NEWS | Nov. 22, 2011

Dr. Virginia DeGiorgi Selected One of Top Ten Business Women in 2012 by ABWA

By Donna McKinney

Dr.Virginia DeGiorgi, a mechanical engineer and section head of the System Design and Integration Section of the Materials Science and Technology Division (MS&TD) at NRL, was recently selected one of the Top Ten 2012 Business Women by the American Business Women's Association (ABWA). She is recognized as a talented scientific researcher, program manager and team leader in corrosion system modeling.

DeGiorgi worked at the Westinghouse Nuclear Component Division, at both Tampa and Pensacola, Florida sites from 1977-1980, supporting the Breeder Reactor Components Project. In 1982, she was both the youngest and first woman nominated and awarded the B.G. Lamme corporate scholarship, which was an internal Westinghouse competitive scholarship. This full scholarship enabled DeGiorgi to attend the Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, where she studied Fracture Mechanics.

DeGiorgi then came to NRL in 1986, as a contract employee where she performed research in fracture of high-strength, high-toughness steels. She was a contract employee for less than three months after which she transitioned to government employment. DeGiorgi attained her present position as a section head in 2000. Since 2001, she has served on part-time detail to the Office of Naval Research (ONR) in the areas of TechSolutions/Swampworks and Future Naval Capability (FNC) Management Support.

DeGiorgi earned her bachelor's and master's degrees in Civil Engineering with Honors from the University of Kentucky, Louisville, Ky., both in 1980, and her doctorate from Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas, in 1986.

DeGiorgi's numerous awards/honors include: the Women in Construction Award sponsored by the National Association of Women in Construction, 1978; Women of the Year Award by the ABWA, 1991; Sigma Xi Award, 1995; the Technical Cooperation Program (TTCP) Award for Non-Atomic Military Research and Development, 1994/1995; ONR Chief of Naval Research Award of Merit for Group Achievement for TechSolutions, 2003; ACME Fellowship in 2004; Professional Award in Engineering, University of Kentucky, 2006; and Woman of the Year Award, ABWA, 2008.

Her professional society memberships include: the ABWA, American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM), Federally Employed Women (FEW), Women in Science and Engineering (WISE), and Fellowships of both the Wessex Institute of Technology and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). DeGiorgi has authored or co-authored 147 technical publications.

ABWA, founded in 1949, has thousands of members in chapters and Express Networks nation-wide. The organization provides business training and networking opportunities for women of diverse occupations and backgrounds. ABWA has dedicated more than half a century to women's education and provided work-place skills and career development training for more than 545,000 members.