Product Showcase

The big day is here! On a rainy morning at the stunning Booz Allen Hamilton Innovation Center in downtown DC, our companies have gathered to present to government, industry and media as well as hear from keynote speaker John Skudlarek of the Federal Communications Commission. 

BAH's Kurt Scherer kicks us off. 

BAH's Kurt Scherer kicks us off. 

Dcode42 Founder Meagan Metzger speaks about the Dcode42 mission and what's happening right now at the intersection of government and entrepreneurial technology. 

Dcode42 Founder Meagan Metzger speaks about the Dcode42 mission and what's happening right now at the intersection of government and entrepreneurial technology. 

Techstars' Rachelle Oribio on Techstars in DC and the amazing companies and founders here today. 

Techstars' Rachelle Oribio on Techstars in DC and the amazing companies and founders here today. 

FCC Deputy CIO John Skudlarek gives a thought-provoking (and entertaining!) talk on innovation in the FCC and beyond. 

FCC Deputy CIO John Skudlarek gives a thought-provoking (and entertaining!) talk on innovation in the FCC and beyond. 

DroneSeed's Grant Canary

DroneSeed's Grant Canary

New Knowledge's Vidya Spandana

New Knowledge's Vidya Spandana

SPIDR Tech's Rahul Sidhu

SPIDR Tech's Rahul Sidhu

Distil Networks' Dominick Fuccillo

Distil Networks' Dominick Fuccillo

MARK Labs' Kevin Barrow

MARK Labs' Kevin Barrow

PROXXI's Campbell Macdonald

PROXXI's Campbell Macdonald

Kepler Communications' Jeff Osborne

Kepler Communications' Jeff Osborne

NexLP's Zak Rudzki

NexLP's Zak Rudzki

Meagan, Rachelle and our Founders! 

Meagan, Rachelle and our Founders! 

Networking after the presentations

Networking after the presentations

Rahul and Meagan

Rahul and Meagan

Getting ready for the Showcase

Protecting intellectual property is a major concern of small businesses when they work with both the government and large industry partners. Jon Baker from Crowell and Moring came to speak about what to expect when working with the government and industry partners in terms of IP protection and rights as well as how companies can best protect themselves and their IP. 

Wednesday afternoon we've been concentrating on preparations for the Showcase, where our companies will give their pitches to an audience of government and industry. 

Rahul from SPIDR Tech preps for the Showcase with Meagan and Rachelle. 

Rahul from SPIDR Tech preps for the Showcase with Meagan and Rachelle. 

Getting a feel for different agencies

At this point, our companies have met with fifteen government agencies and are beginning to get a feel for how different one part of the government can be from another. Putting that in perspective this morning was a briefing from Dr. Thomas Killion, from the Office of Naval Research, who explained not only some of the work that ONR does but also touched on innovation in different branches of the military. 

Afterwards, Matt Weinberg of SBA joined us to talk about what SBA does, some of the investments they make, and how companies like ours can work with and get help from SBA. 

Week 2 off to a great start

A full schedule today! First we heard from Ari Schuler, of Customs and Border Protection discussed some of CBP's technology challenges, strategic goals, and outreach to the entrepreneurial community. 

Following the CBP presentation, FCC's John Skudlarek joined us for a candid discussion on what innovation really means in the government. He shared some of the exciting ways the FCC is working for change and trying to cultivate an attitude of innovation. 

In the afternoon, the program hosted an industry panel with representatives from GDIT, Booz Allen Hamilton, and CSRA for a dialogue around how small businesses can work with large primes and what some of the 'do's and 'don't's are. 

End of week wrap-up.

Our long, busy week is wrapping up! Kicking off the morning is Dr. Doug Maughan of Department of Homeland Security. Dr. Maughan discussed some of the current efforts at DHS's Science and Technology directorate, including cybersecurity and international cooperation on cybersecurity and other tech issues. 

Following Dr. Maughan's briefing, John Prairie and Nicole Owren-Wiest of Wiley Rein joined us to teach a session on government contracts pricing. They covered crucial information like contract types, legal guidelines for pricing and disclosure, and other important considerations.

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Mentorship filled the afternoon schedule, including Kelly O'Connor from US Digital Service and Christine Jung of BlueCompass, followed by a quick wrap up and wishes for a great weekend!

Thursday briefings and mentorship

Our morning was dedicated to some of the more technical aspects of working with the government as our guests from Amazon Web Services joined us. Keith Brooks, Director of Business Development for AWS, spoke to GovCloud and some of the most recent compliance trends in the government space.

Keith Brooks, AWS

Keith Brooks, AWS

This afternoon we heard from Brenna Krieger of the Department of Energy, speaking about the Technology to Market program, and several of the companies were able to get some time to sit with her individually. 

Brenna Krieger, Energy, and Kevin Barrow, MARK Labs. 

Brenna Krieger, Energy, and Kevin Barrow, MARK Labs. 

Following Brenna was Corey Harrison, co-founder of Defense Digital Services, who spoke proudly of his "SWAT team of nerds" and some of the incredible challenges they're taking on at the Department of Defense. 

Corey Harrison, in official Defense Digital hoodie. 

Corey Harrison, in official Defense Digital hoodie. 

Afternoon mentoring sessions

Wednesday afternoon was filled with mentoring sessions from visiting experts like Mark Bathrick, OAS director of the Department of the Interior and Stephen Rodriguez of One Defense. Our guests offered one-on-one advice on a wide range of topics, all aimed at helping the companies navigate this complicated market. 

Stephen Rodriguez of One Defense talks with Kevin Barrow of MARK Labs. 

Stephen Rodriguez of One Defense talks with Kevin Barrow of MARK Labs. 

Getting the word out

Marketing and public relations is this morning's focus. Our first guests were a team from Merritt Group, speaking about how to market to the government and how it can be different (sometimes very different!) from the commercial sector. 

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To complement our marketing discussion, Lisa from Speakerbox joined us to discuss public relations and brand building in the government ecosystem, emphasizing the importance of thought leadership as opposed to product-centered messaging.