Ely has won Society of Manufacturing Engineers's Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer Award for her exceptional contributions to the industry


Meet Northrop Grumman award-winning engineer, Ely Brooks

Meet Northrop Grumman award-winning engineer, Ely Brooks

Inspiring women working in the aerospace and defense industry at Northrop Grumman share their experiences in their STEM careers. From engineers to program managers to software and digital technology managers, these women have incredible stories to share.

Ely Brooks is a Manager of Manufacturing Technology and Advanced Automation at Northrop grumman and the winner of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers's Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer Award, which recognizes manufacturing engineers, age 35 or younger, who have made exceptional contributions to the industry. 

Ely is delighted to win this pretigious award. "It’s humbling and sure means a whole lot. I wouldn’t be where I am today if it weren’t for many others who have guided and mentored me along the way. I ask a lot of questions; that’s how I best learn new concepts," she says. "So, I have many people to thank for this award — the list is long. On a more important and personal note, it’s a reminder of the sacrifices my parents made for my sister and me when we moved from Puerto Rico to Florida for a better life."

From intern to engineer

Manufacturing - NOrthrop Grumman

Ely became a member of the Northrop Grumman family as a college intern at the St. Augustine site. After graduating from the University of Florida with a degree in mechanical engineering, she began as a full-time industrial engineer, supporting the E-2C/D, EA-6B and F-5 programs. Over the past 12 years, she continued to demonstrate an innate ability to master core aerospace manufacturing principles and effectively communicate them from shop floor to top floor and back again.

Amazing moments in her career 

For Ely, the most rewarding moment in her career so far at Northrop Grumman was being part of the team that won the Aerospace Systems President’s Award for the B-2 aft deck automated assembly line. Ely was responsible for the robot implementation and making it live. This was her site’s first robot, and it helped establish St. Augustine as a center of excellence

"Seeing that robot successfully drill its first hole on a B-2 aft deck was an amazing moment," adds Ely.

The importance of teamwork

A key skill that unites Northrop Grumman engineers is teamwork, and Ely understands the importance of this to make sure everything runs smoothly.
 

"Teamwork isn’t some cheesy catchphrase to me — it’s how things actually get done. I currently manage a small team of engineers within our Advanced Manufacturing and Technology organization, and the only way we accomplish things is together. We celebrate our successes and failures together and help each other out. We are united in our mission," says Ely.

Leaders in the industry

According to Ely, it's stratedgy that sets Northrop Grumman apart in terms of advanced manufacturing.

"The number of new technologies out there is almost overwhelming, and so many of them attract a lot of hype. I think we’re really good at deciphering what manufacturing technologies are the right ones for us to invest in and implement so we can continue to lead in our industry and provide innovative products and solutions to our customer: the warfighter," says Ely.

"So far in my career, I’ve been fortunate to have worked on various programs like the B-2, E-2C/D, F-5 and EA-6B. I’ve not only had the privilege to build aircraft that support our brave warfighters but also work alongside many veterans every day. Hearing them talk firsthand about their experiences and how our products help them complete their mission is highly rewarding."

Join talented women like Ely and Gail at Northrop Grumman

Northrop Grumman is a prime employer for women and leads the way in shattering perceptions about women technologists. If you want to join talented women at Northrop Grumman, search and apply for many fabulous career opportunities. 

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