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Ms. Makayla J. Holt

Award: Rosenblatt Young Naval Engineer Award
Year: 2023
Recipient: Ms. Makayla J. Holt
Reason: for her significant contribution to naval engineering as set forth in the following  


Ms. Makayla Holt began her naval engineering career as a Naval Research Enterprise Internship Program (NREIP) intern at the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Philadelphia Division in 2013. After earning her Bachelor's and Master’s degrees in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Rowan University, and obtaining a PMP certification, she returned to work full-time in 2014 at NSWC Philadelphia Division.

Ms. Holt is now serving as the Guided Missile Frigate FFG 62 Auxiliary Systems Engineering Manager. In this role, she oversees ship specifications, adheres to Navy guidelines, and coordinates technical assessments. Previously, Ms. Holt supported Oil Pollution Abatement systems and contributed to the LCS Full Ship Shock Trial Live Fire Test and Evaluation Team, which earned a NAVSEA Team Excellence award.

Ms. Holt has demonstrated remarkable expertise and leadership in her role as the FFG 62 Auxiliaries SEM at the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Philadelphia Division.  She has successfully managed diverse systems, leading to a triumphant Critical Design Review (CDR) for the program. Her adept handling of complex feedback from Technical Warrant Holders and experts has ensured timely milestone achievements. Recognized for her dedication, Ms. Holt received high accolades and commendations from the FFG 62 Program Manager, CAPT Kevin Smith, highlighting her extensive knowledge and valuable contributions to the ship's auxiliary systems.

In her capacity as a subject matter expert (SME) for the Oil Pollution Abatement (OPA) system, Ms. Holt has been instrumental in assessing and upgrading OPA systems across various ship classes including LCS Freedom & Independent Classes, and the emergent FFG Reactivation Project. Her efforts include leading critical inspections, technical assistance, and system health assessments which have significantly enhanced operational standards and compliance across the fleet. Additionally, Ms. Holt's oversight of the Oil Content Monitor (OCM) Program has improved operational capabilities, showcasing her ability to lead complex projects and provide strategic guidance.

Beyond her technical roles, Ms. Holt is deeply committed to STEM outreach and mentoring, continually working to inspire future generations in naval engineering. Passionate about STEM outreach, she mentors interns, volunteers for programs like Girl Scouts, STEM summer camps, and promotes inclusivity through various employee resource groups and initiatives like the Many Voices Initiative. 

An active member of ASNE since 2014, she has held several leadership roles, including on the ASNE-Delaware Valley Section board and as an elected member of the ASNE National Council, contributing significantly to the society and the naval engineering field.

Her active participation in ASNE, and her role in revitalizing the ASNE-Delaware Valley Section demonstrate her dedication to community and professional development. Her efforts in recruitment, mentoring, and community engagement highlight her comprehensive approach to leadership, making significant impacts both within and beyond her professional sphere.

The American Society of Naval Engineers is proud to recognize Ms. Makayla J. Holt as the recipient of the 2023 Rosenblatt “Young Naval Engineer” Award.