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A recognized expert in business development and corporate growth, she has widespread experience in both the public and private sectors.
Courtney B. Spaeth is one of the leading business development and corporate growth experts in the world, with a focus on emerging technologies, and widespread experience in both the public and private sectors. Mrs. Spaeth founded growth[period] in 2007, and as CEO she has successfully guided the company through the acquisition of Potomac Recruiting, the raising of growth capital from Morgan Stanley, as well as the development of growth[period]’s mergers and acquisition support vertical. As a result of her leadership, growth[period] has a proven track record of helping over 250 companies in both the commercial and federal sectors achieve smart growth through business development and through acquisitions. growth[period]’s broad range of clients include: Lockheed Martin, Verizon, Magnetar Capital, Stanley Black and Decker, Clairvest, Nemacolin Woodlands Resort, Leadiant Biosciences, Serco, General Dynamics, Fractal Industries AI, SAB Capital, LLR Capital, Inside the NFL, Sokolin Wine, Morgan Stanley and many other Fortune 500, middle market, and private equity firms in the U.S. and internationally. She also was part of the leadership team and a member of the Board of Directors for Momentum Aerospace Group that sold the company in 2018 for almost $400M.
Prior to founding growth[period], Mrs. Spaeth served as Corporate Vice President of Homeland Security for Raytheon Company. While at Raytheon she was responsible for developing the company’s homeland security business in North America, the Middle East, Eastern and Western Europe, and Asia, and in less than two years her efforts resulted in new revenue of over $1 billion USD. Before Raytheon, Mrs. Spaeth served as Director of Homeland Systems Solutions for Lockheed Martin, where she won over $3 billion USD in new business. In 2000, President Clinton appointed Mrs. Spaeth to the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations / Low Intensity Conflict, where she was the Assistant in Charge of Global Terrorism Issues. Previously, Mrs. Spaeth served as the Director of Force Health Protection for the Gulf War Illness Task Force in the Department of Defense. Additionally, Mrs. Spaeth has also worked at the Department of Justice in the Criminal Antitrust Division, and in the Office of Chief Counsel to the President in the White House in the Clinton Administration.
Mrs. Spaeth has extensive experience as a corporate board member and serves on the Board of Directors for a number of private companies, non-profits, and professional associations, including: Momentum Aerospace Group (MAG) (tenure ended in 2018), boodle AI, Marymount University, the Executive Board of the Greater Washington Board of Trade, Potomac Recruiting, and she just recently resigned from the Board of Directors for Hope for the Warriors, where she chaired the Development Committee for the last decade. She also serves on the Trustees Council for Women at the University of Pennsylvania. Mrs. Spaeth is also on the Dean’s Advisory Council for George Mason University School of Business and a member of The Economic Club of Washington, D.C. Mrs. Spaeth was the recipient of the 2019 Joseph Wharton Award for Entrepreneurship in the Washington, D.C. region from the University of Pennsylvania. She is also the recipient of the Smart CEO 2016 DC Brava CEO Award, the Vigiano Family 2015 Hope and Courage Award for her Service to the Veteran Community, and the 2014 Angel Outreach Award from the Business and Professional Women’s Foundation for her mentoring of veterans nationwide.
Mrs. Spaeth has been featured in national and trade media, including: Business Week, CBS News, iHeart Radio, the Washington Business Journal, Women of Influence magazine, Town & Country magazine, and SmartCEO magazine, etc. She, and her company, were profiled in 2019 on PBS on the show “Success Files” narrated by Rob Lowe. Mrs. Spaeth holds an Executive MBA in International Business from the TRIUM Global Executive MBA Program – an alliance of the London School of Economics, NYU Stern School of Business and HEC in Paris, a master’s degree in National Security Studies from Georgetown University and a Bachelor of Art degree, with honors (cum laude), from the University of Pennsylvania. She also completed her Governance Fellowship through the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) and is a speaker in their Director Professionalism series, and she holds a Post Graduate Certificate in Art Crime from the Association for Research into Crimes against Art. For the past seven years, growth[period] has been voted in the top twenty “best places to work” by the Washington Business Journal. Currently, Mrs. Spaeth resides in both Maryland and Colorado with her husband, three children, and four dogs, and she and her family also co-own their local ice-cream store, Sprinkles Potomac in Maryland.
Sharon has over thirty years of experience in public and private accounting working with small and medium-sized businesses. Her experience in the professional services, real estate, property management, government contracting, not-for-profit, medical, construction and contracting, and the hospitality industries allows her clients to benefit from this expertise. She holds the credentials of Certified Public Accountant, Certified Fraud Examiner and Chartered Global Management Accountant.
Prior to joining growth[period], Sharon held the position of Principal with a mid-size Certified Public Accounting firm. She was the first female Principal in the 45-year history of the firm. She designed, implemented and ran two highly successful business divisions: Forensic Accounting and Outsourced CFO Solutions, both of which experienced dramatic growth under her leadership. She led all marketing, branding and business development efforts for these divisions. During this time Sharon served as an outsourced CFO for more than a dozen clients.
Sharon has extensive experience in preparing liquidity reviews, risk assessments, internal control analysis, net worth determinations, all phases of financial statement audits, reviews and compilations, tax return preparation for individuals, corporations, trusts and partnerships, and limited liability companies and conducting forensic examinations related to possible fraud. She has extensive experience with small business consulting and advisory services, including start-up entity consulting, software selection, best practices recommendations, cost-cutting reviews, and business goal strategies. Sharon is also a qualified expert witness who has testified as an expert in financial fraud cases.
Brigadier General Lyn D. Sherlock, USAF, Ret., is a proven executive with over 30 years of experience leading both large, diverse organizations and smaller, high-performing teams in the Department of Defense and Department of State addressing national security, policy, operations, training, and resource issues. Lyn has extensive experience speaking to defense industry partners, business councils, congressional staffs, senior U.S. government and foreign officials, and the media. Brigadier General Sherlock has been the Senior Partner responsible for growth[period]’s defense, aerospace and federal practice for the last ten years, during which she has overseen and actively led client accounts and delivered innovative and results-oriented solutions.
Lyn’s last appointment in government was from 2009-2011 as the Director of Regional Affairs for Air Force International Affairs in the Pentagon. In that role, she was responsible for leading the Air Force’s direct liaison with foreign government officials, US Government officials, and aerospace industry representatives to plan, negotiate and execute security cooperation programs to foreign governments. Prior to that, from 2008-2009, she served as the Director of Air Operations for the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, Plans, and Requirements.
From 2006-2008, Lyn served in senior positions in the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Political-Military Affairs including the Director of Office International Security Operations and Senior Military Representative to State. Prior to her positions at the Department of State, Lyn commanded the Air Force’s largest Air Mobility Wing at Travis Air Force Base and was the Operations Group Commander for the Air Force’s primary nuclear airlift force at McChord Air Force Base. While deployed in Germany and Qatar, she commanded airlift and tanker units supporting Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom, and was deployed to the Combined Air Operations Center. In addition to the above accomplishments, Lyn was the United States Transportation Command Liaison to the United States Central Command and the United States Special Operations Command providing transportation expertise to both Commands after the attacks of September 2001. She also served in a number of command and staff assignments at the Pentagon including the Air Force Chief of Staff’s Operations Group and in the Directorate of Forces.
Lyn earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Engineering Mechanics from the United States Air Force Academy, a Master of Science degree in Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, and a Master of Science degree in National Resource Strategy from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces in Washington, D.C. Additionally, she has served on various boards including Veterans Moving Forward, a nonprofit organization that trains and provides service dogs for veterans.
Gregory A. Scovel has over 41 years of experience in government, military, and commercial operations, including 31 years at the Naval Criminal Investigative Services (NCIS) where he retired as Acting Director in 2010. He has a significant record of successes in the areas of counterintelligence, combating terrorism, law enforcement, cyber operations, risk assessments, and threat analysis. At growth[period], Mr. Scovel advises clients on the Federal, Defense & Aerospace market.
In addition to his work at growth[period], Mr. Scovel is Chairman of Geocollect, a geospatial intelligence company, and was previously Vice President of National and Cyber Solutions at CACI, Inc.
At NCIS, Mr. Scovel was Deputy Director for Operations and Acting Director and was a member of the NCIS Executive Staff and Senior Executive Service (SES). He also served as Executive Assistant Director for Counterintelligence and Executive Assistant Director for Criminal Investigations at NCISHQ and was detailed to the USS Cole Commission. Prior to those roles, Mr. Scovel served as Special Agent in Charge at the Washington Field Office and Assistant Agent in Charge of the NCIS European Field Office and was assigned postings in Italy, Beirut, London, and Norfolk, Virginia.
Mr. Scovel has a baccalaureate degree in Political Science from the University of San Diego. He completed graduate work in International Studies at Old Dominion University and graduated from the Naval Investigative Service Academy and the Navy and Marine Corps Intelligence Training Center Basic Intelligence School. He was awarded the Navy Meritorious Civilian Award in 1994, and the Defense Exceptional Civilian Service Award in 2001.
Barry Kopelson has been a Partner in growth[period]’s Transaction Advisory Services practice for over 10 years. Mr. Kopelson is recognized for his extensive experience in venture capital and management consulting in Aerospace & Defense, transaction advisory support, strategy, and market intelligence. Mr. Kopelson has significant experience in performing strategy and diligence exercises, and leverages this experience to help guide growth[period]’s growing transaction advisory support business.
Prior to joining growth[period], Mr. Kopelson was the founder and Managing Director of Kopelson Consulting. Kopelson Consulting possessed a platinum reputation in the aerospace, defense, and healthcare industries. Before founding Kopelson Consulting, Mr. Kopelson was a Senior Analyst at CSP Associates in Boston, a boutique consulting firm specializing in the aerospace and defense market. There he contributed to dozens of strategy and diligence exercises, and took a leading role in recurring agency studies and due diligence activities. His industry experience included strategic and financial acquisitions ranging in value from $10M to in excess of several billion. During his time at CSP he routinely worked on deals that covered half or more of the top ten defense deals of those years. His client interactions included major private equity and investment banking firms, defense primes, and mid- and small- sized financial and industrial concerns.
Mr. Kopelson also previously worked in venture capital for VCFA Group in New York and San Francisco. There he carried out evaluations and valuations of funds and firms ranging from startups to pre- and post- IPO companies, across fields from software to healthcare and biotechnology to civil aviation and robotics. Mr. Kopelson holds an M.A. in International Security Policy from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs.
John McEleny joined growth[period] in June 2007. Mr. McEleny is widely recognized for his expertise in federal law enforcement matters, physical security, and business development.
Prior to joining growth[period], Mr. McEleny acted as an independent subject matter expert for large defense contractors, including Lockheed Martin and Raytheon. On behalf of Lockheed, Mr. McEleny served as the deputy program manager for the Security Managers Working Group (SMWG) at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Office of Security; assisting in the supervision of a team of 40+ persons, all experts in their individual fields; physical security, personnel security, information security, and counterintelligence.
Previously, Mr. McEleny served for ten years at the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS), a worldwide criminal investigation, counterintelligence and force protection agency providing services to the 400,000+ members of the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps – wherever they are in the world. As the Deputy Director of that agency, he oversaw all four major program areas – counterintelligence, counterterrorism, criminal investigations and inspections/strategic planning. Further, during Mr. McEleny’s tenure, he helped plan and orchestrate an overhaul of the agency following a nationally publicized scandal that occurred in 1992, prior to his arrival.
Before moving to NCIS, Mr. McEleny served the United States Secret Service (USSS) for more than two decades. During the last two years of his career with USSS, he served as Deputy Assistant Director, Office of Investigations. In this capacity, Mr. McEleny supervised field offices around the world, supporting over 1200 Secret Service agents globally.
Prior to being named Deputy Assistant Director, Mr. McEleny served as Assistant Agent in Charge, Vice Presidential Protective Division. As Assistant Agent in Charge, he was responsible for residence and vice presidential family protective details and supervising USSS personnel in coordinating all logistics and equipment/personnel support for travel of the Vice President and family. He routinely provided personal protection to the Vice President during domestic and foreign travels.
Earlier in Mr. McEleny’s career with the US Secret Service, he served with the Secret Service’s Counterfeit Division, the San Francisco Field Office, Former President Ford’s Protective Division, Presidential Protective Division, and the Los Angeles Field Office. Mr. McEleny received “outstanding” evaluation ratings from the USSS during each of these assignments.
Mr. McEleny holds a BA in Criminology from California State University, Long Beach. He resides Jacksonville, Florida with his family.
Mr. Smith joins growth[period] after a distinguished career of nearly three decades within the national security and defense industries. His twenty-six year tenure at General Dynamics Information Technology was marked with a number of successes that would propel him through the senior ranks of management and culminate in his induction as Vice President. During this time, Mr. Smith gained expertise in engineering, program management, sales, and marketing in the telecom and communication services markets, and he managed intelligence community, Department of Defense, and commercial multi-million dollar programs around the world. During the final five years of his career at GDIT, Mr. Smith instituted what would eventually prove to be a wildly successful capture management program within the Intelligence Solutions Division. He implemented capture management as a formal discipline within the division and managed a staff of twelve capture managers. This Capture Management Program would ultimately yield a proposal win rate of 77.6% and a capture rate of 85.7%. He was the Capture Manager for several notable awards, including the NGA New Campus East, the Defense Information Infrastructure, and the DCGS. Before joining General Dynamics, Mr. Smith was a lead telecommunications engineer for TRW. He studied electrical engineering at the Pennsylvania State University, and received his graduate degree in the subject from the University of Southern California.
Sharon Virts is a Principal with growth[period]’s Federal, Aerospace and Defense Practice. Sharon is the Founder of FCi Federal, a leading government services contractor, commanding nearly 90% of the Federal Immigration market. Under her leadership, FCi Federal experienced stellar growth – from 35 employees and $1.5 million in revenue in 2007, to nearly 5,000 employees and nearly $300 million in revenue when she sold the company in 2017. Before its sale, FCi Federal was named to INC Magazine’s Inc. 500/5000 list six consecutive times. Sharon worked in business development for Computer Sciences Corporation and in marketing for Prentice Hall Publishing. She began her career as a Junior Fellow at the Department of Housing and Urban Development and is an alumnus of the University of Virginia.
Sharon has received numerous awards and honors throughout her professional career. In 2017, she was named to the Washington Business Journal’s Power 100 and recognized as one of the top five female founders and owners of the largest companies in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. She received two gold Stevie Awards for Women of the Year and Female Entrepreneur of the Year in Business Services.
Sharon is active in the Loudoun community serving as Vice Chairman of the Northern Virginia Regional Council for the Virginia Initiative for Growth & Opportunity; Past Chairman of the Loudoun Economic Development Advisory Commission; Board Director of the INOVA Loudoun Hospital Foundation; President and Trustee of the Loudoun Museum and a member of 100WomenStrong. She is an inaugural member of WE Capital, a venture capital group investing in women led businesses with social impact missions. She is a Loudoun County native, a mother, and a grandmother. She and her husband, Scott Miller, bought and restored the Historic Selma Mansion where they currently reside with their Labrador Retrievers.
David C. Smydo is currently the Chief Executive Officer of Sokolin LLC, which is a leading luxury retailer and direct marketer of fine and rare wine to high net worth individuals internationally. Sokolin currently operates in 30 countries and has offices in New York, Switzerland and France. At Sokolin, David has led the business through a period of significant growth and has overseen the transformation of a traditional wine store into a world-class industry leader. He is responsible for developing and executing the company’s strategic management initiatives, and directs the management team. He has also directed the enterprises’ first initiatives into e-commerce, and managed the successful design and implementation of a proprietary, technology-based information system encompassing and integrating every business segment within the company. He has successfully directed and executed five M&A deals during his tenure.
In addition to his duties at Sokolin LLC, David has a taken on additional time limited roles as the Managing Director of seven separate land investment companies that specialize in locating strategic properties and investing in land with valuable oil, gas and mineral rights within the United States.
Previously, David worked for Internet Venture Works, a startup high technology company funded by a leading Private Equity company based in Boston, Massachusetts. He was also the Founding and Senior Managing Partner of SD Acquisition Group, a company specializing in strategic acquisitions of undervalued enterprises in basic industries, including metals and mining and confectionery products.
David holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Washington and Jefferson College in Pennsylvania. David has previously been a participant of the Yale School of Management Chief Executive Leadership Institute’s CEO Summits. David also currently holds several advisory positions in various industries from luxury fashion to manufacturing.
Mr. Brown joins growth[period] after a distinguished career in law enforcement and public service. With three decades of experience across two federal law enforcement agencies he has operational and management experience in complex criminal investigations, executive protection operations, protective intelligence, inspections and audits, crisis/consequence management, and continuity of operations. He brings unparalleled insight and expertise to the team at growth[period].
Mr. Brown’s tenure in government culminated in 2009 with his retirement from his position as Director of the Federal Air Marshals and Assistant Administrator for Law Enforcement at the Transportation Security Administration. During his tenure with the Agency he was twice acknowledged for his unique accomplishments; in 2008 he was awarded both the DHS Silver Medal Award and the TSA John W. Magaw Values Award. In addition, prior to serving as Director, he served three years as Chief of Staff of the Federal Air Marshal Service.
Formerly, Mr. Brown was a special agent with the United States Secret Service. Recognized as a strong leader, he retired from that Agency as the Assistant Director and Chief Financial Officer for the Office of Administration. During his roughly 25 years with the agency he also served as Deputy Assistant Director for Operations in the Office of Protective Research, Special Agent-in-Charge and Deputy Special Agent in Charge in the Financial Crimes Division, Special Agent-in-Charge in the Asset Forfeiture Division, and Deputy Inspector-in-Charge for the Office of Inspection.
Subsequent to his time at USSS, and before joining the TSA, Mr. Brown worked in the private sector where he held several senior executive positions at Vance International, an investigation and security-consulting firm.
Mr. Brown is also a former Marine who served with distinction in Vietnam, where he received several commendations, including the Purple Heart. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia.
Dr. Edward H. Bersoff is the Chairman of growth[period], a business development consulting firm headquartered in Northern Virginia. As Chairman, he provides top-down guidance and direction to the company’s leadership on strategic initiatives. Dr. Bersoff also plays an active role in the closing of strategic new business and the hiring of the firm’s senior executives. In addition, he is the Chairman and founder of Parabilis, LLC a business finance company located in Northern Virginia. He is also the Chairman of Greenwich Associates, LLC, a business advisory firm.
He was formerly the Chairman and CEO of ATS Corporation (NYSE-AMEX: ATSC), an information technology company that was acquired in 2012. Prior to his role at ATSC, Dr. Bersoff was Chairman, President and CEO of BTG, Inc., a NASDAQ-listed information technology firm he founded in 1982. In November 2001 BTG was acquired by the Titan Corporation, a NYSE listed company. Dr. Bersoff was elected to the Board of Titan in 2002. Titan was later sold to L-3 Communications.
Dr. Bersoff is currently Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Marymount University in Virginia, and Virginia529 College Savings Plan, and is a board member of several other public and private companies. He previously served on the board of New York University, Virginia Commonwealth University, Holy Cross Hospital in Maryland, the INOVA Health System, and the American Electronics Association.
Dr. Bersoff holds A.B., M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in mathematics from New York University and is a graduate of the Harvard Business School’s Owner/President Management Program. Dr. Bersoff was an officer in the U.S. Army and has taught mathematics at New York University, Northeastern and Boston Universities in Massachusetts, and American University in Washington, D.C.
- Washington, DC