Conference Agenda

APRIL 3, 2024 – Three Rivers Convention Center

7:30 AM – 8:00 AMBus Tour Badging and Loading
(pre-registration required)
8:00 AM – 11:30 AM
Bus Tour of the Hanford Site – Foyer
(pre-registration required)
11:00 AM – 4:30 PM
Early Booth Set Up – Great Hall B/D
4:30 PM – 6:30 PM
Welcome Networking Reception – Foyer (symposium registration required)

APRIL 4, 2024 – Three Rivers Convention Center

7:00 AM – 8:30 AMBooth SetupGreat Hall B/D
7:00 AM – 11:30 AMRegistrationFoyer
7:30 AM – 09:30 AM
Continental Breakfast and Networking
8:30 AM – 9:30 AM
Breakout Session 1
Meeting Room ABC
How to Write a Winning Proposal
John Robinson, Division Director of Requirements & Records Management at PNNL
9:30 AM – 9:45 AMBreak
9:45 AM – 10:45 AM
Breakout Session 2Meeting Room ABC
DFARS Accounting System Compliance
Jeff Annessa, Senior Manager, Cherry Bekaert Advisory LLC
Jacquelin LaClair, Manager, Cherry Bekaert Advisory LLC
10:45 AM – 11:00 AMBreak
11:00 AM – 12:00 PMBreakout Session 3Meeting Room ABC
DOE Strategic Sourcing Agreements
Nicole Colley, Operation Strategy Manager and ICPT Vice Chair, SLAC National Laboratory
John O’Connell, Principal Customer Programs Leader, Supply Chain Management Center
12:00 PM – 12:15 PMBreak and get seated for lunch programGreat Hall A/C
12:15 PM – 1:30 PMLuncheon and Keynote SpeakerGreat Hall A/C
KEEPING IT FRESH: How to keep your business from becoming stale

Speakers: Isaac Butts & Paul Casey

1:30 PM – 4:30 PM EXHIBIT HALL OPENGreat Hall B/D
1:45 PM – 2:15 PMBreakout Session 4Meeting Room ABC
ETEBA: Connecting Businesses with Opportunities Across the United States
Elizabeth Harm, Director at ETEBA
2:15 PM – 2:30 PMBreak
2:30 PM – 3:00 PMBreakout Session 5Meeting Room ABC
State and Federal Certification Updates
Monisha Ramey, Certification Analyst at OMWBE
Maria Alleman, Advisor at APEX Accelerator
3:00 PM – 3:15 PMBreak
3:15 PM – 3:45 PMBreakout Session 6Meeting Room ABC
SBA Mentor Protégé and Joint Ventures
Fernando Cervantes, Lead Business Opportunity Specialist at the SBA

Meet this Year’s Presenters

John Robinson

Division Director of Requirements & Records Management at PNNL

John Robinson is the Division Director of Requirements & Records Management at PNNL. His professional experience includes directing and managing organizations of highly skilled professionals in the areas of acquisition planning, proposal preparation and management, and contract management. He is known for implementing a number of process improvements, electronic records management transitions, and strategic sourcing initiatives. One of his many prior responsibilities included performing advanced acquisition planning to ensure project delivery by migrating baseline project plans and execution schedules into a definitive streamlined process that emphasized best commercial practices while maintaining safety and quality performance.

John has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, and a Master in Business Administration from Nova Southeastern University, He holds current certifications with the Project Management Institute as a Project Management Professional (PMP) and the National Contract Management Association as a Certified Professional Contract Manager (CPCM), a Certified Commercial Contracts Manager (CCCM), and a Certified Federal Contract Manager (CFCM).

Jeff Annessa

Jeff Annessa

Senior Manager, Cherry Bekaert Advisory LLC

As a Senior Manager with Cherry Bekaert’s Government Contractor Industry group, Jeff brings a diverse audit background with compliance knowledge of small, mid-sized and large prime government contractors.
He has vast knowledge from the Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA) performing and managing Incurred Cost Audits, Forward Pricing Cost Proposals, Forward Pricing Rate Proposals (FPRP), Business Systems Audits, Cost Accounting Standards (CAS) compliance, Termination Settlement Proposal Audits, Vouchers, and Advisory Services. Jeff has cultivated an in-depth understanding of the requirements in the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR), Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS), and CAS through his DCAA experiences.

Prior to joining Cherry Bekaert, Jeff was with the DCAA for 13 years and held various positions such as Quality Manager, Supervisory Auditor, Field Audit Office Manager, and Senior Financial Liaison Advisor. Most recently Jeff served as the main DCAA focal point to resolve highly complex forward pricing technical issues related to audit and procurement-related initiatives for 13 major Department of Defense (DoD) Buying Commands (Army, Navy, DLA, etc.) across the country.

Jacquelin LaClair

Jacquelin LaClair

Manager, Cherry Bekaert Advisory LLC Advisory

As a Manager within the Risk & Accounting Advisory Services (RAAS) practice of Cherry Bekaert, Jacquelin provides consulting services with a variety of businesses interested in entering and maintaining their presence within the Government Contracting sector. She assists clients with audit readiness for business systems, incurred cost submissions and providing guidance on the implementation of FAR and agency- specific regulations.

Jacquelin spent the first ten years of her accounting career with the Department of Defense, working with two different agencies centered in Defense Contract. Through this experience, she is able to address client specific needs throughout the contract life cycle.

Nicole Colley

Nicole Colley

Operation Strategy Manager and ICPT Vice Chair, SLAC National Laboratory

Nicole is the Operations Strategy Manager for the Supply Chain Management department with SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory located in Menlo Park, CA. Nicole oversees the Small Business and Supplier Diversity Program, Operational functions of Supplier Administration and ERP Purchase Order Closeout, Department Training, and Department Web Communications, for the past 2.5 years. In October 2021, Nicole was appointed ICPT Vice Chair and is responsible for reporting quarterly ICPT spend and savings under the ICPT portfolio on behalf of the 17 participating labs. Prior to SLAC, Nicole held various positions in procurement / supply chain management in the oil and gas and financial services industry including leadership positions in vendor and contract management and category management.

John O’Connell

John O’Connell

Principal Customer Programs Leader, SCMC

John O’Connell serves as the Principal Customer Programs Leader at the Supply Chain Management Center. In this role, John ensures federal customers’ and the U.S. Department of Energy prime contractor clients’ satisfaction as the SCMC works to simplify the buying process. He is the business and relationship liaison between the SCMC and these groups, fielding inquiries as well as problem solving. John joined the SCMC in 2016 and has 30 years’ experience in communications and public affairs.

Elizabeth Harm

Elizabeth Harm

Executive Director, ETEBA

Elizabeth Harm was named the Executive Director of ETEBA (Energy, Technology, Environmental Business Association) in March 2022. In this capacity, she directs the overall management and direction of this national association committed to connecting businesses with growth opportunities. It is under the direction of Harm and a strong board of directors that ETEBA, a non-profit trade association representing more than 200 companies nationwide, works to promote the success of members by fostering market understanding, identifying business opportunities, and advocating for common interests.

Prior to joining ETEBA, Harm managed the Protocol and Community Outreach Program at the Savannah River National Laboratory. Before joining the Lab, Harm worked for Savannah River Nuclear Solutions in the government and community outreach programs.

Harm is originally from Edgefield, South Carolina and attended the University of South Carolina where she earned a degree in Political Science and Communications. She later attended the Protocol School of Washington. Today, Harm lives just outside of Oak Ridge, Tennessee with her husband, Ben, and their two teenagers, Allie and Wells.

Monisha Ramey

Monisha Ramey

Certification Analyst at OMWBE

Monisha Ramey is a seasoned professional with a wealth of experience in investigation, social work, and program management, with a notable tenure at the Washington State Office of Minority and Women’s Business Enterprises (OMWBE). With a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice from the University of Arkansas-Little Rock and ongoing graduate studies in Social Work at Walden University, she possesses a solid foundation of theoretical knowledge complemented by hands-on expertise.

At the Washington State OMWBE, Monisha Ramey serves as a Certification Analyst, playing a pivotal role in processing highly complex certification applications and ensuring compliance with federal and state laws. She has led the establishment and maintenance of certification rules, processes, and standards, contributing to the effective implementation of certification strategies aligned with industry best practices.

Monisha Ramey’s extensive experience also includes roles in investigation and program management, where she excelled in conducting thorough investigations, coordinating statewide initiatives, and developing effective solutions to complex challenges. She has a proven track record of achieving results and implementing innovative strategies to drive positive change.

Beyond her professional endeavors, Monisha Ramey is deeply committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion, as evidenced by her involvement in various community initiatives and organizations. She brings to the table a unique blend of skills, including leadership, teamwork, analytical thinking, and adaptability, which she leverages to drive positive change and make a meaningful impact in her field. She is a current small business owner, and she has served her country as a member of the Armed Forces in the United States Army.

With a passion for continuous learning and personal development, Monisha Ramey is dedicated to pursuing excellence in her chosen field and looks forward to contributing her expertise and insights to future endeavors.

Fernando Cervantes

Fernando Cervantes

Lead Business Opportunity Specialist, SBA

Mr. Fernando Cervantes is Lead Business Opportunity Specialist for the Seattle District Office.

Mr. Cervantes joined the SBA in July 2022. Serving as a Business Opportunity Specialist at the Spokane Branch Office. He recently was promoted to Lead Business Opportunity Specialist in October 2023. Prior to the SBA he was a Contracting Officer for the U.S. Air Force for eleven years and retired from active duty in October 2022.