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*Ernest Levert was born on this date in 1954. He is a black welding engineer and material science engineer.
His parents were William and Gertrude Levert. Ernest D. Levert grew up in Cleveland and attended Max S. Hayes High School. He interned with NASA at the John H. Glenn Research Center as a sophomore. He graduated from Max S. Hayes High School in 1972. Then, after working briefly as a tool and die welder at Club Products in Cleveland, Levert served a tour of duty in the U.S. Navy during the Vietnam War and attended the U.S. Navy's C-1 Welding School. Levert graduated from Ohio State University in 1982 with his B.S. degree in welding engineering, specializing in laser-beam and electron-beam welding.
In 1986, Levert joined Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control Division in Dallas, Texas. He worked on NASA and the U.S. Department of Defense projects that included the International Space Station and the Army Tactical Missile System. His division created and implemented photovoltaic radiators for the International Space Station's crew areas and removed excess heat. He also developed a system of elbow tubing designed to carry coolant gases in radiators that are part of the Space Station. In 1996, Levert became Senior Staff Manufacturing Engineer at Lockheed Martin; by 2000, his team had successfully welded 284 missiles. In 2009, he contributed a chapter to the book, Sparking the Future: National Center for Welding Education and Training, published by the Welding Education Center.
He has written procedures and developed policies and processes that provide essential structural integrity and allow verifiable and secure access to foreign markets for many Lockheed Martin products. As a result of his innovative solutions, he has helped put Lockheed Martin excel in welding sciences. Levert was the first Black to serve as President of the American Welding Society in 2002. As a student, he served as chairman of the American Welding Society's O.S.U. Student chapter.
He was honored with the Outstanding Alumni Award from Ohio State University's School of Engineering in 2004 and with the NOVA Award for Outstanding leadership from Lockheed Martin in 2006. Mr. Levert is an internationally recognized Welding Engineering Subject Matter Expert (S.M.E.) specializing in Power Beam Technologies (Laser and Electron Beam Welding). His work focuses on applying his welding engineering expertise to solve technical challenges across the corporation, leading training for production operations, and conducting research for new projects. Levert has traveled the globe sharing his expertise in laser and electron beam welding processes across Lockheed Martin and with colleagues worldwide.
He is also a Lockheed Martin Fellow, representing less than 1 percent of the company's technical workforce at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control in Dallas. The Lockheed Martin Fellows Program provides a career path while inspiring an esprit de corps designed to promote technical achievement within the corporation. Some of the programs he supports include the International Space Station Thermal Control Units Program, Patriot Advanced Capability (PAC-3), Army Tactical Missile System (Army TACMS), Line-of-Sight Antitank Weapon System (LOSAT), Joint Strike Fighter Program (JSF-F35), Advanced Missile Programs, Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) project, and the Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS).
Levert participates in multiple STEM events, including BEYA career fair activities, career day events, and Engineers' Week events. He frequently attends the Ohio State Minority Engineering Program banquet as a role model to current students. He also shares advice and subject matter expertise with other professionals. He was instrumental in establishing the Boy Scouts of America Welding Merit Badge, and today half of the Eagle Scouts in his troop are pursuing STEM/engineering careers. Levert says: "If it can help one person, and that person helps another, then we can be successful in changing the world."