Yesterday, April 26, marked the fifth year anniversary of the founding of WashingtonExec, Inc.
Since its initial website launch and first evening roundtable with Vivek Kundra (the then-Federal CIO), the organization has evolved into 11 mission-focused Councils and a daily digital magazine with more 10,000 subscribers. In 2011, thanks to the formation of the WashingtonExec Leadership and Emerging Technologies Councils, chaired by Greg Baroni of Attain and Mark Cohn of Unisys Federal Systems, WashingtonExec began to define itself as an executive-level membership organization with a niche in outcome-oriented networking.
Today, the company represents 250 executive members and host 100 collaborative roundtables annually. I’ve learned more than I could have ever imagined as a business owner whose job it is to support and interact with thousands of leaders in our local business community. I want to take a moment to thank all of my employees (new and old), members, speakers, sponsors, advertisers and overall well-wishers in the area. As Sid Fuchs says in his book Get off The Bench, “When you need a relationship, it’s too late to build one. The network is powerful and is one of the most valued assets in life. Meet as many people as you can and invest in relationships. You will be amazed at the outcomes.”
Three years ago, I had the idea of providing a one-day STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) Symposium for the National Capital Region. After attending many nation-wide STEM events that included sessions with academics and government professionals, I thought that, with the support of WashingtonExec community partners, we could bridge the gap between parents, kids and the STEM workforce needs of local businesses and governmental agencies.
In 2014, with the guidance of Ed Swallow of The Aerospace Corporation, we launched the first K-12 STEM Symposium in Herndon, Va. On March 12, 2016, the 3rd Annual K-12 STEM Symposium hosted more than 3,000 parents, kids and teachers, coupled with more than 45 exhibits that included 3D printers, drones, flights simulators, physics experiences, heart monitors, topography models, puzzles, connected cars and robotics teams. We look forward to having you and your family March 18 for the 2017 K-12 STEM Symposium.
People often ask me, “What’s next?”.
WashingtonExec continues to build and expand its executive leadership and lifelong networking programs. The WashingtonExec Career Bridge is a unique program that offers professionals a single platform to make connections over the course of an entire career – starting at age 5 with the K-12 STEM Symposium, the College Leadership Program, the Rising Stars of GovCon, career management and executive leadership programs, to exit and retirement.
With WashingtonExec, you join as a member and stay for a lifetime. I look forward to seeing where the market takes us in the next five years. It will be anything but boring.