The Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce and Professional Services Council have unveiled the finalists for the 14th Annual Greater Washington Government Contractor Awards, the premier awards event for the Washington area government contracting community. The winners will be named at a Nov. 1 gala dinner at the Ritz-Carlton Tysons Corner.
WashingtonExec sat down with one of this year’s GovCon Awards Gold Sponsor, Kristen Soles, CPA and partner at CohnReznick, to discuss leadership and other issues.
WashingtonExec: What motivated your company to take part in the GovCon Awards?
Kristen Soles: As CohnReznick’s government contracting industry practice is immersed in the challenges and opportunities that face contractors each day, it is a natural fit for us to sponsor the Greater Washington Government Contractor Awards that honors the leadership, innovation and commitment to excellence displayed by our region’s government contractors.
WashingtonExec: Where in the GovCon space does your company work?
Kristen Soles: CohnReznick not only provides audit, tax and compliance consulting to government contractors but we are also a government contractor ourselves. CohnReznick provides the DCAA audit services to many civilian agencies performing incurred cost, proposal, CAS, termination and other audits on behalf of the federal government.
WashingtonExec: As these awards are in large part a recognition of great leaders in the GovCon space, what do you believe are qualities that make a great leader?
Kristen Soles: Leadership means identifying others around you and appreciating who they are and what they bring to the table. Talking, training, explaining and being creative are all leadership traits. We believe a leader surrounds themselves with good people and puts people in positions for success. It is also standing up for what you believe in and wanting to make a difference. Leadership is also the ability to move a group of people collectively forward, in a good way, and being prepared to make adjustments along the way.
WashingtonExec: What makes your company a great place to work?
Kristen Soles: We are committed to providing our employees with unlimited possibilities for professional and personal growth, giving people new challenges and opportunities, and rewarding them for their efforts. Through our PYRAMID awards, the firm recognizes the talent and achievements of employees who go “above and beyond” in demonstrating these values through their interactions and activities.
Additionally, through our WomenCAN program, The Collaborative Advocacy Network for Women, CohnReznick invests in the career growth and long-term development of our women.
WashingtonExec: How is your business involved in the community? (corporate citizenship)
Kristen Soles: Since its founding, CohnReznick has maintained a commitment to community service. Under the stewardship of CohnReznick’s national social impact committee, the firm launched CohnReznick CARES, a community service “call to action” that demonstrates a commitment to Community, Advocacy, Responsibility, Education and Service.
CohnReznick CARES communicates the firm’s deep commitment to community involvement while serving as the umbrella for the diverse charitable activities and initiatives supported on both a national and office (local) level to include the pay it forward program, many national charities, Joe Torre Safe At Home Foundation, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Medhen Orphan Relief Effort, and Special Operations Warrior Foundation. Locally, CohnReznick
CARES also supports a wide variety of organizations in the metro Maryland area, through funding and community service to include: A Wider Circle, Barker Adoption Foundation, Bethesda Cares, Bethesda Green, Boys & Girls Club of Greater Washington, Fisher House, Food for Others, Habitat for Humanity, Hero Dogs, Junior Achievement, Montgomery County Parks, National Center For Children & Families, Martha’s Table, Shepherd’s Table and The Children’s Inn at NIH.
CohnReznick is also this year’s recipient of the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce’s Corporate Social Responsibility Award.