Beyond Strategy Podcast

ACG National Capital Podcast

Hosted by Andy McEnroe and Jenn Wappaus, Beyond Strategy is an ACG National Capital Region podcast focused on the leaders that are driving innovation, enhancing understanding, and achieving market-clearing outcomes in and around the DC area. The podcast will interview senior-level executives, private equity partners, and industry leaders to discuss topics including, but not limited to, mergers and acquisitions, organic growth pursuits, leadership, and management strategies.



Episode 1: Carey Smith

A sit-down interview with Carey Smith, CEO & President of Parsons Corporation (NYSE: PSN), a nearly $4 billion market cap public company focused on providing technology-based solutions for the defense, intelligence, and critical infrastructure markets. Carey shares her thoughts on leadership, career progression, as well as what makes a successful organic and M&A driven growth strategy.

Episode 2: Andy Maner

A sit-down interview with Andy Maner, CEO of Avantus Federal, a NewSpring Capital portfolio company focused on delivering differentiated solutions to the Defense, Intelligence, Civilian, and Homeland Security markets. Andy shares his thoughts on what it’s like to lead an acquisitive private equity-backed company, the importance of investing in your people, and his vision for where Avantus, and the industry, is headed.

Episode 3: Kevin Robbins

Part one of a two-part series focusing on growth equity in the government contracting community. This episode features a sit-down with Kevin Robbins, co-founder of Blue Delta Capital Partners. Kevin shares the story behind how Blue Delta was established, the customer-centric value proposition they bring when working with a growth equity investor, and life lessons we can all relate to. 

Episode 4: Amy Bleken & Morgan Higgins

Part two of our series focuses on growth equity in the government contracting community, featuring  Amy Bleken, CEO of Client Solution Architects, and Morgan Higgins, Principal at Blue Delta Capital Partners. A sit-down discussion on the working relationship between an operating entity and a growth investor. The collaborative customer-centric environment embraced by both partners and the role each play in the growth of Client Solution Architects.

Episode 5: Bob Lohfeld, Jr

Bob Lohfeld, Jr. is the CEO of Sev1Tech, a leading provider of digital transformation, cybersecurity, cloud, and C5ISR solutions supporting critical mission challenges across the defense, intelligence, homeland security, space, and health markets. In a wide-ranging conversation, Bob shares his insight on how Sev1Tech supports its government customers, develops employees, maintains a robust company culture, and purses inorganic opportunities, among other topics.  

Episode 6: Jack Kerrigan and Peggy Styer

Solving challenges for mission critical companies, expertise in the national security sector, coupled with successes operating technology companies, represents a rare combination among venture capital /growth equity firms.  After successfully exiting two prominent businesses in 2021, the sales of BlackHorse to Parsons and BlackLynx to Jacobs, respectively, and completing a $340m capital raise for Fund III, hear how Peggy Styer and Jack Kerrigan of Razor’s Edge Ventures find, fund, and foster technology companies that are solving significant challenges for mission-focused customers. Discover what makes them tick, lessons learned, and what is next for Razor’s Edge.  Sectors of investment interest include cybersecurity, data science, data infrastructure, space, C4ISR solutions and sensor technologies, to name a few.

Episode 7: Jared Shepard

Jared Shepard is an experienced and innovative industry leader with other twenty years of information technology, federal services, and sales experience. A U.S. Army veteran, Jared is the architect behind two successful businesses, Hypori and Intelligent Waves, and a rapidly expanding non-profit, Warriors Ethos. On this episode of Beyond Strategy, hear is thoughts on leadership, business evolution, and giving back to support others.  Jared also shares his background and why he believes non-traditional experience can make great leaders as well as employees.

Episode 8: Olivia Trivisani Bowker

Part one of our three-part series on building a business in the government contracting market. In this episode, we explore the first of three ways businesses are built, founder bootstrap led, as we sit down with Olivia Trivisani Bowker, Founder & CEO of Amivero.

In this episode, Olivia shares her experiences and insights on how to build a successful business from the ground up, including the challenges and opportunities she faced as a founder. She also discusses the culture of openness, engagement, empowerment, authenticity, and agility that she has cultivated at Amivero, which has helped her company stand out in a crowded market.

Whether you're an aspiring entrepreneur, a GovCon professional, or simply interested in hearing from a successful business leader, this episode offers valuable insights and inspiration. Don't miss out on the opportunity to learn from Olivia Trivisani Bowker's story and the knowledge/tricks of the trade she's acquired along the way. Tune in now to Episode #8 of our series on building a business in the government contracting market.

Episode 9: Rick Tossavainen & Steve Bailey

Part two of our three-part series on building a business in the government contracting market. In this episode, we dive into the second way businesses are formed - the spin-out of an operating business - and speak with Rick Tossavainen, CEO, and Steve Bailey, COO of Dark Wolf Solutions.

Dark Wolf Solutions is an innovative company that spun out from Wolf Den Associates in 2018. They provide cutting-edge cybersecurity solutions to the federal government, helping agencies safeguard their critical systems and data from cyber threats. With their unique approach to cybersecurity and a team of top-tier experts, Dark Wolf Solutions is quickly making a name in the GovCon space.

In this episode, Rick and Steve share their experiences of starting and growing a spin-out company, including the challenges they faced and the lessons they learned along the way. They discuss the unique advantages and disadvantages of the spin-out model and how it differs from other approaches to starting a business.

Whether you're interested in cybersecurity, entrepreneurship, or simply want to learn from successful business leaders, this episode is not to be missed. Tune in now to hear from Rick Tossavainen and Steve Bailey of Dark Wolf Solutions in Episode #9 of our series on building a business in the government contracting market.

Episode 10: Robert Miller - The Private Equity Path to Success

Episode 10 marks the final episode of our three-part series on how businesses are formed in the government contracting market. In this episode, we delve into an intriguing path to success - the private equity buy and build, with Robert Miller, the Chief Executive Officer of SilverEdge Government Solutions (“SilverEdge”), a portfolio company of Godspeed Capital (“Godspeed”).

SilverEdge is a purpose build provider of cybersecurity, software, and intelligence solutions to U.S. federal government, defense, and intelligence customers. The company was formed through the vision of Godspeed and the management team, as well as the acquisitions of Varen Technologies, Exceptional Software Strategies, Savli Group, QVine, Counter Threat Solutions, and Gardetto Engineering. With a strong focus on innovation and efficiency, they have successfully served numerous government agencies, leaving a lasting impact on the industry.

In this episode, Robert shares how SilverEdge was founded, the strategic role of private equity in its growth, and the advantages it provided in a competitive market. We explore the intricacies of working with private equity investors, integrating six companies in one year, the opportunities and challenges presented, and how they contribute to the long-term vision and expansion of SilverEdge.

Episode 11: V2X, The Story Behind Vectrus & Vertex Merger

The Masterminds behind the Vectrus – Vertex merger, a game-changing deal that formed a new publicly traded company, V2X. This merger created a formidable force in the industry and established a new corporate headquarters right here in the heart of the national capital region.

V2X is the leading provider of critical mission solutions, primarily focusing on serving defense clients across 343 locations and an astounding 45 countries and territories worldwide. With its vast global footprint, V2X delivers fully converged solutions throughout the mission lifecycle, empowering clients to achieve their goals rapidly and precisely. Boasting approximately 15,400 talented employees, the company offers an impressive suite of technology and service capabilities to support readiness and modernization initiatives worldwide. From operations and logistics to aerospace, training, and technology markets, V2X caters to national security, defense, civilian, and international clients with a comprehensive array of integrated solutions and critical services.

Joining us are the architects behind V2X's tremendous success: Chuck Prow, Chief Executive Officer, Susan Lynch, Chief Financial Officer, and Sue Deagle, Chief Growth & Client Service Officer. They will share their unique insights, challenges, and triumphs that led to the formation of V2X and its impact on the national capital region and beyond.

Tune in to this episode of Beyond Strategy as we explore the driving forces behind the Vectrus – Vertex merger and the remarkable journey that led to the creation of V2X. Don't miss this opportunity to gain exclusive access to the minds of industry visionaries and discover the transformative power of deals in the national capital region.


Beyond Strategy- Hosted by Andy McEnroe & Jenn Wappaus