GSA Talks Training and Opportunities at Small Business Development Fair

GSA opened its doors to nearly 200 small business representatives on March 18 for a development and training fair. The in-person counseling and training is part of GSA’s push to expand opportunities for small businesses in the federal government.

OSBUwomenBizEvent1The fair was kicked off with welcoming remarks from GSA’s Acting Administrator Denise Turner Roth and Associate Administrator of the Office of Small Business Utilization, Jerome Fletcher.

“Small businesses are a valuable partner for the federal government, because you offer unique services, products, and values that we simply can’t get anywhere else,” said Acting Administrator Roth.

In Fiscal Year 2014, GSA spent more than $1.5 billion with small businesses. That represents almost 39 percent of dollars that were eligible for small businesses. That is more than 16 percent above the federal goal.

Small business specialists from GSA’s Public Buildings Service and Federal Acquisition Service also spoke to representatives at the fair about ways to access current contracting opportunities.OSBUwomenBizEvent6

“Today’s event is not merely a check a box, but much rather a collaboration with our inreach team to survey the buyers, determine small business training needs and strategically plan out every part of this program to ensure you have the best chance at performing both pre and post award,” said Jerome Fletcher, Associate Administrator for the Office of Small Business Utilization.

In commemoration of Women’s History Month, a panel discussion, “Weaving the Stories of Women’s Lives: Success, Best Practices and Challenges of Women-Owned Small Businesses”  was convened during the GSA Small Business Development Fair to discuss the achievements and challenges that women-owned small businesses face.

OSBUwomenBizEvent34The panel discussion, hosted by the National Capital Region, and moderated by Regional Administrator Julia E. Hudson, included Teneshia Alston, Sr. Program Manager, Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), Theresa Daytner, CEO of Daytner Construction, Necole Parker, CEO/Founder of the Elocen Group, LLC, and Ann Sullivan, President, Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP).

Keynoting the panel discussion was Ms. Margot Dorfman, the Co- Founder and CEO of the US Women’s Chamber of Commerce.

During the panel discussion, attendees were able to better understand the role of women-owned small businesses in federal contracting, learn best practices, address challenges businesses face, and ascertain the many types of services GSA and its customers agencies require in the National Capital Region. Last fiscal year, GSA spent more than $100 million with Women-Owned Businesses, which exceeded the federal goal.

Learn more about doing business with the government

Check out GSA’s new Doing Business With GSA Video Series – an on-demand/learn when it’s convenient for you training series.

Also, sign-up for monthly Doing Business with GSA Training Webinars, which are free and provide a great resource to learn more about federal procurement policies and procedures