredible staff to work for the benefit of our nation’s intelligence services.”

2018-11-14T16:49:24+00:00November 14th, 2018|

Who in the World of CHA is Eric Davis?

Eric Davis is our stellar Project Lead for manpower, personnel, and training development plans. That is, Eric is instrumental in the development of new and groundbreaking training and support mechanisms for our clients. He is a U.S. Navy veteran who is making a second career out of supporting our military via CHA, where he has now been for almost three years – ok, 2 years and 10 months (he’s a stickler for particulars).

It’s no surprise Eric’s favorite thing about working at CHA is the flexibility that all employees enjoy. It’s that flexibility that helps breed creativity and a passionate desire to provide our clients with the absolute best products. Eric, as project lead, not only benefits from that flexibility but fosters that creativity and fluidity in others. As humble as he is, Eric probably wouldn’t put it quite like that, but those of us lucky enough to work with him know it’s true.

Eric is fun and outgoing and loves a good laugh. Although he can be a man of few words if asked to discuss himself, he makes coming to work something to look forward to. We’re not necessarily saying Mondays are lauded, but Eric definitely makes it easier to say goodbye to the weekend!

Eric is married with four children ranging in age from 21 all the way down to 8. He is, understandably, incredibly proud of all his children from his oldest, Demetrius, a senior at Virginia Commonwealth University and one of their rugby players, to his daughter who is a sophomore at the University of South Florida, to his two younger children who love soccer and track and field and excel at their school in Chesapeake. It doesn’t take long once you meet Eric to understand how important family is to him and how much he enjoys his time with them.

Eric’s hobbies, beyond his family time, include fishing and coaching youth sports. We love that Eric is so giving of his time to not only his family, but to other kids in the community. It’s truly a hallmark of who he is.

Eric believes CHA will continue to be at the forefront of training solutions for military and government customers in the future, propelled largely by C-ARTS, which continues to rack up accolades as it revolutionizes training for the U.S. Navy. We’re confident that with Eric on board CHA’s products and solutions will be innovative and defiant of expectations.

Eric thinks it’s a “secret” that he likes to work with his hands. But given that he loves to coach and fish, it might be more common knowledge than he thinks. Whatever the case, the next time you stop by the office find Eric and ask him about his favorite fishing spots. He may not tell you, but he might let you in on what lures he uses. Maybe. Who knows, maybe your questions will lead him down the rabbit hole to the next CHA training product. Eric’s mind works in truly flexible ways!

2018-10-29T15:05:06+00:00October 29th, 2018|

C-ARTS in the news again

CHA’s innovative C-ARTS system is leading the headlines again. FOA, the Fiber Optic Association, Inc., featured an article about CHA’s newest technology in its September online newsletter. The article focuses on the way C-ARTS is changing how the Navy will train personnel going forward and announces that FOA, working with CACI International, is slated to provide fiber optic training within the C-ARTS-specific-designed Lighthouse system. In addition, FOA has received permission to offer fiber optics technician certification through the Navy’s COOL program. Yet another way CHA is revolutionizing military training.

2018-10-17T11:19:56+00:00October 17th, 2018|

Who in the world of CHA is Samantha Nerys?

This installment of “Who in the world of CHA” features Samantha Nerys, one of our very talented Human Systems Integration Analysts. Samantha, or Sam, has been with CHA for two years as of this past August. She spends her time here determining how many Sailors are needed where, for what purpose, and what training they’ll need to best support the capabilities of their current ship. This is especially close to her heart as Sam is a veteran of the Navy, having spent eight years serving her country and ending her career as an Operations Specialist 2nd class (SW/AW).

Sam says her favorite thing about CHA is the flexibility allowed for the crucial family/work-life balance. Since CHA very firmly believes happy, well-balanced employees are the best employees, we’re glad Sam finds this such a significant draw. Sam will tell you she’s extremely introverted, but we’re not sure we believe her. She does have a tendency to keep to herself and really observe when she first meets a new person, but once she knows you it’s like she’s known you forever! Absolutely every topic under the sun will come up and you’ll probably find yourself laughing quite a bit. In other words, she fits right in here at CHA.

When she’s not enlivening our offices, Sam stays extremely busy as the married mother of two active boys. She loves how busy they keep her, especially when they’re experiencing new things, like this year when the family explored Mexico together and swam with dolphins. When asked what her favorite thing is about her boys she said, “They are fearless and each day they help to ease some of my own fears!”

Speaking of fears (or not), Sam loves international travel. She feels blessed that the Navy sent her around the world for eight years and let her indulge in her obsession with international cuisine. She loves experimenting with the dishes she’s tried in other countries and won’t rest until she has perfectly recreated those dishes at home. She is ecstatic that now that she’s “turned civilian,” she has increased opportunities to explore the globe with her family. She also loves planning parties. Give her any excuse to celebrate and she’ll plan a huge party around it.

Sam loves what CHA is doing for the Navy and predicts that in five years we’ll be doing even bigger things. She believes that expanding our capabilities through our new C-ARTS endeavor will only open more doors for us and that our potential is limitless. You can understand why we think Sam is going to be with CHA for as long as she wants. With enthusiasm, dedication, and talent like she has, she’ll be instrumental in taking us toward that limitless potential.

We asked Sam to tell us something no one else at CHA knows. She responded with this little fact: she comes from a family full of military personnel, but she is the first (and only) woman in her family to serve. We think that deserves a party. Tell us the next time you’re coming to the office and we’ll have Sam plan one. It’s one of the things she loves to do, after all.

2018-10-17T11:04:20+00:00October 10th, 2018|

Who in the world of CHA is Emily Trautwein?

We’re focusing on one of our newer Project Analysts this time, Emily Trautwein. Emily has been a Project Analyst here at CHA since August, but she’s been with us for three years. She started in May 2015 as our receptionist before transitioning to the crazy job of being the vice president’s executive assistant from November 2017 until August of this year. Our vice president didn’t want to lose her, but we like to share the wealth and we’re thrilled she’s bringing her incredible talent to our Project Management Office.

Emily loves her co-workers, which is fortunate because we love her. She loves the mix of humor and fun combined with hard work that defines our workplace. She loves coming to work because she knows everyone is extremely dedicated to the job at hand while fostering a healthy and creative environment, all while working toward the greater purpose of supporting our military forces. While not a veteran herself, Emily enjoys working in support of our military.

We asked Emily how she would describe herself and she initially demurred saying, “These [types of] questions usually trip me up since I don’t really know how to describe myself.” She agreed to let her family try. Her brother said she’s goal-driven, ambitious, caring, compassionate, and extremely intelligent. All things we’d agree with wholeheartedly! Her dad described her as “weird” and one who “enjoys silly humor yet can be very serious, and a perfectionist who loves to learn.” We’re beginning to understand why she fits in so well at CHA! Her mom said Emily is “smart and prepared,” which Emily attributes to her Eagle Scout father who repeated the Scout motto, “Be Prepared” regularly while she was growing up. She does always have some random or unusual tool available whenever needed so it seems to have rubbed off.

Speaking of family, Emily loves spending time with hers, and with her friends when she’s not working or hosting the family shih-tzus, Harpo and Libby (when they’re not running her mom’s or sister’s lives). You’ll often find her exploring First Landing State Park in Virginia Beach, traveling, taking road trips, hiking, or reading and enjoying a good cup of coffee or tea. She’s likely to have a camera with her, as Emily loves photography.

Emily sees CHA staying quite busy with our current work regarding the innovative training system C-ARTS. She thinks the potential and applicability of C-ARTS will only grow and offer more, not just to the Navy but to all the military branches. She sees herself continuing to be part of its development and supporting the growth of this initiative.

While Emily may not know how to describe herself, she did share a couple of fun facts that even her CHA compatriots might not know. She used to be absolutely terrified of heights (and still isn’t a big fan), but she conquered her fear when she visited Notre Dame in France. Since it was her first visit to Europe, and since “everything worth seeing in Europe is tall,” she decided she’d better learn to scale the heights in order to be able to see what she wanted to see. This is Emily in a nutshell: she just won’t let anything stand in her way! It’s why we never want to lose her. Also, she shared that her birthday (December 5) is the same day as Walt Disney’s, which she figures is why she loves Disney movies so much. Now that we know this, we’ve got her birthday cake theme all picked out! Next time you’re in the CHA offices, track Emily down and tell her what your favorite Disney movie is. We’ll take a poll and get her a cake with the “winning” movie’s characters!


2018-10-17T11:04:29+00:00September 26th, 2018|

Who in the world of CHA is Scott Sones?

From brand-new to well-seasoned. We’re excited to feature a longtime CHA employee and member of our Project Management Office this time around. Scott Sones has been with CHA for 10 years (his anniversary is Sept. 22). He works with functional managers to provide project initiation, planning, execution, monitoring, and close-out functions. He’ll tell you it’s straightforward stuff, but juggling all those unplanned events and costs makes his job very interesting. We’re impressed he can make the craziness of the unexpected look so mundane!

Scott loves that CHA provides a small business feel with a sense of transparency and self-sufficiency. That, along with our clients, has made 10 years fly by very quickly. We’ve certainly seen Scott grow professionally in his time here and the skills and knowledge he has gained continue to make him a very valuable team member.

Although Scott would say his goal-oriented, analytical personality makes him seem aloof at times, we see his ability to focus so intensely on a project as an asset, giving us confidence it will be as near to perfect as it can be before our client sees it. He loves to analyze every aspect of something, to pick it apart and figure out exactly what it needs to be for a specific client. Couple that with a desire to understand why a client wants something means that Scott’s projects give the client precisely what they want. So, while Scott might think he’s remote and aloof, we know he’s simply so focused on our clients’ needs that we’re sure to deliver the highest-quality product to them.

Scott spent 20 years serving in the United States Navy and retired as a Senior Chief. When asked about his service, Scott describes it as his “good fortune” to have spent so long dedicated to his country’s needs, and truly enjoyed all the world travel he accomplished. But his absolute favorite things in life are his wife of 28 years, Paula, and their two daughters. Scott and Paula are fortunate to have both adult daughters living in the Hampton Roads area and they all meet once a week to catch up and stay connected. In between time spent with family, Scott and Paula love traveling around the region with friends, trying micro-breweries, and working on classic cars.

Scott is proud that while CHA has grown more technology-focused over the years as Lighthouse continues to evolve, we’ve maintained our core competency within the MPT domain. He believes that in the next few years CHA will develop computer-based training products and technological solutions not previously employed. It’s because of people like Scott that CHA will succeed in these fields and we look forward to his contributions as we move forward.

Scott claims to not have any crazy, fun, hidden facts. He describes his life as “relatively simple.” We think he may be a superhero in disguise, but will respect his right to keep that a secret. His deepest desire is to someday travel the world with Paula. He spent 20 years with the Navy traveling the world, but he wants to share those kinds of experiences with Paula. So, stop by and give him your favorite international destination next time you’re in the office. IF you can pull him away briefly from his intense focus on CHA’s stellar clients.

2018-09-12T09:09:15+00:00September 12th, 2018|
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