David Augustine retires after 39 years of service

David Augustine

On his first day of work in December 1977, David Augustine was directed to go to Industrial Building 3, where he worked in the Technical Division’s Magnet Factory. After six months, he transferred to the Accelerator Division’s Mechanical Support Department (MSD). As Dave states, “I have not been bored since.”

Dave calls himself a Tevatron baby, meaning that he was part of the large number of technicians who were involved in the installation, operation and maintenance of the lab’s most famous accelerator. But Dave’s knowledge of the workings of the accelerator extended beyond the Tevatron.

“Dave prides himself in knowing how to make the accelerator work,” said Patrick Hurh, AD Target Systems Department and former MSD head. “He has become MSD’s face to operations.”

From the Linac, through the Booster and Main Injector, and into the external beamlines, Dave understands the vacuum systems, mechanical assemblies, the process fluids systems, the control systems, the safety systems and the interlock systems. He has developed into a dependable operations manager who can coordinate the efforts of multiple groups of people of differing backgrounds simultaneously for a complex project.

But when asked about Dave, people agree with Dan Johnson’s (AD’s Accelerator Operations Department head) sentiment: “Dave knows so much. He stays on top of the (accelerator) logbook so he is aware of what is going on. And he is part of the “can-do” attitude. He pushes his team to do what it takes to get the job done.”

“Dave shines during times when there is a need for an urgent response,” Patrick said. “He loves to contribute to the solution.”

In addition to working on planned and unplanned work for different parts of the accelerator complex, Dave has developed online databases for the department, such as the leave calendar and request system, the overtime request, and the contractor effort database. MSD’s online purchase system has been so effective in tracking purchases that it has become the tool for purchases in all of the Accelerator Division.

“Dave has remained active and integrated in the job for all these years,” said Duane Newhart of the AD Accelerator Operations Department. Dave has a deep institutional knowledge base of the workings of the accelerator complex and the lab. For these reasons, Dave will be missed.

When asked what he will miss most about the lab, Dave says, “The people. They bring all of the flavor to the job. It is not a single person, and it is not the same person, who gets the job done. It is usually a bunch of people with different skills. I really like working with so many smart people.”

If you would like to say farewell, then join Dave at his retirement party on Thursday, May 11, at 11:30 a.m. at the Stonebridge Country Club at 2705 Stonebridge Blvd., Aurora. Please contact Ruth Becker at x4736 by May 5 to register for the luncheon.

Dave’s last day is May 30, 2017. He and his wife Diane look forward to their upcoming move to Florida.