Electro-Optics Engineer Talks Landing Dream Job; Offers Tech Career Advice
In first grade, Billy Maloof had a vision board of what he wanted to be when he grew up.
It read: When I become a father, I’ll be just like my dad an army man. My brother will too? I love my brother.
The pencil handwriting would ring true years later, following in his dad’s footsteps to work for Lockheed Martin as an “Army Man.”
When watching TV, his dad Sam, who worked at the Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control division for 30 years as a quality assurance manager, would point out products on which he worked. Attending “Take Your Child to Work Day” and “Family Day”, Billy would see product displays and video demos, including watching an Apache helicopter land.
“I was like a kid in a candy store,” Billy said. “I saw so many missiles and military product displays that I used to think my dad was in the Army, and I wanted to be just like him. I have always wanted to help defend our country and I thought this was the best way I could do that. I felt, and still feel, that this is an amazing company that provides me with opportunities to help make a difference.”
Several decades later, his vision board became a reality. Billy now serves as an Engineering and Technology Manager and engineer at Missiles and Fire Control.
“I first remember learning about infrared in the 1987 movie Predator, watching Desert Storm briefings on TV and while checking out live-displays at the Lockheed Martin Family Day. I also love art and can appreciate seeing imagery, so naturally I selected infrared imaging and developed a career development plan to learn more about it.”
His brother, Jonathan, also works at Missiles and Fire Control.
“My father had a huge sense of pride for the programs and the types of products we provide. I have a better understanding now that my brother and I have children of our own, and we share the importance of work ethic and relationships in the workplace,” Jonathan said. “We lead by example within our peers, but most everyone does not ever think about the legacy we may leave for others to follow.
On a typical day, Billy will perform sensor analysis in support of different contracts and proposals, along with managing a team of 11 and meeting with customers.
“My favorite part about working at Lockheed Martin is that we are working on cutting-edge, industry-leading technologies that help defend our country and our allies. Another favorite part is the people. Working at Lockheed Martin is more than just a job. It’s a career and the employees are a second family to me. The Lockheed Martin employees are top-notch people, and I’m proud to work among these outstanding people.”
Nineteen years into his career at Lockheed Martin, two main lessons he’s learned so far are:
1. When given conflicting tasks, do not be afraid to ask your manager to prioritize tasks for you.
2. When measuring data, it’s critical to always bring expected absolute results.
He encourages anyone interested in a technical career to continuously learn about that topic, even after graduating college. Reading technical books and journals, taking training courses, finding a mentor in the tech space, attending industry conferences and taking on stretch assignments are all ways to enhance a technical career.
Learn more about a career like Billy’s at the link below.