Sandia Labs News Releases

Former Army ranger receives Sandia-Livermore Chamber of Commerce Student of the Year Award

LIVERMORE, Calif – Former Army ranger Damon Alcorn has received the Sandia National Laboratories-Livermore Chamber of Commerce Student of the Year Award. Presented at the chamber’s State of the City Luncheon on June 23, the annual award highlights a Las Positas College student who demonstrates exemplary academic achievements and leadership.

Damon Alcron has received the Sandia-Livermore Chamber Award

Las Positas College President Barry Russell, left, and Sandia/California Community Relations Officer Madeline Burchard, right, present Damon Alcorn with the Sandia National Laboratories-Livermore Chamber of Commerce Student of the Year Award. (Photo by Michael Padilla) Click on the thumbnail for a high-resolution image.

Born and raised in the Bay Area, Alcorn graduated cum laude from California State University, East Bay, in 2004 with a bachelor’s in history. That same year Alcorn enlisted in the U.S. Army. After completing infantry training, airborne school and the Ranger Indoctrination Program, he was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment.

After his military service, Alcorn received a master’s in liberal arts from California State University, Sacramento. After graduation he worked in the private sector in corporate communications and public relations.

In 2012, he enrolled at Las Positas College where he studied computer science and network security and administration. This spring, Alcorn received an associate of science in engineering technology.

In the fall of 2014, Alcorn joined the Engineering Technology Program at Las Positas, a collaboration between the college and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). In the summer of 2015, Alcorn interned at LLNL’s National Ignition Facility and was hired as a student employee by the lab’s Institute for Scientific Computing Research. Simultaneously, he participated in NASA’s National Community College Aerospace Scholars program at the Armstrong Flight Research Center at Edwards Air Force Base.

Next month he will begin pursuing a master of science in computer science at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey.

Madeline Burchard, community relations officer for Sandia/California, who helped present the award to Alcorn, said education in science, technology, engineering and math fields is a key element of Sandia’s mission.

“Since Sandia National Labs’ inception, we have invested in education,” Burchard said. “It is part of our culture to give back and it’s a value that we have carried over the last 66 years. We want to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers.”

Sandia National Laboratories is a multi-program laboratory operated by Sandia Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Lockheed Martin Corp., for the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration. With main facilities in Albuquerque, N.M., and Livermore, Calif., Sandia has major R&D responsibilities in national security, energy and environmental technologies and economic competitiveness.

Sandia news media contact: Michael Padilla,, (925) 294-2447