Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR) joined members of government and industry to support small business opportunities at the National Defense Industrial Association 30th Annual Gold Coast Small Business Procurement Event, Aug. 7-8 at the San Diego Convention Center.
The event educated attendees through insightful panels, workshops and networking events, including the opportunity to meet key contracting personnel at one-on-one matchmaking sessions.
Emily Harman, director, Department of Navy (DON) Office of Small Business Programs (OSBP) kicked off the event with a discussion about the DON’s OSBP's strategic priorities.
Harman echoed sentiments referred to in a memo titled “Small Business Utilization for Strategic Advantage” released Aug. 6 by Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition, James Geurts.
Harman stressed the importance of including small businesses as key members of our Department of the Navy team, as they are an incredible source for innovation, adaptability, pivot speed, and resilience. Additionally, she encouraged acquisition commands and program executive offices to place a priority on improving utilization of small businesses in accomplishing the Department of the Navy’s mission.
Following Harman, Mark McLain, associate director for SPAWAR OSBP, led a panel focused on the Navy’s acquisition lifecycle from requirements to contract.
“Working with small businesses increases competition, reduces costs and provides quality products, services and solutions that support our Sailors and Marines,” said McLain “It is to our benefit and the benefit of small business to guide and assist small businesses through the Navy’s acquisition lifecycle and make doing business with government as simple and efficient as possible.”
During the event, Gold Coast participants seized the opportunity to get up close and personal with contracting experts through one-on-one matchmaking sessions.
“As a small business, one of the main advantages of this event is we get to work alongside big organizations like SPAWAR,” said Josh Doiron, a business analyst for Solute. “More specifically, the match making portion allows us the opportunity to connect with government leaders and hear directly from subject matter experts about what they do, what they are looking for, and how our company can fill the gaps.”
Additionally, on the exhibit floor, participants visited more than 200 government agencies and industry organizations, including the 10 Navy commands.
“Our goal is to provide new technologies to the warfighter and this event allows us to connect with government leads to find the best place to plug that technology in,” said David Bennett, president of Applied Science and Technologies Inc.
Moving forward, SPAWAR will continue to promote business with small business, as small business plays a vital role within the defense industrial base to support our national defense strategy and the warfighters that keep our nation secure.
SPAWAR identifies, develops, delivers and sustains information warfighting capabilities supporting naval, joint, coalition and other national missions. SPAWAR consists of more than 10,000 active duty military and civil service professionals located around the world and close to the fleet to keep SPAWAR at the forefront of research, engineering and acquisition to provide and sustain information warfare capabilities to the fleet.
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