SIGNAL Magazine's Sparky Baird Award

This annual award is given to the author(s) of the outstanding SIGNAL Magazine article of the year.

The W.J. "Sparky" Baird Award is named after COL W.J. Baird, USA (Ret.), former general manager of AFCEA and editor of SIGNAL Magazine. COL Baird became editor of SIGNAL in 1956 and held that position for 18 years. He assumed the additional duty of AFCEA general manager in 1959. That position became AFCEA President in 1977.

Note: Nominations are not solicited for this award. The Sparky Baird Award winner is chosen by an independent panel of judges from government, industry and media.


2019 Sparky Baird Award Winner

Nicola Whiting


"Cyberspace Triggers a New Kind of Arms Race"

SIGNAL Magazine, February 2018


2018 Sparky Baird Award Winner

Adam B. Jonas

U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command G-2/Threat Tec LLC

"How the Hashtag is Changing Warfare"

SIGNAL Magazine, June 2017


Past Winners

2017 Sparky Baird Award Winner

CSM Rodney Dale Harris, USA (Ret)

"Army Braces for a Culture Clash"

SIGNAL Magazine, January 2016

2016 Sparky Baird Award Winners

Lt Col David R. Waller, USAF

United States Special Operations Command

MAJ Ernest H. Jenkins, USA

United States Central Command

LCDR Christina M. Hicks, USN

Naval Computer and Telecommunications Area Master Station Atlantic

"The Network of the Future is Needed Now"

SIGNAL Magazine, December 2015

2015 Sparky Baird Award Winner

Col M. Thomas Davis, USA (Ret.)

"Defense Acquisition, Meet Moore's Law"

SIGNAL Magazine, August 2014

2014 Sparky Baird Award Winner

1st Lt Robert Lee, USAF

"The Failing of Air Force Cyber"

SIGNAL Magazine, November 2013

2013 Sparky Baird Award Winners

Frank Klucznik

Capt. Michael Stephens, USAF

"The Tactical Edge Sees Data Interoperability"

SIGNAL Magazine, November 2012

2012 Sparky Baird Award Winner

Paul Strassman

"A Culture Shock Is Coming"

SIGNAL Magazine, July 2011

2011 Sparky Baird Award Winner

James Bussert

"China Enters the Aircraft Carrier Club"

SIGNAL Magazine, April 2010

2010 Sparky Baird Award Winners

Carol Scheina

Gabe Mounce

Daniel Ward

"Twitter is Mission Critical"

SIGNAL Magazine, October 2009

2009 Sparky Baird Award Winner

Diana Raschke

"Asymmetric Warfare Requires Intelligence Community Reorganization"

SIGNAL Magazine, April 2008

2008 Sparky Baird Award Winner

Vinh Nguyen

"Current Trends in Intelligence Outsourcing Affect Workforce Stability"

SIGNAL Magazine, December 2007


Complete list of AFCEA Awards and nomination forms.

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