MOBILE, Ala. – Ranell Franklin, Mobile District Natural Resources Program Manager, was chosen by U.S. Black Engineer and Information Technology Magazine to receive a Science Spectrum Trailblazer Award at the 2022 BEYA STEM Conference to be held in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 18, 2022.
The Science Spectrum Trailblazer Award recognizes individuals who are demonstrating outstanding performance in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
Franklin said he was honored when it was announced he would be receiving the award and said his wife, Cherish, played a big part in his recognition.
“I was truly honored and humbled to be one of the recipients for this year’s BEYA STEM award,” Franklin said. “It bears a happiness that is almost indescribable. I’m grateful for the opportunities and challenges afforded to me by my organization, along with the confidence and trust to fulfill the Corps’ mission. I attribute this award to my extraordinary wife and No. 1 fan. Her unwavering support and sacrifice provides me the encouragement and will to always perform at my highest potential.”
Amy Cobb, Chief of Natural Resources Management Section and the person who nominated Franklin for the award, said that Franklin embodies Army Values and highlights what he does to advance the USACE mission.
“I nominated Mr. Franklin because he personally and professionally embodies Army Values,” Cobb said. “He works tirelessly to support the Mobile District in protecting our valuable natural resources while providing diverse outdoor recreation opportunities to the public. He also serves as a mentor, supporting counterparts within his community of practice and exposing youth from underserved communities to career opportunities in the STEM field. I believe the example he sets by his leadership positively impacts mission success and can stand as an inspiration to our future STEM professionals.”
Nelson Sanchez, Mobile District Chief of Operations, said Franklin is a true trailblazer and that he is a role model, not only within USACE, but to future STEM professionals.
“Mr. Franklin is a trailblazer in the sense that he is constantly seeking to improve the organization and himself, while opening the door for others,” Sanchez said. “He has a 20-year Federal Civil Service career and a successful record of providing leadership, project management, and coordination of natural resources management activities for vital recreation projects throughout the Mobile District. Outside of his official responsibilities, he also actively participates in community service and recruitment initiatives which expose youth from underserved communities to the mission of the Corps and STEM professions. He is a role model within the agency and to potential STEM professionals.”
Cobb said that Franklin’s selection for the award recognizes the positive impact he’s had as a trailblazer in the Natural Resources Community of Practice and the Mobile District.
“As a first-generation college graduate, he has overcome many challenges to become successful in his field,” Cobb said. “Over the course of his career he has accepted roles with increasing responsibility, currently providing oversight of Mobile District’s comprehensive recreation program, one of the most visited recreation programs nationwide. This recognition highlights the important work Mr. Franklin does to advance the USACE mission and to help others realize their own potential.”
Franklin, who is a graduate of Southern University and A&M College, an HBCU in Louisiana, said he hopes his award can be an inspiration to others and help them to be passionate in their work.
“God works all the time,” Franklin said. “There is no limit to what a team can accomplish as long as it doesn’t matter who gets the credit is the mantra I follow daily in my profession. Embrace learning opportunities and new challenges. Be passionate about your work because you never know who is watching and the positive influence you can have on someone’s life.”