NFSTC earns honors in Ultimate Management Team awards

LARGO, Florida (December, 2009) – The National Forensic Science Technology Center (NFSTC) executive team was recognized by the Tampa Bay Business Journal as one of the area’s top management teams. CEO Kevin Lothridge, COO David Epstein and Chief Projects Officer David Sylvester accepted the award at the Journal’s event in early December.  NFSTC took the 5th spot in a field of 20 finalists. The current management team has worked together since 2003 and has led the organization to new success levels over the past three years.

Selections were based on the organizations achievements and growth in multiple areas.  NFSTC’s highlights include:

Year Over Year Financial Performance and Job Growth

By continually pursuing new business opportunities that fit with NFSTC’s core competencies and partnering with organizations that complement NFSTC’s capabilities, this forward-looking management team has created a flexible organization that can rapidly adjust to the needs of its growing customer base. In addition to providing services to public crime laboratories, NFSTC now serves law enforcement (crime scene, homicide and cold case investigators), medical examiners/coroners and the military. As a result, year over year financial performance and job growth has been significant.

Employee Retention

The NFSTC Executive team is committed to providing the type of work environment that attracts a wide variety of talented professionals.  NFSTC’s rich employment package includes employer paid health benefits and retirement contributions, as well as wellness and professional development benefits beyond what a small organization normally provides.  Overall retention rates of greater than 92% reflect the outstanding results of these efforts.

Creation of a Track Record

Over the years, NFSTC has developed and delivered high quality, well-received projects that have resulted in the creation of a successful track record that opens doors to repeat business and new opportunities.  Sample projects include training and field implementation products:

  • National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs.gov) – for law enforcement, medical examiners/coroners and the general public
  • Forensic Information Data Exchange (FIDEX) – for law enforcement, laboratories and the courts
  • Field Investigation Drug Officer (FIDO) – for law enforcement
  • Quality Documents Program – for forensic laboratories
  • Firearm Examiner Training
  • Trace Evidence and Homicide Investigation Symposiums
  • Collecting DNA Evidence at Property Crime Scenes
  • Principles of Forensic DNA for Officers of the Court
  • DNA Analyst Training

External Branding

With the size and reach of NFSTC expanding from a fairly narrow scientific audience to a much broader base of forensic service providers, it became clear that the organization’s external branding needed to be repositioned. The executive team designated this as a priority item when expanding the staffing levels in 2008 and built an in-house team to not only re-brand, but establish a full communications strategy, brand, Web site, materials and supporting items to create and maintain a system that supports the wider customer base and prospects being developed.

The story can be found at http://tampabay.bizjournals.com/tampabay/stories/2009/12/07/focus8.html.

NFSTC puts PHAZIR™ through its paces

Polychromix PHAZIR handheld near-infrared analyzer
Polychromix handheld PHAZIR™ near-infrared analyzer

Near-infrared spectroscopy is currently utilized in a variety of industries including pharmaceutical manufacturing, agriculture, environmental monitoring and petrochemical production. But is it the right technology for rapidly identifying materials such as controlled substances and explosives? NFSTC recently evaluated the Polychromix PHAZIR™ analyzer to find out. Visit the Technology Evaluations page to download the complete evaluation report.

NFSTC adds dates to the Forensic Biological Screening Workshop series

The National Forensic Science Technology Center (NFSTC), sponsored by the National Institute of Justice, is hosting a series of Forensic Biology Screening Workshops.   The target audience for these workshops is crime scene investigators in training, or with less than one year of experience. Candidates with more experience would be selected on a case-by-case basis and as space allows. 

A series of these workshops will be held at the NFSTC in Largo, FL (Tampa Bay area). The next workshop will be held:

  • January 11-15, 2010
  • February 1-5, 2010
  • March 8-12, 2010
  • April 12-16, 2010

This workshop is hosted by the NFSTC at no cost to participants or their agencies.  Travel arrangements and hotel accommodations are included and participants will be reimbursed at the standard government per diem for the duration of the workshop.

The workshop curriculum includes a written and a practical assessment.  A certificate of completion will be awarded to participants who pass both evaluations. Participants not passing one or both of the evaluations will receive a certificate of attendance.

Workshop attendees must agree to the following:

  • Participate fully in class discussions.
  • Participate fully in laboratory exercises.
  • Participate in written and practical assessments.

To nominate a representative(s) from your agency, please visit www.nfstc.org/meetings.