c 2009 Europa Technologies Image c 2009 Commonwealth of Virginia US Census Bureau c 2009 Google
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A Destiny Shaped by Phone Calls Retirement has its advantages, but often, the need to be involved in something challenging and relevant trumps the chaise lounge and mint julep. In 1996, I was totally involved in a very successful business wholesaling cheesecakes to every restaurant in the Staunton area. I was doing so well I was trying to find a way to expand my very small home kitchen into something larger and more commercial. My expansion efforts were being thwarted by archaic and unreasonable city codes and regulations. One morning, after a long night of baking, I was just about finished cleaning up when the phone rang. On the phone was an old friend and colleague, Greg R., with whom I had worked in the CIA. After a short exchange of pleasantries he asked me if I would be interested in working as a contractor producer/director for the National Reconnaissance Office. He said I could work my own hours and name my own price. I was floored. I hadn’t thought about the Agency or federal work for two years and now a phone call was going to change all of that, again. Within nine months of that call, my security clearances would be updated and approved, my salary successfully negotiated, and my commute to Chantilly, Virginia began early on a cold, January morning. Headquarters for the National Reconnaissance Office is housed in four uniquely-styled buildings on a treed campus in Chantilly, Virginia. At the time of construction in 1994, the enigmatic facility drew great curiosity from the populous and press. The presence of the classified new headquarters was revealed by the Federation of American Scientists who obtained unclassified copies of the blueprints filed with the building permit application. After 9/11 the blueprints were classified.
Reconnaissance Office NRO National From Cheesecakes to Satellites
My contract work at the NRO lasted for four years. During that time I had the privilege of working with some of the brightest and finest engineers, scientists, technicians, and media experts.  
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