William Lietzau, director of the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency, on Aug. 27 presented Peerless Technologies Corporation with the 2020 James S. Cogswell Outstanding Industrial Security Achievement Award, the agency’s top honor. Only 61 companies out of more than 12,500 cleared facilities were recognized in 2020, agency official said.

Lietzau noted that protection of critical knowledge is his agency’s top priority, and companies like Peerless are a vital partner in helping prevent adversary nations from stealing vital knowledge.

“Your culture of security is our best protection,” Lietzau said.

The Cogswell Award recognizes the top security programs that exemplify best practices for other companies as part of the partnership between industry and government to ensure protection of classified information and programs.  Established in 1966, the award honors the legacy of Air Force Col. James S. Cogswell, the first chief of industrial security for the Department of Defense.

“Security is everyone’s concern at Peerless, and we’re proud to do our part,” said Peerless President Michael Bridges. “It’s also a testament to the hard work and dedication of our Facility Security Officer, Bob Lilje.”

“Bob has established a robust security plan and rigorous processes, and he’s also led the way in establishing a culture that exceeds expectations in every way,” Bridges said.

The award is the culmination of a months-long evaluation and vetting process that includes reviews of nominations by a national review team, vetting nominations with external agencies and developing ranked lists for final approval by DSCA’s top leaders.  To even be considered for nomination, a facility must have received two consecutive “Superior” ratings by the DCSA.

Award criteria include establishing and maintaining a security program that far exceeds the basic National Industrial Security Program requirements; and providing leadership to other cleared facilities in establishing best practices while maintaining the highest standards for security.

“The Cogswell award is something you had to work at, and I appreciate your security teams that made it possible,” Lietzau said.

Celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, Peerless has grown into an award-winning professional services, engineering and cybersecurity firm supporting numerous aspects of national security, with almost 500 employees nationwide and operating at $100M annualized sales.

Peerless has supported a wide variety of federal clients, including the Air Force, Army, Navy, NASA, Department of Homeland Security, Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Homeland Security, Defense Logistics Agency, Defense Information Systems Agency, Department of Energy and General Services Administration.