Small Business and Entrepreneur Committee Event

December 17, 2015

Nick Wakeman
Washington Technology

Washington Technology (WT) Editor Nick Wakeman was named to his post in June 2005 after serving as senior editor for four years. He joined WT as a staff writer in 1996. At WT, Wakeman has written about the systems integrators, procurement trends and major contracts. He has a daily blog, the Business Beat, where he offers commentary and news about what's going on in the government market. He also heads the publication's annual Top 100 project, which ranks the largest IT and systems integrators in federal market.

Before joining WT, Wakeman wrote a newsletter covering the Food and Drug Administration. He also has written for publications on consumer product safety regulations and physical therapy. He began his career in journalism covering police and courts for the Daily News-Record in Harrisonburg, Va. Wakeman is a graduate of Bridgewater College and earned a master's degree in journalism from the American University. He lives in Alexandria, Va., with his wife, Beth, and two sons.

Satya Akula
President and CEO
Amyx Inc.

Satya Akula is the current president and CEO of Amyx Inc., an ISO 27001 and ISO 9001 certified, and CMMI-DEV Level 3 appraised company. Amyx has been a recognized for several achievements including GovCon Contractor of the Year Finalists in 2012, 2014, and 2015 as well as SECAF Government Contractor of the Year Finalist in 2015. Akula was named as Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist for the Washington, D.C. area in 2002; ASEs NCC Entrepreneur of the Year Awardee in 2003; and GovCon Executive of the Year Finalist in 2014.

Akula was a co-founder and former CEO of AC Technologies Inc. (ACT), founded in 1993 as an information technologies company, with headquarters in Fairfax, Va. and offices across United States. Akula set the company's strategy, acquired major customers, and initiated quality practices to grow ACT to be a premier IT company in the Washington, D.C. area. As a result of his leadership, ACT earned various awards from Inc. Magazine's 500, Deloitte & Touche's Fast 500, and Virginia Technology's Fast 50 for 6 years in a row. Additionally, ACT was listed as one of the top 100 privately-held companies owned by Asian-Indian Americans. In 2004, ACT had more than $60 million in revenue run rate and 400 employees before Akula sold the company to PEC Solutions, a NASDAQ traded company.

Akula also was the president of the ISS Sector, Nortel Government Solution, a subsidiary of Nortel Networks of Canada from 2004 until June 2007. His leadership led his sector to achieve the prestigious SEI/CMMI Level 5. In 2010 and 2011, Akula was appointed president of TiE-DC, Washington's largest organization of entrepreneurs, dedicated to fostering entrepreneurship and innovation throughout the Mid-Atlantic region.

Akula has been an active early-stage investor, having invested in more than 20 companies. He currently mentors 15 portfolio companies' young leadership. He is also personally connected to the D.C. metro community through his support of several organizations, including: Wounded Warrior Project, American Lung Association, Courtney's House, Diabetes Action Plan, and Race for Hope. Akula received his B.S. in chemical engineering degree from Osmania University in Hyderabad, India. Later, he received his M.S. degrees in engineering and management at the University of Maryland.

Mark Johnson
Founder & CEO

Mark Johnson founded PRISM in 1994. He leads PRISM as a premier IT services provider with his extensive experience cultivating client relationships, building internal sales and recruiting teams and fostering company growth. Recently selected as one of the 100 SmartCEOs in the Washington, D.C. area, Johnson is passionate about expanding PRISM's role in the IT professional services industry. He meets with industry CEOs on a routine basis to discuss current market trends and executive goals with the intent of promoting company business and maintaining effective management methods. Johnson's membership in NVTC's Executive Circle allows him to check the pulse on technology industry developments. Under Johnson's direction, PRISM has been recognized by Inc. Magazine as one of the fastest growing businesses in America and by Washington Business Journal as one of the top 25 IT professional services firms. Johnson completed his bachelor's degree at the University of Maryland and returned to his alma mater to mentor MBA candidates studying at the Robert H. Smith School of Business.

J. Kendall Lott
CEO and President
M Powered Strategies Inc.

With more than 20 years of experience in the federal government and as a consultant, Kendall Lott is the CEO and president of M Powered Strategies Inc., a change management consulting firm in Washington, D.C. that supports organizations within the U.S. government. His professional background includes government service at the Departments of Agriculture and Justice, as well as service as a Peace Corps volunteer.

A certified project management professional, he has served as a volunteer with Washington, D.C. Chapter of the Project Management Institute (PMIWDC) for more than a decade, as an active member of the board for 8 years. His volunteer roles include executive management as he has been the COO and CEO of PMIWDC, and the executive director of the Project Management Day of Service.

Lott holds a Masters in international affairs from the School of Global Policy and Strategy at the University of California, San Diego, and a Bachelor of Arts in economics and political science from Indiana University, Bloomington.

Ludmilla Parnell
Director, Business Development, Small Business Partnerships
General Dynamics Information Technology

Since 1997, Ludmilla Parnell has led the development of long-term relationships between small businesses and General Dynamics and the management of their mentor-protégé programs. Parnell's role provides for development of teaming relationships with small businesses in a variety of technical and customer-focused areas that support business development initiatives at General Dynamics Information Technology (IT). She implemented a business development approach to working with small businesses, and fostered an internal "Total Company Approach" to working with small companies. Her role extends into both capture and proposal development processes and includes coordination and support of mentor-protégé involvement. Parnell is a frequent speaker to small business audiences about business development approaches, teaming and working with prime contractors.

Between 1997 and 2002, Parnell played a leadership role in implementing and managing DOD-sponsored mentor-protégé programs, including coordinating the development of effective processes, organizing technical support teams for the protégés and interacting with the historically black colleges and universities/ minority institutions (HBCU/MI) community. Her work entailed daily interface with protégés to address and resolve their infrastructure challenges, facilitate partnership with the mentor, organize and oversee business solutions, technology transfer, business development and academic support to the program.

Under her leadership, the company has received recognition for its efforts with small business, to include the DOD Nunn-Perry Award for excellence in the mentor-protégé program, the first two Corporate Champion Awards in 2005 and 2006 from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for work with service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses, as well as others from organizations such as the National Industries for the Blind, the National Veteran Small Business Coalition and Government Technology & Services Coalition. As a member of the General Dynamics Small Business Committee, she led in the development of a common registration portal, which received a General Dynamics Supply Chain Excellence award in 2012.

Parnell is a life member of AFCEA and past co-chair of the AFCEA International Small Business Committee. She currently serves as chair of the General Dynamics Small Business Committee. She earned a bachelor's in life sciences from Queen's University (Kingston, ON) and a master's in business administration from Saint Mary's University (Halifax, NS). She is a former scientist and member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and served as a senior officer in the Canadian Armed Forces Naval Reserve.