Tuesday, April 7, 2015

The FY14 NASA Small Business Administrator’s Cup Award is Announced

Today Administrator Bolden and I took a trip down to Huntsville, Alabama to present the FY14 NASA Small Business Administrator’s Cup Award to Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC). This award is presented each fiscal year to the NASA center that has the best overall small business program. This is a great achievement for MSFC since it will be the fourth time that MSFC has been awarded the Administrator’s Cup in the seven years it has been presented. 

I want to recognize Marshall’s Center Director Mr. Patrick Scheuermann and the center Small Business Specialist Mr. David Brock for their tireless commitment to the small business program.

As David Brock, the Marshall small business specialist says, “It is indeed an honor for our Center to have been selected to receive such a prestigious award the fourth time in seven years. Our successes start with our management. Their continuing support has created a positive environment in which to promote small business utilization across all organizations at MSFC. Our large business prime contractors have also contributed immensely to our successes as noted by the high mark in total subcontracting to small businesses in fiscal year 2014 of approximately $375 million. Other major contributors to our successes include the Marshall Prime Contractor Supplier Council consisting of representatives from approximately 50 large businesses, and the Marshall Small Business Executive Leadership Team consisting of representatives from approximately 30 small businesses. Both of these organizations provide strategic guidance to assist the Small Business Program staff in the implementation of NASA’s Socioeconomic Programs at MSFC. The key is teamwork.”

This year, I am pleased, but not at all surprised to present this gallant award to the Marshall team. They continue to build upon their excellence and are definitely setting the precedence for all NASA centers. They show exceptional loyalty to our mission and small business. 

Congratulations on this groundbreaking achievement and keep up the hard work in helping NASA achieve its goals!

From the Left: Marshall Space Flight Center Small Business Specialist Mr. David Brock, NASA Administrator Mr. Charles Bolden and Marshall Space Flight Center Director Mr. Patrick Scheuermann

Read the full press release HERE

Friday, March 27, 2015

FY14 Agency-Level Small Business Industry Awards (SBIA)

This year, NASA Administrator, Mr. Charles Bolden presented the FY14 Agency-Level Small Business Industry Awards (SBIA) at the NASA Industry Forum (NIF). Administrator Bolden discussed NASA’s ongoing missions and the importance of small business to the agency. “Small business is the heart and soul of NASA,” he said before explaining the process of how the agency-level winners are selected in three categories.

The FY14 Agency-Level Small Business Prime Contractor of the Year is a.i. solutions.They are the prime contractor on the Expendable Launch Vehicle Integrated Support 2 (ELVIS 2) contract at Kennedy Space Center (KSC). While providing great customer service and submitting all contract deliverables on time they also assist NASA and the Launch Services Program (LSP) in meeting its mission goals.

From the left: Marisa Achee, Director of Business Development, Chip Greek, Director of Launch Services Division, Bob Sperling, President & CEO, Mark Roberts, Executive Vice President, Charles Bolden, NASA Administrator

The FY14 Agency-Level Subcontractor of the Year is Advanced Aerospace Solutions, LLC (AdvAero). AdvAero is a subcontractor to Engility Corporation on the Traffic Aware Strategic Aircrew Requests (TASAR) Analysis and Development contract. TASAR is new to NASA and having Engility partnered with AdvAero takes concept formulation to operational readiness due to their expertise in this industry.

From the left: Marie-Helen Larose, Flight Test Engineer, John Maris, Chief Executive Officer and Mark Haynes, Chief Operating Officer, Charles Bolden, NASA Administrator 

The FY14 Agency-Level Prime Contractor of the Year is Raytheon Company. Raytheon is an exceptional Large Business Prime Contractor at Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC). The integrated partnership with Earth Observing Systems Data and Information System (EOSDIS) and the Evolution and Development (EED) contract supporting Earth Science Data and Information System (ESDIS) helps provide ten small businesses with growth opportunities that equates to a 42% work share for small business.

From the left: Tim Durham, Raytheon Business Development Manager Global Mission Operations, Timothy Ortiz, EOSDIS Evolution and Development Program, Senior Program Manager, Andrew J. Nappi, Director of Federal Programs, Raytheon Mission Support and Modernization, Charles Bolden, NASA Administrator 

Congratulations to all three centers and SBIA winners for their exceptional accomplishments in FY14.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

2015 Spring NASA Industry Forum (NIF)

The NASA Office of Small Business Programs (OSBP) held an engaging and highly successful 3rd NASA Industry Forum (NIF) meeting. The NIF takes place semiannually and provides members the opportunity to gain insight and perspectives about center issues. The NIF is an agency-wide effort to share center-level information that is of concern to both NASA as well as NASA's contractors. The NIF consists of both small and large contractors representing all NASA centers.

We were honored to have many great speakers present at the 2015 Spring NIF meeting. Our first speaker was Ms. Lesa Roe, Deputy Administrator of NASA Office of the Administrator who briefed us on the Technical Capabilities Assessment Team Overview. Our second speaker was Dr. John Mather, who received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2006. His presentation focused on the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) which was a great sendoff for our tour of Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) on the second day of the NIF. The next speaker was Mr. Charles Bolden, NASA Administrator addressed the NIF stating the importance of small business within NASA before he and I presented the FY2014 NASA Small Business Industry Awards (SBIA).

As the day progressed, Mr. Kenneth Dodds, Director, Office of Policy, Planning & Liaison for the Small Business Administration (SBA) addressed us with a suburb SBA update to the NIF members. Our closing speaker was Ms. Krista Paquin, Deputy Associate Administrator for Mission Support presenting a Business Services Assessment Briefing that we appreciated. I want to thank all of our presenters for attending the NIF meeting.

Dr. John Mather presenting on the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST)

On the second day of the NIF we took a bus to tour GSFC. The tour exceeded my expectations and I continue to be fascinated by how NASA limitlessly acts as the catalyst for aeronautics and deep space exploration. I look forward to another successful NIF coming in the fall of 2015 and I will continue to put forth effort to make the NIF as beneficial for its members as possible.

A look into the Clean Room of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) at
Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) tour

The spring 2015 NASA Industry Forum (NIF) members after the Goddard Tour

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Small Business Advocate Awards (SBAA)

7 years ago the NASA Small Business Advocate Awards (SBAA) were created to recognize outstanding efforts and innovative practices by NASA civil servants in support of the NASA Small Business Program.The awards categories are Small Business Specialist of the Year, Procurement Person (or Team) of the Year, Technical Person (or Team) of the Year and Program Person (or Team) of the Year.

For FY14 I am pleased to have selected winners for their extraordinary and unwavering work in support of the NASA Small Business Program.

  • 2014 Small Business Specialist of the Year: Mr. Robert E. Watts, SSC
  • 2014 Procurement Person of the Year: Mr. Craig W. Bowers, HQ
  •      2014 Technical Person of the Year: Mr. Jeffery A. Chambers, GRC
  • 2014 Program Team of the Year: Repair Aircraft Hanger Fire Protection Systems Team, AFRC, the team members are Ms. Andrea C. Basham, Mr. Brain G. Bowman and Mr. Justin D. Reid

I want to take the time to congratulate each and every one of these awardees and look forward to having them and their peers continued support of the NASA Small Business Program.

For more information on past awardees and selection criteria please visit the link to our website: SBAA

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Stennis Space Center Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Industry Day

On February 3, 2015, NASA’s Office of Small Business Programs concluded another successful Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business Industry Day event hosted by the Stennis Space Center. 

      A look at SSC during the SDVOSB Industry Day
Presenting NASA FY14 Small Business Prime Metrics
From the left: Robert S. Harris, SSC Procurement Officer receiving the Small Business Champion recognition, Robert E. Watts, SSC Small Business Specialist, receiving FY14 SBS of the Year and Stennis Space Center Director Dr. Richard Gilbrech

Networking with Gwen Johnson, Socioeconomic Business Programs Manager Parsons

With over 300 attendees at the INFINITY Space Center, the Industry Day offered numerous opportunities for SDVOSB owners and representatives to network with government procurement decision makers, other large and small businesses and current NASA prime contractors. Despite the event title, the attendees included more than two hundred representatives from not only Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Businesses, but also Veteran-Owned Small Businesses, Women-Owned Small Businesses, and HUBZone Businesses.

I look forward to the future where the relationships that were made at this event lead to contracts. We look forward to seeing you at our HUBZone Industry Day at Johnson Space Center on August 11, 2015.

Friday, January 30, 2015

BusinessUSA Executive Committee Meeting

Yesterday I was proud to host the BusinessUSA Executive Committee Meeting in our Executive Conference room. I will start with a little background information, in 2011 the President issued a challenge to government agencies to think outside the box when coming to organizational boundaries and this is how BusinessUSA came to be.

It’s always great to hear about how successful the online platform business.usa.gov has become. The platform acts as a one-stop shop allowing the user to seek information with ease that is pertinent to their business. As an emerging entrepreneur, finding out the right information can be difficult and frustrating. BusinessUSA included a helpful portal in their site that allows for a more personal and customized experience with tools such as online training and chat forums.

 Listed from the left: Amin Mehr, Manager of Technology & Innovation, Michele Bartram, Manager of Partnerships & Customer Assurance, Efrain Gonzalez: Chief Financial Officer & Administrative Officer, Dennis Alvord, Executive Director, Holly Schick, Deputy Executive Director, Dexter Fredericks, Product Manager

An engaging topic that came up was the presentation on the Digital Strategies Playbook Audit of BusinessUSA. The White House launched the U.S. Digital Services Playbook on August 11, 2014. The playbook consists of 13 topics that were derived from successful best practices from the private sector and the government. Consumers spend money on digital channels to make lives easier. If every business starts to follow these 13 “plays” then digital channels will become more rounded and intuitive. BusinessUSA adapted this methodology to improve on specific areas such as making current progress to integrate automatic testing tools to improve their website and new mobile application.

For more information on this methodology please visit the site.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Bally Ribbon Mills Tour

I am always proud of the contribution small businesses make to NASA’s Mission. Today NASA’s Administrator, Mr. Charlie Bolden, the Associate Administrator for the Space Technology Mission Directorate, Dr. Michael Gazarik and I toured Bally Ribbon Mills (BRM) in Bally, Pennsylvania to gain insight on the production of the advanced Woven Thermal Protection System (Woven TPS). NASA envisions the great potential for BRM’s advanced woven thermal protection systems on the Exploration Mission-1 (EM-1), Orion spacecraft mission, currently scheduled for 2018.

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, BRM President Ray Harries and I.

BRM, a successful Small Business Innovation Research Phase III company has been a valuable partner to the agency and is using unique thermal protective materials to help develop a safe way for astronauts to travel into deep space and ultimately Mars. 

Ms. Pamela Ream, a BRM Harness Maker and Filler demonstrating the hand weaving process.

Mr. Ray Harries, President of BRM, led the tour and what I found particularly fascinating was seeing the advance Woven TPS process and the 3-D Multifunctional Ablative TPS for Orion. It was inspiring to see innovative technology firsthand that stem from game-changing small businesses. NASA is proud to be associated with these high-tech small businesses that are essential for us to complete our various missions.