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Serving the Soldier is a family affair for Bob Hill and Erica Mitchell.

Not many father-daughter duos can lay claim to starting their careers in the same building, but that’s exactly how Hill and Mitchell began – in building 5400, home to the Combat Capabilities Development Command Aviation & Missile Center. It was just the beginning of a family legacy that heavily focuses on the warfighter.

“My parents instilled in me from a young age the importance of doing our part to serve our country and do good in the world,” said Mitchell, a missile science and technology systems engineer for the CCDC AvMC Technology Development Directorate. “I believe that the men and women who serve and protect us every day deserve to have someone working in their favor behind the scenes. I feel that being an engineer in the government services allows me to do my part in serving our country and supporting our military personnel. Engineering gives me the opportunity to grow personally and aid in the technologies that will shape the future.”

Hill agreed.

“The great thing about engineering in general and working on Redstone Arsenal specifically is that we are at the center of the development of new technology which supports our warfighters,” said Hill, who now works for the Space and Missile Defense Command. “It is good to know that something you’re working on today may help the Soldiers in the field in the future.”  

Hill began working in building 5400 in 1985 as a new graduate engineer in the human engineering lab with the fiber optic guided missile program before transitioning to what is now known as SMDC in 1986. A little more than three decades later Mitchell followed in her father’s footsteps, starting as an intern with the navigation group in 2017, a position her father encouraged her to take.

“I don’t remember a time where I didn’t want to do something similar to my dad,” said Mitchell, who makes it a point to meet her father for lunch once a week. “I wrote papers on wanting to be an engineer through middle and high school. Every time someone asked me what I wanted to do in life my answer was always the same, ‘Be an engineer for the Army.’ My dad would take me to work with him and I remember being so fascinated by everything he and those around him did. I’ve always been very proud of his work for the Army and knew that this was my calling as well.”

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