U.S. Army Operational Testers' Hall of Fame

  Mr. Laurence A. Womack

Inducted September 29, 2016
August 16, 1948 - February 1, 2013
Field Artillery Specialist
Modeling and Simulation Officer
Fires Test Directorate
Fort Sill, Oklahoma, 1989-2013

Laurence Alston Womack served in support of operational testing for over 24 years.  While still on active duty as a Field Artillery Officer, he was assigned as a Research Development Officer for over nine years.  From 1989 to 1992, he served as a military operational test officer in the U.S. Army Field Artillery Board, TEXCOM, which was renamed the Fire Support Test Directorate (FSTD), and then Fires Test Directorate (FTD).  He conducted multiple operational tests of fire support systems and retired from Active Duty as a Lieutenant Colonel in April of 1992.  Subsequently, Mr. Womack served as a Department of the Army Civilian operational tester for an additional 21 years, making exceptional contributions to U.S. Army operational testing through continuous exemplary service.

During his 24 years in Fires operational testing (military and civilian), Mr. Womack planned and executed 25 different tests, some as large as division and multi-service exercises.  As the first Fires Test Directorate Modeling and Simulation Officer, he provided instrumentation support to another 43 tests conducted by the Fires Test Directorate and other U.S. Army Operational Test Command test directorates.

Mr. Womack built and enhanced the Extensible C4I Instrumentation Suite (ExCIS) Fire Support Application (FSA) program.  He brought the system from a stand-alone capability, which only impacted the fire support community, to a robust system capability whose architecture and technical underpinnings have been expanded to be an integrated suite that supports event planning, preparation, operations, data collection, and analysis.  The ExCIS FSA, FTD's premier instrumentation system, was awarded two U.S. Army Modeling and Simulation Awards in 2008 and 2011, and is now used at Army simulation centers worldwide as the fire support simulation model.  Mr. Womack was also the proponent for USAOTC's Geometric Automated Video Enhanced Location System (GAVELS), which is the command's standard for ground and air-drop systems tracking and monitoring at test locations across the country.

In 1998, Mr. Womack was selected as the USAOTC Tester of the Year.  His grasp of tactical fire-support software and operational-testing concepts enhanced the planning, conduct, and reporting of operational tests for the Advanced Field Artillery Tactical Data System by providing flexible, responsive, and cost-effective test procedures and instrumentation.  By using instrumentation in lieu of tactical systems with the associated Soldier operators, maintainers, and support costs, Mr. Womack provided a cost avoidance of $6.8 million for one operational test.

Mr. Womack demonstrated outstanding effort, leadership, and achievements that inspired others in the area of operational testing.  He was tenacious, focused, and driven; his contributions to the Army's fire support and simulation communities are enduring and still vibrant.  Both of the instrumentation systems, developed and managed by Mr. Womack, are used annually in multiple tests and simulations within the operational and developmental test and simulation communities.

Mr. Womack remained with FTD as a Department of the Army Civilian employee until his passing on February 1, 2013.  He has left a legacy for Fires operational testing and Fires modeling and simulation for the operational testing community.