National Supplier Council Prime ConnectWorks Series : Utilizing an Opportunity-Driven Approach to Working with Prime Contractors

Join Vikki Hawthorne, USWCC National Director | Supplier Development and special guest, Ludmilla Parnell, Director of Business Development, Small Business Partnerships for the February National Supplier Council webcast ‘Utilizing an Opportunity-Driven Approach to Working with Prime Contractors’.

This session will provide small businesses with general guidance on having an opportunity-driven approach to working with prime contractors, as well as some specific insight on working with General Dynamics, particularly General Dynamics Information Technology (GDIT).

As a trusted systems integrator for more than 50 years, General Dynamics Information Technology provides information technology (IT), systems engineering, professional services and simulation and training to customers in the defense, federal civilian government, health, homeland security, intelligence, state and local government and commercial sectors. Headquartered in Fairfax, Va., with major offices worldwide, the company delivers IT enterprise solutions, manages large-scale, mission-critical IT programs and provides mission support services. General Dynamics IT works with a large number of small businesses, providing them with growth opportunities through teaming, subcontracting, and procurement opportunities.

GDIT uses the following NAICS codes:

541330, 541512, 518210, 517919, 541620

Date & Time

Wednesday, February 22, 2017. 11:00 am – 12:00 pm Eastern Standard Time

Registration & Fees

 Click Here to Register 

This meeting is complimentary to Supplier level members. For Business members, the fee is $15. For Individual and Advocate members, the fee is $35.


Vikki Hawthorne is the National Director | Supplier Development for the Chamber. Widely regarded as a passionate small business resource partner who thoroughly understands the many challenges of small business ownership, Ms. Hawthorne has extensive ‘insider’ experience in federal government contracting and training.  In 2014, Ms. Hawthorne retired with 30 years of federal government service with the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA).

Ms. Hawthorne spent over 15 years as the Supplier Outreach Program Manager in the DLA Land and Maritime Small Business Programs Office before her promotion to the senior leadership position of Associate Director.  In that role, Ms. Hawthorne collaborated with small business advocate organizations and prime contractors to promote small business participation in federal prime and subcontracting procurement opportunities.  Ms. Hawthorne further expanded and facilitated supplier education with Training, Knowledge, Opportunities Seminars hosted by DLA Land and Maritime.

Ms. Hawthorne — frequently regarded as subject matter expert for supplier and acquisition personnel training development — was known nationally as an enthusiastic and thoughtful speaker, facilitator and trainer.

Ludmilla Parnell – Director, Business Development, Small Business Partnerships

Since 1997, Ms. Parnell has led the development of long-term relationships between small businesses and General Dynamics and the management of their Mentor-Protégé programs. Ms. 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.

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 Veterans Administration for work with Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned small businesses, as well as others. As an integral member of the General Dynamics Small Business Committee, she played a leadership role in the development of a common registration portal, which received a General Dynamics Supply Chain Excellence award in 2012.

Ms. Parnell is a past co-chair of the AFCEA International Small Business.   She currently serves as Chair of the General Dynamics Small Business Committee.  She earned a bachelor’s degree in Science from Queen’s University (Kingston, ON) and a master’s degree in Business Administration from Saint Mary’s University (Halifax, NS). She is a former member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and has served as a Senior Officer in the Canadian Armed Forces Naval Reserve.