GovConNet Council

The GovConNet Council is formed by invitation only and is comprised of Government Contracting industry experts who develop GovConNet programs, support VIP instruction, and provide industry specific advocacy. The Council advises the Board of Directors of the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce on its government contracting initiatives. The following individuals are the members of the GovConNet Council:

Jackie Asencio, President & CEO, C2 Essentials, Inc.
Phone: (703) 444-0096
Fax: (703) 433-9014

Jackie Asencio is President and CEO of C2 Essentials, Inc., one of the region’s leading human capital management service providers. With more than 27 years experience, Ms. Asencio has been a major influence in helping small government contractors grow and compete in the federal market place. As a seasoned trainer and coach, Ms. Asencio works closely with business owners ensuring their human capital management strategies are aligned to their business goals. She has extensive experience of full life cycle recruiting, talent management, succession planning, career development, reward and recognition strategies, performance management, regulatory compliance, compensation, benefits, risk management, and outplacement services. Prior to founding C2 Portfolio, Ms. Asencio provided human capital management support to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Department of State, Department of Housing and Urban Development, Environmental Protection Agency, National Science Foundation, Department of Defense, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of the Treasury Overseas Private Investment Corporation, and the World Bank Group.

Joseph Buyalos, Partner, The Insurance Exchange, Inc. (TIE)
Phone: 240-876-3566
Fax: 301-330-1270

Joseph Buyalos is a Partner with The Insurance Exchange. He leads the firms Employee Benefits practice and in his 16 years with the firm has tremendous experience in designing and negotiating ultra competitive fringe benefit programs for his many government contractor clients ranging from employers with around 50 employees up to 5,000 employees worldwide including several war risk countries. In addition to government contractors, Buyalos also has several large technology, association, and non-profit clients. He is also the driving force behind the GovConNet Benefits Survey which will give government contractors throughout the region and the country access to real-time high quality benefits benchmarking data at no cost to Survey participants.

Christopher Craig, President & Chief Operating Officer, Unanet Technologies
Phone: (703) 964-2149

In his role as President and Chief Operating Officer, Christopher Craig is responsible for all aspects of Unanet operations and performance. Under his leadership, Unanet has developed into the leading provider of cloud computing business management software for project based organizations. Since joining Unanet in 2000, Mr. Craig has contributed to Unanet’s growth through a variety of roles related to product management, professional services, customer account management, marketing, and business development. He has helped build the customer base to over 900 organizations, and revenue has increased 20% year over year for the last nine years. Mr. Craig has over 15 years of experience in the technology arena. Prior to Unanet, he worked in project-based services organizations, which helped Unanet become laser-focused on what these organizations need from a software solution. Mr. Craig has a M.S. in Information Systems and B.S in Systems Engineering from The University of Virginia.

Larry Davis, Managing Partner, Aronson Capital Partners
Phone: (301) 231-6200
Fax: (301) 222-8230

Larry Davis is Managing Partner of Aronson Capital Partners. Larry leads the firms M&A advisory practice, which is focused on the Federal IT sector. He has over 20 years of M&A and corporate finance experience in the federal sector having completed over 25 transactions. As a result of his unique industry experience, he serves as a strategic advisor to middle-market companies assisting them in developing strategies to enhance shareholder value.

Mark Gossart, Officer, Aronson & Company
Phone: (301) 231-6200
Fax: (301) 222-8240

Mark Gossart, CPA, is an Officer in the Firm’s Tax Services Group. Mark specializes in income taxation, tax research and planning at the federal and state levels, and tax compliance, including the preparation and review of federal and state tax returns for a wide variety of individuals and business entities.

Alexandra "Lexy" Kessler, Partner, Aronson LLC
Phone: (301) 231-6200
Fax: (301) 222-8240

Alexandra B. Kessler, CPA leads Aronson & Company’s Government and Technology Services group. Her clients include commercial and government contractors, and technology and government contracting service organizations. She specializes in assurance, tax, consulting services, government cost principles and regulations, due diligence as it relates to merger and acquisition activity, and assisting companies develop and create strategic planning objectives.

Pamela Mazza, Managing Partner, PilieroMazza PLLC
Phone: (202) 857-1000
Fax: (202) 857-0200

Pamela J. Mazza, managing partner at PilieroMazza PLLC, practices in the areas of corporate counseling, government contracts, government relations, Native American law and association law. Within her government contracts practice, Mazza advises on all aspects of government contracting, with a specialty in issues pertaining to small and disadvantaged businesses. She counsels clients on a variety of corporate issues including corporate formation and restructuring, shareholder agreements, and trade secrets protection. Mazza also represents trade associations, coalitions and corporations before Congress and the Administration. She sits on the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Directors and acts as General Counsel to the Chamber.

Frank Merendino, SVP & Team Leader, Sandy Spring Bank Government Contractor Lending Group
Phone: (703) 255-4632
Fax: (703) 319-7912

Frank Merendino has more than 30 years of commercial banking experience, including the last 12 years specializing in the Government Contracting (GC) Industry. As Team Leader for Sandy Spring Bank’s Government Contractor Lending Group, Frank is directly responsible for achieving the Bank’s objective to significantly grow this specialized business line. He is also responsible for the management of the Bank’s 6-person Government Contractor Lending Group.

Frank holds a BA in Business Administration with honors from Frostburg University.

Currently, Frank serves as a member of the GovConNet Council of the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce, is an active member of the Professional Services Council, the Association of Corporate Growth and the Greater Washington Government Contractor Awards. Frank is a past Vice President and Treasurer of the Corvette Club of America and is an active current member.

Timothy K. O'Connor, Senior Vice President, AOC Key Solutions, Inc.
Phone : (703) 307-4841
Fax : (703) 953-3877
Email :

Mr. O'Connor has more than 30 years of experience in business development, proposal development, sales and marketing in the global telecommunications and information technology industries. He has played a leadership role on multiple wins (cumulative value: >$10 billion) for KSI clients in various roles including proposal manager, telecommunications/IT subject matter expert, technical writer, and past performance lead. Tim provides business development and marketing leadership for KSI and also serves as client engagement director. Tim combines strong proposal skills with technical expertise in backbone network, voice, and data telecommunications. In the telecommunications sector, he has managed groups with revenues exceeding $600 million, and has led large-scale international efforts in Europe, Asia, Latin America, and Canada. 

Christopher Carpenito, CPA, HESS Construction Phone: (240) 599-4760
Fax: (301) 670-9009

Kwesi Rogers, President, Federal National Commercial Credit
Phone: 301) 961-6450
Fax: (301) 961-6460

Kwesi Rogers joined Federal National Commercial Credit as Sales Director when it opened its doors in 1992. In January of 2006, Mr. Rogers was promoted to the position of President. Mr. Rogers holds a BA from the University of the District of Columbia and an MBA from George Mason University. He is an owner and a Director of Federal National Commercial Credit.

Keith Romanowski, Senior Manager, WATKINS MEEGAN
Phone: (703) 847-4429
Fax: (703) 761-4815

Keith Romanowski, Senior Manager, WATKINS MEEGAN has more than 19 years of experience in the Government Contracting sector. He has handled SEC reporting and FAR, CAS, and GAAP compliance. Keith provides consulting to companies that use Deltek GCS Premier and Deltek Time & Expense. Keith also advises clients on financial and operational issues, including indirect rate structures, general ledger chart of accounts, account reconciliations, monthly and year end closings, and financial statement reporting. Keith is a graduate of the University of Wyoming with a B.S. in Accounting.

Michael J. Schrier, Counsel, Jackson Kelly PLLC
Phone: (202) 973-0213

Michael J. Schrier serves as Counsel in Jackson Kelly PLLC’s Washington, D.C., office where he focuses his practice in the areas of government contracts, commercial litigation and labor and employment. Mr. Schrier has experience representing government contractors in Contract Disputes Act, Miller Act, Little Miller Act and breach of contract claims in federal and state trial courts, as well as advising government contractors on Federal Acquisition Regulations, facilities and security clearances, False Claims Act, Buy American Act, Davis-Bacon Act, Service Contract Act and debarment/suspension matters.

Jackson Kelly PLLC is a national law firm representing leading global corporations, national companies, entrepreneurs and individuals in areas of law such as government contracts, environmental, business, labor and employment, federal and state workers’ compensation, civil litigation and occupational safety and health. The firm has offices in the District of Columbia, Colorado, Indiana, Kentucky, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

Ann M. Sullivan, Consultant, WIPP Government Relations, Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP)
Phone: (202) 626-8528
Fax: (202) 872-8543

Ann Sullivan is the President of Madison Services Group, Inc. (MSGI), a woman-owned company that provides government relations and business development services to corporate and non-profit clients. She brings many years of government relations experience in the United States Senate and the House of Representatives, serving in key advisory roles. Ms. Sullivan works with the United States Congress, Executive Office, and government agencies to garner national attention for clients' issues. Her expertise includes business development programs, government procurement, healthcare, export development, and tax issues affecting small businesses.

She currently represents the largest national association of women business owners and women in business, Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP), as well as the national voice for microbusiness, the Association for Enterprise Opportunity (AEO). MSGI specializes in outreach to the small business community with an emphasis on women-owned and minority businesses.

Ms. Sullivan also serves on the James Madison University College of Integrated Science and Technology Executive Advisory Council. In 2010, she received the Enterprising Women of the Year Award from Enterprising Women Magazine.

DeVance Walker Jr., Manager, Small and Minority Business Services, Montgomery County Department of Economic Development
Phone: (240) 777-2010
Fax: (240) 777-2001

DeVance Walker is the Manager of Small and Minority Business Services for the Montgomery County Department of Economic Development. Several of his initiatives, such as the Business Mentorship Program and the Procurement Fair, have received national recognition. He develops programs, coordinates business conferences and seminars and serves as a contract administrator for the County government. Recently, he served as the manager for the County’s acclaimed Business Resource Center. During his twenty years with the County, he has received more than 100 business and community service awards.

Christine Williamson, Member, Government Contractors & Technology Group, WATKINS MEEGAN
Phone: (703) 761-4848
Fax: (703) 761-4815

Christine Williamson serves as a Member of the Government Contracting and Technology Industry Group. From her experience in working on engagements involving the closing and management of acquired financial institutions, she has been able to adapt to various organizational sizes and levels of accounting personnel. She has performed financial statement audits, reviews, and compilations for construction, professional services firms, retail, and not-for-profit clients.

John A. Zuccaro, Manager, Business Controls, Lockheed Martin Information Systems & Global Solutions (IS&GS)
Phone: (301) 240-6202
Fax: (301) 240-7341

John A. Zuccaro was recently selected as Manager, Business Controls for Lockheed Martin Information Systems & Global Solutions (IS&GS) in Gaithersburg, MD. He is responsible for business operations/administration of all IS&GS facilities in the Maryland/Washington DC metro area.

Mr. Zucaro has over thirty years progressively responsible procurement management experience in the federal prime contractor sector/market. He has managed Purchasing and Procurement Operations, Subcontracts, Contract Compliance and Small Business Subcontracting programs. He has earned lifetime accreditation as a “Certified Purchasing Manager” from the Institute of Supply Chain Management. Prior to Lockheed Martin, he was employed by GTE Government Systems, Computer Sciences Corporation, Microwave Associates and Fairchild Industries.

Mr. Zuccaro provided the inspiration for the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce Veteran Institute for Procurement (VIP), the country’s first-ever program to train veteran small business owners to succeed in the federal contracting market. Among his community activities, he sits on the Montgomery County Chamber Community Foundation board of directors.  


  • Georgette "Gigi" Godwin, President and CEO, Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce
    Phone: (301) 738-0015 x208
    Fax: (301) 738-8792

View Gigi's Bio.

  • Barbara Ashe, Executive Vice President, Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce
    Phone: (301) 738-0015
    Fax: (301) 738-8792

View Barbara's Bio.

  • Patty A. Brown, Director, Program Management, Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce
    Phone: (301) 738-0015
    Fax: (301) 738-8792