DESE Research, Inc.
Q: What would you like people to know about DESE Research?
DESE Research is one of Huntsville’s oldest family owned and family managed small businesses in the defense and aerospace markets.
DESE was founded by my Father, Dr. Wally Kirkpatrick. He founded the company after a career in missile defense hit-to-kill technology development. One of his principal objectives in founding DESE was to have a great place to work. We focus on creating a happy place for people to pursue their career goals.
Q: It is DESE’s 40th anniversary. Tell us about what you’ve done to mark this milestone.
We gave each co-worker 40 “DESE Bucks” to spend at the company gift shop. DESE pays half of the cost of all items in the gift shop, so that is equal to $80 in DESE swag and merch. Everyone is sporting their new DESE apparel and gear around the office and the community. We created a contest for co-workers to send in photos of themselves having fun out in the community sporting their DESE swag. Each photo was an entry into a drawing for 100,000 airline travel points. We got some great photos! In addition, we have enjoyed multiple barbeques at the [Huntsville] Botanical Garden, parties, and events celebrating our anniversary.
Q: What are some of your company’s upcoming goals?
Our goals are to delight our customers and become indispensable technical contributors to our customers’ success. We want to retain everyone on our team by being the very best option of where they can choose to work. We want to recruit the best and brightest in the industry by incentivizing our co-workers to recruit their friends and family to join DESE. I tell the team, recruit your family, “DESE is no stranger to nepotism!” Our goal is to continue to thrive and meet our goal to be a successful multi-generational family-owned and managed business.
Q: What would you say to other companies considering an investment in HREGI?
The Chamber is #1 in the Nation in growing the business community and creating an environment where all businesses can thrive. The Chamber is a key contributor to Huntsville being named the #1 place in the Nation to work and live. Wow, that makes it easy to invest at a higher level! Decades of hard and smart work by the Chamber staff and volunteers, and investment by the members, has helped make Huntsville a great success for all of us!
This article appears in the December 2022 issue of Initiatives magazine, a publication of the Huntsville/Madison County Chamber.