—Firm has Received six 8(a) Contracts for $9.8 Million—
Like many entrepreneurs, Sanquinetta Dover paid some dues before she returned to Atlanta in 1996 to start DoverStaffing Inc., a professional placement and project management firm that has grown to over 200 employees.
After graduating from Spelman College in Atlanta with a degree in Economics, she spent six years with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) in its bank liquidation division in Chicago and Midland, Texas. She later held several corporate sales positions in Chicago and spent over two years running her first small business, a wood pallet manufacturing firm in the Windy City.
Dover says she first learned about the SBA’s 8(a) Business Development program in Chicago during the operation of her first small business. Her knowledge of the program would pay large dividends after DoverStaffing was certified as an 8(a) and Small Disadvantaged Business in 2003.
Since it was certified, DoverStaffing has received six contracts through the 8(a) program for a total of $9.8 million. The first of these contracts came in 2006 when the company was named the prime contractor for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Cotton Division to provide administrative staff and light industrial machine operators. Another 8(a) award calls for the company to be the prime contractor for the U.S. Army Reserve’s Survivor Outreach Services (SOS) program. This contract provides support and financial counselors nationwide to families of fallen soldiers.
The company’s latest contract was an Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) award for the U.S. Department of Navy’s “SeaPort-e” program. SeaPort-e is the Navy’s electronic platform for acquiring support services in 22 functional areas including Engineering, financial Management and Program Management.
“These contracts have been very important in assisting the development of our company,” says Dover. “They have allowed us to gain valuable management performance that will position us to compete further in the private and public sector.”
There are other benefits to the 8(a) program besides having the opportunity to bid on sole-source and limited competition federal contracts. The nine-year program, limited to firms owned by economically and socially disadvantaged individuals, also offers management and technical assistance as well as counseling and monitoring services by staff located in SBA district offices.
When her company joined the 8(a) program, its employment level was about 75 people, according to Dover, a native of Greenwood, S.C. Besides its headquarters staff, the company now has employees based nationwide to handle additional contracts that include work for the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Looking to its graduation from 8(a) in 2012, Dover says her company is continually marketing its business to help sustain growth past its current portfolio of contracts.
Its marketing efforts recently paid off when DoverStaffing was one of one of six firms that were awarded contracts by the State of Georgia’s Department of Administrative Services to provide 1,000 temporary jobs to state agencies with federal stimulus funds.
To help with its development, Dover moved the company’s main office this year to a HUBZone located on Cleveland Avenue in Fulton County. The HUBZone program establishes preferences for federal contracts to small businesses located in “historically underutilized business zones.”
Dover says the positive influence of her parents, both educators, helped her reach many of her career goals. Her father earned a PhD degree before he became superintendent of schools in Greenwood County, S.C. “Managing money and living within my means are lessons are learned from my father,” she said.
DoverStaffing received the Atlanta Business League’s “Success Against the Odds” Award in 2005 and the Regional Director’s Award from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency in 2006.
Sanquinetta Dover, President/CEO
777 Cleveland Ave.
Atlanta, GA 30315
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