Jim Mathews Award for Intelligence Excellence

The Jim Mathews Award, started in 2012 by Aurora WDC and to celebrate the 9th award year in 2022, was created to remember and acknowledge the lasting professional contributions to the field of Competitive Intelligence (CI) made by Mr. James (Jim) Mathews, who passed away in October 2011.

About the Jim Mathews Award

Aurora WDC announced its intent of this award in the summer of 2011, when Jim was still in the industry, with the first awards presented in May 2012 in celebration of Jim’s memory and acknowledgment of his lasting professional contributions to the field of Competitive Intelligence (CI). Sadly, he passed away in October 2011 before the first awards could be bestowed; however, when he heard of Aurora’s intent a few months before his passing, he was honored to know Aurora wanted to create a lasting legacy surrounding his industry contributions.

Having known Jim for nearly a decade, we viewed him as exemplifying the “gold standard” regarding professionalism in the applied intelligence field. More so, he always loved meeting with and speaking to students about entering and making a career out of the intelligence profession, and what a noble pursuit it was.

Thank you for considering this opportunity to advance your Intelligence career and education, and do so in memory and honor of a great and highly-respected professional.

Jim Mathews Award and Fellowship

The submission deadline for this year’s Jim Mathews Award has passed. Look for the announcement of this year’s recipient(s) later in November!

2022 Jim Mathews Award Winner

Sebastian Herrera

This year’s Jim Mathews Award medalist is Sebastian Herrera. Read a little more about him below!

He has an impressive resume including:

  • University of Georgia, 4th Year
  • Major: Management Information Systems
  • Connect with Sebastian on LinkedIn

In his own words…

As I reflect on the past several months as well as look to my immediate future, winning the Jim Matthews Award for Intelligence is impactful to me for three reasons.

Firstly, it removes quite a lot of weight from my shoulders. This summer, I am undertaking an internship in New York City and the financial burden of paying for housing was causing me immense stress. My original plan was to pick up a second job for Spring 2023 and disengage from some of the fellowships and committees I served on, but through the generosity of Aurora WDC and their Jim Matthews Award for Intelligence, I no longer feel that pressure. There is large anxiety lifted off my chest. This award will allow me to spend next semester worried more about my classes, professional development, and being a well-rounded student.

Secondly, this award has validated my efforts this semester. I am a chronic plate-filler. Between a fall internship, an on-campus job, a certificate in workplace diversity, a full class schedule, two fellowships, and several other extracurriculars, I have worked harder this semester then I thought possible. As I enter final-project, and exam season at the Terry College of Business, receiving this award is a well-timed reminder that no matter how tired, over-worked, or anxious I feel I am working towards a greater goal. As I continue to push myself, there are people out there that will not only acknowledge those efforts but support me as I undertake them.

Finally, receiving this honor is a way to show those who have supported me through my time in college that their investment was not in vain. Whether it’s the mentors who have fielded dozens of questions from me throughout the semester, the professors who allowed me to miss classes to attend the CI Fellows Summit and other Professional development opportunities, or my family who have been understanding as I have become less available in order pursue a better future, all these people have poured into me and continued to trust and believe in me. This award hopefully serves as proof that their investment was not wasted.

Even with this scholarship my hunger persists, my next journey is to prove to Aurora WDC and the Competitive Intelligence Fellows that this investment in my future is not a waste.

Past Award Winners

2012 JMA Winners


Bridget Finn (Mercyhurst U.) & Shawn Ruminski (Mercyhurst U.)

2013 JMA Winners


Nita Heeg (Algonquin C., Ottawa) & Mary Kate Daley (Mercyhurst U.)

2014 JMA Winners


Sarah Stokes (Mercyhurst U) & Selina Zhang (Algonquin C., Ottawa)

2015 JMA Winners


Lisel Douglas (Algonquin C., Ottawa) & Monica Perez (Mercyhurst U.)

2016 JMA Winners


Nhi Tran (Mercyhurst U.) & Joshua Bailey (James Madison U.)

2017 JMA Winners


Thomas Hamby (Mercyhurst U.) & Connor Hamel (James Madison U.)

2017 JMA Winners


Micah Uveges (Georgetown University) & Holly Schnader (James Madison University)

2017 JMA Winners


Marina Boyle (James Madison University)

Biographical Sketch of James E. Mathews

James E. (Jim) Mathews spent more than 30 years in the Defense Industry, and the last 14 in Competitive Intelligence (CI) and Price-to-Win (PTW). His whole career was centered on winning new business and he was the Lead CI Professional and/or PTW leader/co-leader on some of the largest winning proposals his company had engaged in in his last years of practice. His resume wins included the realignment of NORAD and Cheyenne Mountain (ISC2), the Joint Strike Fighter (The F-35), Coast Guard Deepwater (Recapitalization of all Coast Guard’s assets), High Altitude Airship, the Littoral Combat Ship (fast fighting ship for the shallow waters of the littorals), War Fighter Focus (Live, Virtual, and Constructive Training for the Army for the next 10 Years), and a multitude of Service Jobs and Classified Projects. Jim was medically retired from the US Air Force where, at one time, he was an Airborne Voice Controller for the Apollo program for NASA.

Jim received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration from the University of Florida and a Master of Science Degree in Contract and Acquisition Management from the Florida Institute of Technology. Following a successful career at Lockheed Martin, he retired early in 2003, and joined Raytheon for just over three years as Director of Deal-To-Win, followed by Northrop Grumman TASC for 5 years as Director of CI/ Position-To-Win before joining Booz Allen Hamilton in December 2010 as a Principal on their GO Team.

He and his wife Bonnie resided in the McLean, Virginia area, and were die-hard Florida Gators fans. Jim had a passion for seeing young people succeed in their careers, and was always a willing mentor to professionals of any age who had a desire to learn.