Top 10 Operating Executives to Watch: Dawn Halfaker, Halfaker & Associates

Dawn Halfaker, Halfaker & Associates

Dawn Halfaker, Halfaker & Associates

After overcoming a severe injury while serving as a military police captain during Operation Iraqi Freedom, Dawn Halfaker launched her own firm in 2006 with the mission, “Continuing to Serve.”

“As I recovered, I knew I wanted to stay connected with the military and started to focus on what I had rather than what I had lost,” she recalled. “After seeking a perfect fit with other companies and internships, but not finding what I was looking for, I decided to forge my own path and start Halfaker and Associates.”

Why Watch:

Over the past three years, Halfaker has seen 420 percent revenue growth, become a notable contender for large-scale prime contracts and grown its workforce to more than 500. In the last year alone, the firm doubled its number of employees and hired a new chief operating officer, chief financial officer and chief growth officer.

As Halfaker has grown over the years, work has shifted from smaller, limited-scope contracts to larger prime contracts geared toward systems modernization, cloud solutions and cybersecurity. Along the way, the firm has reorganized a few times to meet changing needs.

Recent large, strategic, prime contract wins like the Department of Veterans Affairs’ Cyber Security Operations Center Next Generation, valued at $185 million, have bolstered Halfaker’s already robust track record, making it a proven mid-tier prime.

“Major mission-oriented wins like CSOC that require scalable, highly specialized technical teams have prompted us to evolve our organizational structure into more specialized portfolios of work — which will be critical as we branch beyond small business opportunities into the full and open space,” Halfaker said.

Halfaker’s Corporate Agile Delivery Center and enterprise-level agile delivery framework drive rapid application development across multiple teams and product lines through shared services and automation tools. Applying these leading-edge engineering and delivery techniques to large-scale cloud modernization initiatives and emerging areas of focus like customer experience measurement is a key component of Halfaker’s technology strategy that sets the company apart.

Out of more than 3,000 competitors, Halfaker has been ranked as the eighth most successful small business under the IT NAICS code since 2016. Halfaker is the No. 2 small business and No. 4 company overall on the T4NG contract and currently ranks No. 4 overall out of 141 CMS SPARC vendors in total contract bookings.

“We have made targeted investments in areas where we feel we can make the most mission impact to our customers,” Halfaker said. “We have been fortunate that our focus on deepening these technical offerings has also allowed us to sustain a healthy growth rate.”

In the coming year, expect Halfaker to build on its core capabilities in software engineering and cybersecurity into more specialized areas such as machine learning, health analytics and artificial intelligence.

Read the entire Top 10 Operating Executives to Watch list here.

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