Stennis Industry Day 2011
Stennis Industry Days is all about doing business and making connections with federal and state agencies, contractors and businesses, not just at Stennis Space Center but around the country.
This year's event will be held Feb. 27-March 1 at IP Casino Resort Spa in Biloxi. A special tour of Stennis Space Center and nearby Infinity Science Center will be available on opening day for registered attendees.
In just a few years, Stennis Industry Days has become known for successfully bringing together participants seeking business partnerships that might otherwise have been missed.
SDT Inc. of Brookhaven, Miss., is a returning exhibitor and its president, James Ezell, said his growing family of companies is looking to connect with other businesses.
"It's the main reason we're coming back," he said. "We're always looking for new opportunities to talk to people."
SDT is one of the country's leading privately held telecom infrastructure service companies. It partnered with the Mississippi Enterprise for Technology at Stennis Space Center in 2007 to help promote the state as a new telecommunications center.
Ezell said he's looking to "develop some relationships that can grow over time and to get a better understanding of federal contracting opportunities."
A new exhibitor this year will be RBG Contractors of Jackson, Miss., which specializes in specialty coatings for the construction industry. Bill Griffiths, the company president, explained the main reason he will be part of the event: "For one thing it's the exposure to other companies that will be participating." His company represents a line of coatings that it markets. "We're looking for customers," he said. The company recently opened an office in the MSET
Besides networking, those attending will get an update on the various activities at Stennis Space Center, and the Stennis Business Consortium will host a special awards ceremony.
On opening day, Wednesday, Feb. 27, there will be tours of Stennis Space Center and Infinity Science Center, followed by a VIP reception and the SBC Awards Reception.
On Thursday the agenda is packed with presentations following opening remarks by Charlie Beasley, president and CEO of Mississippi Enterprise for Technology. Ken Human, associate director of Stennis Space Center, then will discuss the federal city's history and current missions.
Stennis contractors will kick off a series of presentations describing their activities, followed by representatives from the Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command, Booz Allen Hamilton, General Dynamics, the National Data Buoy Center, NASA's Shared Services Center, CSC, Hewlett Packard and the Naval Research Laboratory.
Keynote speaker at the luncheon will be Brent Christensen, executive director of the Mississippi Development Authority, the state's lead economic and community development agency. Christensen oversees 300 employees who provide services such as business recruitment, retention and expansion, and implement programs including tourism, community development and small business growth.
"Stennis Industry Days will help businesses from Mississippi and other locations around the United States learn more about all that the Stennis Space Center and its many public and private sector tenants have to offer," said Christensen.
"This event will include not only informative sessions but also networking opportunities that will help bring businesses together with other firms and government agencies to encourage business partnerships and economic growth."
The day concludes with a networking session that will be held in the exhibit hall.
On Friday, March 1, the 10th Annual Rotary Club of Stennis Charity Golf Tournament is scheduled.
This year Stennis Industry Days will feature the inaugural Stennis Business Consortium's SBC Team-member Achievement Recognition (STAR) Awards on Feb. 27.
The consortium assists federal and state agencies, local institutions and business exchange information on their small business goals, needed and emerging technologies, procurement requirements and opportunities and procurement regulation issues.
The goal of the annual presentation is to recognize outstanding member organizations located in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida's Panhandle.
Four awards will be given, including the SBC Small Business of the Year, which will honor good business practices, participation in SBC and SBC partner events and other significant contributions such as export or tech transfer activities and increased employment.
The SBC Newcomer of the Year will be given to the member organization that quickly became involved in SBC activities as well as for good business practices, event participation and other noteworthy contributions.
The award honoring SBC Innovator of the Year will recognize the impact of the winner's new product or invention, among other criteria.
SBC's Federal Agency/Prime Contractor of the Year award will go to the agency or contractor whose good business practices, support to small businesses and event participation stood out during the last year. - Lisa Monti
For more information about Stennis Industry Days, visit: www.stennisindustrydays.com