National Nuclear Security Administration

Secure transport master mechanic wins lifetime achievement award

June 13, 2018

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Alfred Castillo, center, with Frank Lofton, AAR chief inspector, left, and David Jones, AAR vice president of operations.
Alfred Castillo, center, with Frank Lofton, AAR chief inspector, left, and David Jones, AAR vice president of operations.

Aircraft inspector Alfred Castillo of NNSA’s Office of Secure Transportation (OST) has been honored with the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) Charles Taylor Master Mechanic Award in light of his first-class commitment to excellence.  

“Al’s achievements and dedication to our country are just outstanding. OST relies on Al every day to diligently inspect all inbound parts and our aircraft for airworthiness. His efforts are critical to ensuring OST’s aircraft are safe and ready to support missions and nuclear emergency response 24/7” said Alex Bapty, federal director of OST’s Aviation Operations Division.

“Al’s achievements and dedication to our country are just outstanding. OST relies on Al every day to diligently inspect all inbound parts and our aircraft for airworthiness. His efforts are critical to ensuring OST’s aircraft are safe and ready to support missions and nuclear emergency response 24/7” 

Alex Bapty
federal director of OST’s Aviation Operations Division

To be eligible for the lifetime achievement award, nominees must have worked at least five decades as an aircraft maintenance technician, with at least 30 of those years being FAA certified. They must also have no safety violations or suspensions. The award has only been presented six previous times to recipients in New Mexico. As a retired veteran of the U.S. Air Force, twenty years of Castillo’s military aircraft maintenance experience was eligible to be credited towards his fifty years in the industry. He started working on jet fighters in 1961.  

Mr. Castillo is a contract employee with AAR. Frank Lofton, AAR director of quality and chief inspector, nominated Castillo for the award.

“AAR was proud to nominate Al Castillo for this lifetime achievement award, as this speaks well of his dedication and exemplifies our corporate policy of ‘Doing It Right.’ It also speaks well for the maintenance experience and professionalism at OST’s Aviation Operations Division here at Albuquerque,” said Lofton.

The Master Mechanic Award is named in honor of Charles Taylor, the first aviation mechanic in powered flight. It is the most prestigious honor the FAA issues to persons certified under Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations Part 65, or airmen other than flight crew members.

OST’s aviation fleet consists of two Boeing 737-400 Combi (passenger/cargo) aircraft and a DC-9 Cargo aircraft housed at Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque. AAR has provided logistics and aircraft support, including repair work, for NNSA since December 2011.