We work with visionaries who are ready to unlock the value of tomorrow’s America.
We are a strategy firm that serves as a bridge between America’s leading companies and small, dynamic businesses. Whether our client is a Fortune 500 firm or a high-growth company, we know that all organizations are looking to increase their competitive edge. Partnering with innovative small and minority-owned firms is critical to achieving that goal.
Fortune 500 companies conduct approximately $4 trillion annually in business deals with other large companies as well as small businesses in the United States. That is approximately eight times the size of the US Government contracting budget. Although minorities and women represent 68% of the population, firms owned by minorities and women win only approximately 3% of these private sector deals. Yet major corporations across the country are looking for ways to connect with this untapped talent. Our vision is to see that these connections happen and that this figure grows significantly.
Bibi Hidalgo served as a Presidential Appointee in the Administration of Barack Obama for over three years, including as White House Senior Policy Advisor to the Counselor for Strategic Engagement and the Counselor for the National Economic Council. She launched the government wide White House Small Business Procurement Group, chaired by the President’s Senior Advisor, Valerie Jarrett. Key outcomes included the U.S. Treasury Department increasing its small business contracting by $100 million in just one quarter and 11 federal agencies, including Defense, incorporating the Congressionally mandated small business goals into the annual performance evaluations of senior staff for fiscal year 12. This helped to preserve over $2 billion in government-wide small business contract opportunities during a time of significant budget cuts. Also, for the first time, over 20 Cabinet-level officials participated in small and minority business matchmaking events in 15 major U.S. Cities with over 10,000 businesses participating.
Bibi also served as a Senior Policy Director in the Office of Domestic Finance at the U.S. Department of the Treasury and as Senior Policy Advisor in the Office of Deputy Secretary Ron Sims at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. She most recently co-wrote a bipartisan report on the progress of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau since the passage of the Dodd-Frank Act.
Prior to joining the Administration, Bibi worked as a consultant and strategist for major U.S. foundations, NGO’s, and local non-profits seeking to achieve a social impact. In 2004 she founded “En Comunión,” a group of community leaders in Miami focused on bridging a 40-year divide between Miami and Cuba. She holds a Master of Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School and is a proud mom to her son, Joey. Together they are working toward their black belt in Tae Kwon Do.
Patrick served as a Presidential Appointee in the Administration of Barack Obama for three years, including his last role directing the White House Business Council. In that role, he served as a bridge between the President’s economic recovery vision and top business leaders from across the country. In addition to working on major policy issues such as the budget and immigration reform, he spearheaded minority and women business leader engagement strategies, launching the inaugural White House Hispanic Business Leaders Forum and leading the White House Council of Urban Professionals (CUP) Forum.
Previously, he served as Senior Advisor to the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs, where he formulated strategy on issues ranging from global entrepreneurship promotion to the US economic response to the Arab Spring.
Patrick’s business experience includes co-founding MindSight, a company that partners with top American universities and experts to provide leadership training to the private and public sector in the Middle East. He also worked for the strategy team of a multi-billion dollar conglomerate, Dubai Holding, which launched and managed companies in a variety of sectors.
Patrick’s organizing experience includes serving as the Obama campaign’s Florida Hispanic Vote Director in 2008. In 2002, he also co-founded “En Comunión,” an initiative to create a safe space for dialogue on Miami-Cuba relations that triggered a first-of-its-kind coalition of business, political and humanitarian groups in Miami seeking change in U.S.-Cuba policy.
Patrick earned his MBA from MIT Sloan, an MPA from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, and his BA from Georgetown University.
MARIE C. JOHNS
The Honorable Marie C. Johns has been a leader in business, community and government service for more than 30 years. From 2010 through June 2013, Marie was the Deputy Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA); she was nominated by President Barack Obama and unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate. As Deputy Administrator, Marie was responsible for management of the agency and development of SBA programs and policies. In 2011, as a result of her initiatives, the SBA supported more than $30 billion in lending to more than 60,000 small businesses, the most capital going to small business in SBA history. In addition to other duties, Marie had the privilege of serving as the chair of the President’s Interagency Task Force on Veterans’ Small Business Development.
Prior to government service, Marie held senior positions in the telecommunications industry, including serving as President of Verizon Washington (a $1 billion revenue company). Under Marie’s leadership, the company developed and implemented a regulatory plan that eventually served as a model for the corporation. Marie is recognized as a leader in the Washington, D.C. business community. She is a member of the Greater Washington Business Hall of Fame and has been one of Washingtonian Magazine’s “100 Most Powerful Women.” In addition to being founding chair of the Washington DC Technology Council, Marie has served as a board member, president or chair of the DC Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Washington Board of Trade.
Marie is the recipient of over 100 awards, including the National Coalition of 100 Black Women, “Trailblazer in Business” award; the National Journal, 25 Influential Black Women in Business Award; the D.C. Chamber of Commerce, Women Leadership Award; the Greater Washington Urban League Community Service Award; and the MD/DC Minority Supplier Development Council, “CEO of the Year” award.
Marie earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Indiana University’s School of Public and Environmental Affairs. She has been awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Howard University and an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Trinity University (Washington DC). Marie is a member of Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Church, where she serves on the Senior Board of Stewards.
ANDRES W. LOPEZ
Andres W. Lopez is an accomplished attorney and business leader with extensive involvement in the Latino community. During the 2012 presidential campaign, Mr. Lopez served as National Chairman of the Futuro Fund, a groundbreaking entity created by a group of national Latino leaders to raise funds in the Latino community on behalf of President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign. The Futuro Fund broke all previous records for Latino fundraising in presidential campaigns (raising $32 million), and shattered stereotypes about the financial strength and power of Latinos in America. Mr. Lopez served on President Obama’s National Finance Committee beginning in 2007, and served as an advisor to his 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns.
Mr. Lopez is a founder of the effort to create a Smithsonian American Latino Museum on the Washington, D.C. National Mall. Most recently, the Kennedy Center appointed Mr. Lopez to its Latino Advisory Panel. In 2012, PODER Magazine selected Mr. Lopez as one of the 100 Most Influential Hispanics in the United States. This year, he received the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce’s Chairman’s Award in recognition for his achievements and the Hispanic National Bar Association’s Pro Bono Attorney of the Year Award. In May 2013, Mr. Lopez co-developed the first-ever White House Hispanic Business Leaders Forum, which convened the top Latino business leaders from across the country.
He currently serves as President of the Federal Bar Association’s Puerto Rico Chapter. He is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School.
Lizet Ocampo ran the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Foundation, where she oversaw programs to support business growth, worked closely with the Fortune 500 to connect them to the minority business community, and managed over two hundred local Hispanic chambers across the country. In 2012, she was the National Regional Political Director at Obama for America where she designed, implemented and managed political programs aimed at strategically engaging elected officials and community leaders. Some described this as the most sophisticated political operation in the history of presidential politics. After the campaign, Lizet served in the Office of Public Engagement for the Presidential Inaugural Committee where she directed the outreach and inclusion of the Latino and Immigration constituencies for the nation. From 2009 to 2011, Lizet served at The White House in the Office of Legislative Affairs, where she worked to pass landmark legislation and was as part of the core inter-agency team strategizing on Latino issues. After her time at the White House, Lizet worked for the leadership office of Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Prior to coming to Washington, D.C., Lizet worked for Sheryl Sandberg at Google, where she focused on market research and statistical analysis. She received the Award of Excellence from Google top senior executives for founding the Hispanic Googler Network, which strengthened the company’s focus on Hispanic consumers. Ms. Ocampo also previously worked for the Presidential Transition Team, President Obama’s 2008 Presidential Campaign, U.S. Senator Bob Menendez, the National Labor Relations Board, and the U.S. Department of Justice.
Lizet received her B.A. in Political Science with Honors and Distinction from Stanford University and her M.A. from Stanford University’s School of Education.