The SoCal Chapter

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Please join us on the “ICEAA SoCal Chapter” LinkedIn group as well for updates or to share and collaborate on an ongoing basis!

Thanks for joining us at the SoCal Spring 2024 Workshop!

We had a great spring workshop on March 21, 2024!  We had an incredible list of speakers, including:

  • Keynote Speaker: Eric Herzig, Director of Finance Operations, Space Propulsion & Power Systems, Aerojet Rocketdyne
  • Kevin Terry – presenting “The Estimator’s Guide to a Parametric Universe”
  • Irina Litchfield – Entrepreneur in FinTech, SpaceFund advisor, and speaker with over 100 international appearances
  • Renee Marchiano – Edwards AFB Flight Test Museum curator presenting “Tiki Torch: How to Obtain Historical Cost Data from Museums and Libraries”
  • Madhu Thangavelu – USC Engineering/Architecture professor and expert in the design of complex space projects, including space stations and exploratory missions

We also took a group tour of the Aerojet Rocketdyne manufacturing campus, where they house an additive manufacturing laboratory.

Papers will be posted soon.  And We plan to schedule a webinar to see Dr. Madhu’s Presentation.

Thank you to all who participated in our workshop on October 17th in Long Beach, CA.

We had a wonderful event, hosted by Galorath Incorporated, at Boeing in Long Beach.

Review the Presentation here:

Karen McRitchie – Best in Class Costing

Justin Knowles – Estimating in Strategy

Conner Lawston – Generative AI for Government

We had a presentation from a high school team from Romania’s International Space Development Conference (ISDC). The team won second place in the National Space Society-run competition in May 2023 for their design of a permanent space settlement.

We also had a field-trip to Long Beach Airport’s Art-Deco Historic Terminal, where we got a tour of “one of the ten most beautiful airports in the world” (BBC, 2014).


The Southern California Chapter was very active at the National workshop in San Antonio!  Thank you to all who participated.






Exploring Uncertainty and Risk
Kurt Brunner, Leidos

Is it a “risk”? Or are you “uncertain”? Either way, it’s definitely NOT risky to join the ICEAA Southern California Chapter for a webinar on Cost Risk and Uncertainty on April 12 at 11:30 Pacific.

You’ll learn the difference between Risk and Uncertainty, why you want to perform Cost Risk or Uncertainty Analysis, how to quantify the unknowns, relation to the Risk “Cube”, “S” Curves and Confidence Levels, and more!

In addition, the SoCal Chapter will share news of Chapter activities and plans. And, as usual, you’ll have a chance to win the SoCal ICEAA Chapter Challenge Coin!

Speaker: Kurt Brunner, Leidos

Slides Download (PDF)

The ICEAA SoCal Chapter held their FIRST in-person Workshop since 2019 on November 30, 2022. Our program featured networking, trivia games, chapter news, and an impressive lineup of presentations:

Mr. Raj Palejwala
Chief, Cost Estimating and Earned Value Division, Space Systems Command
Keynote Address

Dr. Danny Polidi
Raytheon Technologies
Linking System Cost Model to System Optimization Using A Cost Sensitivity Algorithm

Steve Sterk, CPP
Artemis Future Missions

Patrick Malone, Systems Planning and Analysis (SPA); Henry Apgar, retired; and William King, Systems Planning and Analysis (SPA);
Cost Estimating Maturity and a Vision for the Future

SoCal Chapter DTC Team: Hank Apgar, retired; Dr. Lisa Colabella, The Rand Corporation; Justin Knowles, Northrop Grumman; Karen Mourikas, The Boeing Company
Design to Cost Course Preview and Feedback Session

Hosted by Tecolote Research, Inc.
2120 E Grand Ave, Suite 200, El Segundo, CA 902452120 E Grand Ave, Suite 200, El Segundo, CA 90245

Download the workshop agenda (PDF)

Digital Engineering Implications on Weapon System Costs

Join the ICEAA Southern California Chapter for an informative webinar, plus we’ll be discussing Chapter election, the DTC course, and our FACE-TO-FACE December meeting!

Defense programs have been implementing digital engineering (DE) throughout the acquisition lifecycle to develop, manufacture, and sustain their platforms.  This presentation will focus on the impact of DE implementation on cost estimates, suggesting key considerations.

Speaker: Brittany Clayton
Brittany Clayton is an Operations Researcher at the RAND Corporation. She supports projects focused on lifecycle cost estimating and defense acquisition policy. She has a master’s degree in Operations Research from George Mason University and a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Washington & Jefferson College.

Leveraging Multi-Monitor Run-Time Assurance

The business challenge of fielding a safety system in a military acquisition process centered around fighting capability.  The presentation will cover how an advanced safety system was advocated in a system and amongst decision makers that have been trained to manage attrition and losses in force structure.  It was ultimately the business case that made the difference in the Air Force accepting an advanced safety technology over other systems geared towards increasing fighting power.

Speaker: Mark Skoog
Former Principal Investigator for Autonomy
NASA / Armstrong Flight Research Center

Mark Skoog recently retired from NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center as their Principal Investigator for Autonomy. He recently finished leading a collaborative effort between NASA, the FAA, DoD and Industry to develop certification methods for autonomous vehicles. He graduated from California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo. Over the past 41 years he has supported numerous NASA and the Air Force fighter and UAV research efforts as well as test and evaluation of the F-16, B-2 and Global Hawk. Focus areas have included the integration of digital flight controls and avionics with high authority autopilots to automatically accomplish all phases of fighter combat missions. Much of his career has been dedicated to the development of full vehicle autonomy and automatic collision avoidance systems, for both ground and air. He has recently established the company Innovative Autonomy, a research lab dedicated to the development and advancement of autonomous systems.

Southern California Chapter Virtual Workshop
Date: December 1, 2021

Get to the Point. What’s the Deal with Different Function Points Methodologies PDF Presentation
Get to the Point. What’s the Deal with Different Function Points Methodologies Dissertation

GAO Best Practice Guide PDF Presentation

SoCal Webinar General Slides

Join the ICEAA Southern California Chapter for our last virtual luncheon webinar of the year. We will be soliciting your inputs for activities and events for the chapter in 2022.

Our 90 minute program includes the following speakers:

  • Anandi Hira from Tecolote Research Inc. who specializes in cost estimation methods for software development programs will present Get to the Point. What’s the Deal with Different Function Points Methodologies.
    • Abstract: Since the development of IFPUG Function Points (FPs), many variants have emerged to simplify software sizing and improve cost estimation. Which of these sizing techniques should one use? To understand differences among methods, we compare IFPUG FPs, COSMIC FPs, and Simple FPs for effort estimation on University of Southern California (USC)’s dataset of Unified Code Count (UCC) enhancements. Additionally, we investigate automated tools to understand the correlation between Objective FPs and the other FPs methods.
  • Brian Bothwell from the Government Accountability Office, which supports assessments of cost estimating, scheduling, EVM, AOAs, and technology readiness, will present GAO Best Practice Guides.
    • Abstract: This presentation will cover GAO’s responsibilities, introduce the best practice guides GAO uses and briefly describe their development, and discuss how the guides’ criteria are used in audits through the presentation of 2 or 3 case studies.

Bugs, Bugs, and More Bugs

August 19, 2021

What do “bugs” and ICEAA have in common? To find out, join the ICEAA SoCal Chapter for our Summer 2021 Webinar on August 19 from 11:30 to 1 Pacific titled “Bugs, Bugs, and More Bugs!”

We have invited two guest speakers from different industries who will be sharing their research on the costs of different types of “bugs”:

Bug Bounty Program Pricing by Bryce Downing, Quantitative Research Assistant at the RAND Corporation
A Cost-benefit Analysis of Fiscal Stimulus Packages for Mitigating Covid-19 Pandemic by Dr. Wali Mondal, Professor of Economics from National University

General Webinar Slides
Bug Bounty Program Pricing by Bryce Downing
A Cost-benefit Analysis of Fiscal Stimulus Packages for Mitigating Covid-19 Pandemic by Dr. Wali Mondal

Machine Learning in Space!

April 8, 2021

The ICEAA Southern California Chapter and the ICEAA Machine Learning Working Group have teamed up to offer three presentations on Machine Learning in Space:

Acquisition Complexity (ACS) Using Principal Component Analysis (PCA)
Mike Finnegan, The Boeing Company

Proposing a Space-Based Missile Defense Program: Examining Engineering Complexities and Cost Feasibility
Sirina Nabhan and Matthew Ramirez, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

2021 Plans for the Machine Learning Working Group
ML Group Steering Committee: Bryan Anderson, Dan Harper, Adam James, Karen Mourikas, Christian Smart

Attending this webinar counts as 1 hour of training or 0.1 points towards your CCEA recertification.

May 21, 2020 Hypersonic Cost Study

RAND Corporation

Guidance on Hypersonic Cost Questions

April 8 & 15, 2020 Webinars hosted by RAND

The ICEAA Southern California Chapter will be holding a series of webinars hosted by RAND Corporation on April 8 & 15, 2020.

These webinars discuss RAND’s studies and methods for gathering quantitative cost data. Please note that you have to register separately for each webinar. The event is open to all (including non-ICEAA members) and is free of charge.

April 8: Wisdom of the Crowds: Hypersonic Cost Virtual Workshop
Time: April 8, 2020: 11am – 12pm PST.
Speakers: Steve Serk, Lisa Colabella, Éder Sousa, Lieutenant Colonel Paul L. Muller

Abstract: In wicked hard problems, it can be difficult to get quantitative cost data. One method is to collect wisdom from subject matter experts, thus distilling expertise into a quantitative form. In this virtual workshop, we will discuss the wisdom of crowds and how it can be used to help inform cost modelling. In line with the concept of crowdsourcing, we will then draw on the wisdom of ICEAA members to inform hypersonic weapon system cost estimating. More specifically, we will provide a brief introduction to a RAND study on hypersonic weapon system costs and then will ask workshop participants a set of questions about such costs. We will reconvene a week later (via Webinar 2) to share the results.

April 15: How to Use Expert Elicitation for Cost Estimation
Time: April 15, 2020: 11am – 12pm PST.
Speakers: Kelly Klima

Abstract: In Webinar 1, we learned about the Wisdom of Crowds. In Webinar 2, we share a particular method to obtain information from experts called expert elicitation. We will discuss what expert elicitation is and is not, as well as when and how it can be employed for use in cost estimation. We will then share the results of the Webinar 1 virtual workshop activity.

December 11, 2019 SoCal Workshop

Hosted by Galorath Incorporated
100 North Pacific Coast Highway, Building 100, 1st Floor – The Great Room, El Segundo, CA 90245

Download the agenda

Attending this Workshop, whether virtually or in-person, earns 0.7 points towards CCEA recertification.

Keynote Dr. Daniel Galorath, Galorath Inc.

Update on the Masters in Cost Estimating at NPS Karen Richey, Naval Postgraduate School

Self-Organizing Markets and Time Doug Howarth, CEO MEE, Inc.

Cost Engineering in a Market-based Acquisition Process Dr. Darin Hoffman, Director, Systems Integration, Galorath Incorporated

Cost and Market Modeling for Lunar Mining and Drilling Brad Blair, New Space Analytics

Cybersecurity Metrics Arlene Minkiewicz, Chief Scientist, PRICE Systems, LLC

Cost Engineering is an Integral Element of Model Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) and the Digital Enterprise (DE) Dan Cota, Director, Systems Integration, Galorath Incorporated

September 10, 2019 SoCal Workshop

Hosted by The Jet Propulsion Laboratory/Caltech
4800 Oak Grove Drive, Pasadena CA, 91109-8099

Download the agenda

Insight: Mission to Mars Dr. W. Bruce Banerdt, JPL

Business Case Analysis of Lunar Thermal Mining Dr. Robert Shishko, Systems Engineer, JPL

Production System Cost Modeling within a Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) Environment Dan Kennedy, Director of Engineering Services, Galorath Incorporated; and Karen Mourikas, Associate Tech Fellow, Systems Optimization & Affordability, The Boeing Company

Developing Machine Learning Methods for Schedule Summarization Daniel Newkirk, PhD, Tecolote Research, Inc

Responsive Cost Estimating Rick Garcia, Technical Director, MCR Federal, LLC

Estimating Composite Manufacturing Costs Through Top-Down Methods Grady Noll, Cost Research Analyst, PRICE Systems, LLC

March 20, 2019 SoCal Workshop

Hosted by MCR
Cambria Hotel – LAX 199 Continental Blvd, El Segundo CA, 92045

Download the agenda

Case Studies of Machine Learning Techniques Applied to Cost Research Michael Schiavoni, Senior Analyst, Tecolote Research

Language Factors in SEER for Software Karen McRitchie, Vice President Product Development, Galorath, Inc.

A Program Manager’s Guide to Reliable Subcontractor Reporting Pat Malone & Garth Edwards, MCR

Legacy of Parametric Estimating Hank Apgar, Technical Director, MCR

Gamify Your Program: Unite Your Team, Motivate (the Right) Performance Nathan Eskue, Manager, Program Material Control; Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems, Launch Vehicles Division

X-Plane Schedule Impacts Steve Sterk, Cost Estimation & Analysis Officer, NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center

Methodology to Access Cost and Schedule Impact Using System And Technology Readiness Level (SRL/TRL) Nate Sirirojvisuth, Cost Research Analyst, PRICE Systems, LLC

December 12, 2018 SoCal Workshop

Hosted by Leidos
4161 Campus Point Court San Diego, CA 92121
Building E – Room E2660

Download the Agenda

A Robot Brain Might Be the Best Forecasting Tool Possible Nathan Eskue, Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems, Launch Vehicles Division

CER Issues and Solitions Kurt Brunner, Leidos Inc. Senior Principal Parametric Cost Estimator

Electrical Engineering Evolution Dr. Sanrul Ula, University of California – Riverside, Winston Chung Global Energy Center Chair

SEER – Space in the 21st Century Eric Sick, Galorath Inc, Engineering Cost Consultant

Hidden Software Costs – How to Spot Them Jay McGuerty, Leidos Inc, Cyber Security

September 26, 2018 SoCal Workshop

Hosted by Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems
2114 Marine Ave., Redondo Beach, CA. 90278
East of Aviation Blvd on Marine Ave – Presentation Center (APC) after Bldg. E2 Badge Visit

Download the Agenda

Machine Learning & Non-Parametric Methods of Cost AnalysisKaren Mourikas, The Boeing Company, Operations Analysis Affordability & Systems Optimization

Would a Cost Growth Factor Help Alleviate Continuing Cost Overruns? Kurt Brunner, KB Enterprises

Cost Estimate CredibilityHank Apgar, MCR Solutions LLC

Cyber Total Cost of OwnershipRich Mabe, PRICE Systems, LLC

Demand, Recurring Costs, and ProfitabilityDoug Howarth, MEE Inc.

March 7, 2018 SoCal Workshop

Hosted by NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center
2825 East Ave P, Palmdale, CA. 93550
Hangar / Bldg. 703, 2nd Floor, Conference Room 211

Download the Agenda

December 13, 2017  SoCal Workshop

Hosted by Boeing Satellite Systems

Download the agenda

September 20, 2017 SoCal Workshop

Hosted by Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems (SAS)

Download the agenda

3D Printing – Technology, Applications and SelectionDr. Rafiqul Noorani, Loyola Marymount University

Improvement Curves – Beyond the BasicsKurt Brunner, Leidos

Early Cost Risk and Confidence Determination with Minimal Project InformationStu Swalgen & Dr. Zhaofeng Huang, Aerojet Rocketdyne

Machine Learning Approach to Cost AnalysisKaren Mourikas, The Boeing Company

Deployment Cost Estimation for IT/Electronic SystemsGurney Thompson, PRICE Systems LLC

March 27, 2017 Workshop
March 27, 2017 ICEAA SoCal Workshop Agenda

Digitalizing Business ModelsAditya Satsangi & Giovanni Martinez, Nitai Partners

Effectiveness Formula: Key to Improved Software Development ProductivityRandall Jensen, Software Acquisition Consultant

General Degrees of Freedom (GDF) [Best Paper Award for Methods and Models Track at 2015 Conference] Shu-Ping Hu, CCEA-P , Chief Statistician, Tecolote Research Inc.

Price-To-Win in 2017Kent Joris, Manager of Competitive Assessment/Price-to-Win, Northrop Grumman Technology Services

Organizational Cost Estimation (paper) – David Bloom, LEngineering Cost Estimation Subject Matter Expert, Raytheon Co., Space & Airborne Systems (SAS)

Organizational Cost Estimation (presentation) – David Bloom, LEngineering Cost Estimation Subject Matter Expert, Raytheon Co., Space & Airborne Systems (SAS)

Improvement Curves: Beyond the BasicsKurt Brunner, CCEA-P , Leidos Senior Principal Position to Win Strategist / Parametric Cost Estimator / ICEAA SoCal Chapter & Region 7 Director

December 14, 2016 Workshop
December 14, 2016 ICEAA SoCal Workshop Agenda

Keynote Address: Welcome to Fort MacArthurJohn Karns, Space and Missile Systems Center Financial Management & Comptroller Directorate

Estimating Life Cycle Costs at the Skunk Works®Wayne Wright, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company

The Signal and the Noise in Cost EstimatingChristian Smart, Ph.D., Missile Defense Agency

Things Change: Immediate Versus Ultimate Aiming – Doug Howarth, MEE Inc.

NASA’s X-Plane Database and Parametric Cost Model V2.0Anthony Olguin, NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center

Estimation Bias: Why Can’t People Estimate?Dan Galorath, Galorath Incorporated

Training Session: Cost Management – Kent Joris, Northrop Grumman Technology Services

September 7, 2016 ICEAA SoCal/ISBSG Workshop Agenda (PDF)

March 9, 2016 Workshop Agenda (PDF)

December 16, 2015 Workshop Agenda (PDF)

September 9, 2015 Workshop

Download the September 9 Workshop Agenda (PDF)

Workshop Presentations:

Kathy Kha, Galorath Federal, Heuristics for a Space Technology Cost Estimation Model

Dr. Sadrul Ula, Winston Chung Global Energy Center (University of California – Riverside), Technical and Economic Challenges of Integrating Renewable Energy, Electric Vehicle Charging and Battery Energy Storage in a Modern Grid

David Graham, Independent Consultant, Salient Federal Solutions, Two Complementary EVM Cost-Risk Models – Part 2

Lorrie Davis, The Aerospace Corporation, How Long Does It Take to Develop and Launch Government Satellite Systems?

Wayne Wright, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, Estimating Prototype Air Vehicle Development Costs at the Skunk Works® — The Sequel

Joe Bauer, PRICE Systems, LLC, and Pat Malone, MCR LLC, Cost Estimating Challenges in Additive Manufacturing

March 18, 2015 Workshop Presentations (at Fort MacArthur in San Pedro, California).

View Agenda (PDF)

Workshop Presentations:

Christian Smart, Ph.D., Director of Cost Estimating and Analysis, Missile Defense Agency, Bayesian Parametrics: Developing a CER with Limited Data and Even Without Data

Bob Hunt, President, Galorath Federal, Cost Estimation using Story Points

Tom Harwick, Engineering Specialist in Concept and Preliminary Design Cost Models, Northrop Grumman Multi-Discipline Design Analysis & Optimization 2014

Bob Becker, V.P. Business Development, PRICE Systems LLC, Cost Management Implementation at U.S. Army PRO STRI

David Graham, Independent Consultant, Salient Federal Solutions, Two Complementary EVM Cost-Risk Tools

December 17, 2014 Workshop Presentations (at Lockheed Martin in El Segundo)

View Agenda (PDF)

Workshop Presentations:
Edward L. Burnett; LM Senior Fellow – Skunk Works; Lockheed Martin Corporation; The Skunk Works® Bringing the Future Forward

Joe Hamaker, Ph.D.; Senior Cost Analyst, Galorath Inc.; Dr. Strangelove Or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Love Parametrics”

Christopher Rush, Ph.D.; Product Lead Developer, Galorath Inc.; Continuous Fiber Composite Part Cost vs Production Volume By Manufacturing Process and Material”

Randy Jensen, Ph.D.; Software Acquisition Consultant; Effectiveness Formula: Key To Improved Software Development Productivity

Melissa Winter; PRICE Systems, LLC; Data Analysis in Support of Defensible Estimates

September 17, 2014 Workshop Presentations (at Boeing in Huntington Beach)

View Agenda (PDF)

Paul Geery, Director, Boeing C3 (Command Control Communications) Solutions; “Huntington Beach Site Overview” (PDF)

Bill Seeman, Chief, Space Division, Air Force Cost Analysis Agency; “The Five Pillars of Credible Cost Analysis” (PDF)

Omar Mahmoud, Lead Associate, and Blaze Smallwood, Associate, Booz/Allen/Hamilton; “The Agile Project Management Tool – Effectively Managing the Three Dimensions of an Agile Project: Cost, Schedule, and Scope” (PDF)

David Bloom and Danny Polidi, Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems; “Building a Complex Hardware Cost Model for Antennas” (PDF)

Arlene Minkiewicz, Chief Scientist, and Shawn Hayes, Independent Consultant, PRICE Systems LLC; “Space Missions Cost Estimation Model” (PDF)

Kathy Kha, Consultant, Galorath, Inc.; “Bottoms Up Estimating of NASA Instruments Using Technical Parameters“(PDF)

March 19, 2014 Workshop Presentations (at Galorath in El Segundo)

View Agenda (PDF)

Dr. Daniel A. Nussbaum, Chair of the Naval Postgraduate School Energy Academic Group; “The Nexus Between Acquisition and Energy Studies at the Naval Postgraduate School” (PDF)

Dan Galorath, President, Galorath Inc; “Estimates Without Bias” (PDF)

Bob Hunt, Vice President, Services, Galorath Inc.; “The Cost of Software Testing and the ROI” (PDF)

Dr. Randall Jensen, Software Acquisition Consultant; “The Effectiveness Formula: A Quantitative Measure of Organizational Capability” (PDF)

Anthony Shao & Elizabeth Koltz, PhD Candidates at USC (University of Southern California) James Wertz, Technical Advisor; “Performance-Based Cost Modeling – Quantifying the Cost Reduction Potential of Small Satellites” (PDF)