When you think of personal branding, you may think of celebrities. But the government contracting sector has its own stars, who know exactly how to use their personal brand to the fullest. In my opinion, here are among the top 11 C-level executives who not only shine as leaders, but also hold their own when it comes to successfully building, managing and maintaining their personal brands.
Anne Altman, IBM’s general manager for the public sector, knows how to use her personal brand to help others. Heavily entrenched in charity work, Anne uses her brand to do good through her advisory positions in the academic, nonprofit and music sectors, working with organizations such as the Northern Virginia Technology Council, the National Symphony Orchestra and the National Kidney Foundation. She always has a positive attitude and is well-liked by her peers. How she describes her brand? “Passionate and dedicated to the public sector,” she told WashingtonExec.
Renny DiPentima, senior adviser at Providence Equity Partners, has had one of the most successful transition from government to industry CEO in recent years. After 30 years in the federal government Renny spent 12 years at SRA International, growing the IT services provider from $135 million in revenue to more than $1.2 billion. As proof of his expertise and leadership, Renny has been honored with numerous industry awards, including the more recent the Association for Corporate Growth’s 2010 Lifetime Achievement Award. Known as a likeable and well-respected man by government leaders, Renny has made his mark of success in the world of business and government. His personal brand allowed him to attract top government executives to come join SRA when he served as the firm’s CEO. As of today, SRA International was sold to Providence Equity Partners for $1.88 billion.
Sotera Defense Solutions CEO and President John Hillen is the only person on this list who has his own Wikipedia page. But his accomplishments don’t stop there: John is a war hero, academic, policy wonk, author and now successful CEO for the firm formerly known as Global Defense Technology & Systems, Inc. At age 45, John has amassed great knowledge and respect in both government and industry, and he’s been honored repeatedly. His eloquence, memory and brilliance are unique: When you meet John, you won’t forget it — and neither will he.
With more than a decade of experience under his belt, Greg Baroni, founder, chairman and CEO of Attain, is a relative newcomer in the government contracting space, but yet has one the best personal brands in the sector. He never hesitates to offer industry insight or to lend a helping hand to those who need it, whether his philanthropic engagements are with the National Kidney Foundation, The Women’s Center, or the American Red Cross of the National Capital Region. Greg has found the perfect balance of personal and professional, and thanks to his well-liked personality and charisma, many of his employees have followed him from job to job — a sure sign of a great leader.
You just need to say the name Donna, and everyone knows who you are talking about. As a nationally recognized executive in IT professional services management, CGI President of U.S., Europe and Asia Operations Donna Morea’s accolades include winning the Corporate Leadership Award from Women in Technology, the Private Sector Excellence award, the Fed 100 award, and Northern Virginia Community Foundation’s Community Leadership Award. With her sharp wit and New York upbringing, Donna always has a great story to tell — and an eager audience.
Whenever Bill Hoover’s name is mentioned, I always get a smile. It seems like in a town of sharp elbows, everyone likes the president and CEO of AMERICAN SYSTEMS. Just like Brad Antle, Bill is on Navy time and is a man of his word. It’s no wonder he landed on the Fed 100 list in 2009 and was named “Executive of the Year” at the 2009 Greater Washington Area Government Contractor Awards.
Before joining Serco Inc, Chairman and CEO Ed Casey had already achieved great professional success in the banking and energy business. Under his leadership Serco saw double-digit growth rates following the successful integration of two acquisitions. As a business leader with a very analytical mind, laser-beam focus and a nose for deals, Ed gives the term “businessman” new meaning.
Stu Shea, president of Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Group at SAIC who considers personal branding more as a philosophy than a chore, told me that his career is, “built upon a set of core values: honesty, integrity, commitment, teamwork, honor, respect, urgency, communication, passion, and having a broad community perspective.” As a key founding member of the United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation (USGIF), a non-profit and as an executive in charge of 12,000 scientist and engineers at SAIC, Stu is a modern renaissance man.
Sid Fuchs, senior advisor at Indus Corporation, likes networking and connecting so much he’s writing his own how-to book about the topic, due out this fall. Sid, a former CIA intelligence officer with more than 25 years experience in intelligence, national security, aerospace and defense, knows the value conveying the right message to others. “With your personal brand, you can’t always control what goes into it, but you can manage how people perceive you,” he previously told WashingtonExec.
With three decades of experience in the IT area, Brad Antle, president and CEO at Salient Federal Solutions, Inc. and chairman of NVTC, has great reputation as a forward-thinking leader among his peers. Thanks to his stint in the U.S. Navy, Brad is always early whenever he meets with people. Punctuality as a virtue, his actions resonate well with a great scribe. As Edward G. Bulwer-Lytton once said, “Punctuality is the stern virtue of men of business, and the graceful courtesy of princes.”
Todd Stottlemyer, CEO of Interactive Technology Solutions, may be a familiar face in the NoVa technology circles, but this policy junkie with a great track record of building successful companies is also founding member of nonprofit organization Helping Children Worldwide. His goal is to always do purposeful work, whether it’s for his business or for philanthropic commitments. Todd’s advice for building a solid brand: Simply be real. “Be yourself and don’t try to be someone you are not. Employees and others see right through a lack of authenticity,” he previously told WashingtonExec.