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New Jersey, Texas Firms Take Top Prize as National Contractors of the Year at National Small Business Week

Release Date: 
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Release Number: 
Advisory Number: 
Tiffani S. Clements (202) 401-0035

Small businesses, business leaders and government officials honored

WASHINGTON –A small business contractor from New Jersey and another from Texas, were named the National Prime Contractor of the Year and National Subcontractor of the Year during a breakfast ceremony held today by the U.S. Small Business Administration as part of National Small Business Week at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Washington, D.C.

The Small Business Prime Contractor and Small Business Subcontractor of the Year awards honor small businesses that have provided the government and private sector with outstanding goods and services either as prime contractors or as subcontractors. This year’s winners are:

  • Small Business Prime Contractor of the Year: Anne C. O’Brien, president of Kalimex, Inc. of Ocean View, N.J. This woman-owned, 8(a)-certified, small disadvantaged construction company boasts 14 years of successful project experience and more than $18 million in annual sales revenues. In one of those projects, Kalimex reopened the stairs to the crown in the Statue of Liberty for the first time since 9/11, ensuring visitors’ safe ascent up the famous double helix stairway to the observation level in the statue’s crown. The National Park Service described Kalimex’s work on the Statue of Liberty as “sleek, elegant and magnificent.” Another notable project for Kalimex, Inc. includes exterior building renovation and masonry repairs on Edgar Allen Poe’s Historic house in Philadelphia for the National Park Service.

  • Small Business Subcontractor of the Year: W.T. Gardner, founder and CEO of Savage Precision Fabrication, Inc. of Wylie, Texas. Gardner founded Savage, a veteran-owned and Native-American owned firm, with $2,000 worth of tools. The company manufactures precision machine and sheet metal fabrication components, including mechanical assemblies made of aluminum, titanium, copper, stainless steel and plastics, to meet design specifications and support the aerospace, military, defense and high-tech industries. It develops in-house processes such as heat treating, aging, Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) and Metal Inert Gas (MIG) that are usually outsourced by a small business. The company has 38 employees, $4.4 million in annual sales in 2008 and is a preferred manufacturer in the aerospace and defense industry.

“Today we celebrate the contributions of the outstanding business leaders, government officials and small businesses whose inspiring work in the federal contracting arena are creating jobs and helping lead economic recovery. Contracting with small businesses is a win-win for both the government and small businesses: the government gets access to the most innovative companies and small businesses get the oxygen they need to grow and take their businesses to the next level. That’s why it’s so important that more than $7 billion in federal contracts have already been awarded to small businesses under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act,” said SBA Administrator Karen G. Mills.

The breakfast was sponsored by Raytheon.

Small business owners, corporate leaders, government officials and volunteers from across the country are in Washington, D.C., for the three-day conference to be honored during five major award events for their achievements as America’s top entrepreneurs. The contracting awards recognize businesses and organizations for their commitment to providing contracting and subcontracting opportunities to small, women-owned and small disadvantaged businesses.

Other federal contracting awards included:
Dwight D. Eisenhower Award for Excellence, recognizing large prime contractors that have excelled in their use of small businesses as suppliers and subcontractors. The recipients are:

  • Richard A. Heltzel, president, Healy Tibbitts Builders, Inc. of Aiea, Hawaii; (Construction Category).

  • Keith Joy, director, Small Business Programs, UT-Battelle, LLC/Oak Ridge National Laboratory of Oak Ridge, Tenn.; (Research & Development Category).

  • Amber Janey, small business liaison officer, Rockwell Collins of Cedar Rapids, Iowa; (Manufacturing Category).

Frances Perkins Vanguard Award, honoring government and industry for excellence in the use of women-owned small businesses as prime contractors and subcontractors. The recipients are:

  • Jim Cuff, senior vice president, Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) of McLean, Va (Industry Buying Activity);

  • Kevin Boshears, director of the Office of Small Disadvantaged Business Utilization of the Department of Homeland Security of Washington, D.C. (Federal Buying Activity);

  • Bennie Boren, acquisition supervisor/small business specialist of the Public Works Department Gulfport, NAVFAC Southeast of Gulfport, Miss. (Federal Procurement Official)

Gold Star Award, recognizing the exemplary performance of federal agencies and their dedicated personnel who carry out the aggressive goals and strategic initiatives that help ensure a role for small business in the federal marketplace. The recipient is:

  • Judith P. Croxton, director of Business Operations, Shaw Air Force Base-20th Contracting Squadron of Shaw AFB, S.C.

Surety Bond Award, honoring the 16 participating surety companies and bond producers for the support they provide to small businesses who need help securing bid, payment and performance bonds. Two prominent National Surety Trade Associations will accept the awards on their behalf. They are:

  • Ms. Lynn Schubert, President, The Surety & Fidelity Association of America; and

  • Mr. Mark H. McCallum, Chief Executive Officer, the National Association of Surety Bond Producers.

Small Business Week featured a series of forums on Innovation, Exporting and Social Media, designed to help entrepreneurs with current, real-world issues that impact their businesses. There was also a town hall forum to discuss small business concerns.

For additional details on Small Business Week 2010, including a full schedule of events and information on all award winners, visit

Small Business Week 2010 sponsors and cosponsors include: Sam’s Club, Visa, Ford, ADP, Raytheon, Cbeyond, UPS, Intuit, Google, eBay, AT&T, Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin, D&B, Verio, ASBDC, NADCO, NAGGL, NASE, NSBA, WIPP and SCORE.

The U.S. Small Business Administration’s participation in this cosponsored activity does not constitute an express or implied endorsement of any cosponsor’s, donor’s, grantee’s, contractor’s or participant’s opinions, products, or services. All SBA programs and cosponsored programs are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis. Reasonable arrangements for persons with disabilities will be made, if requested at least 2 weeks in advance, by contacting Cosponsorship Authorization #SBW2010 

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