April 13, 2006

Drafting a Winning Proposal: Tips for Preparing Proposals that Can (1) Win and (2) Withstand a Protest

This event has already occurred.
Venable LLP, 575 7th Street, N.W.,
Washington, DC

On April 13, 2006, NOVA NCMA and Venable will present a panel discussion concerning strategies for drafting a winning proposal.  As part of this seminar, panel members will discuss what they believe source evaluation boards and source selection authorities look for in a proposal.  In addition, the panel will discuss recent Government Accountability Office (GAO) and Court of Federal Claims (COFC) decisions that highlight mistakes or omissions by offerors that resulted in adverse protest decisions.  The panel will pay particular attention to the GAO's and COFC's recent decisions concerning Organizational Conflicts of Interest.  Finally, the panel will close its remarks with a summary of a number of "best practices" concerning proposal preparation.


Melissa D. Rider
Deputy Director
U.S. Army Contracting Agency

Melissa D. Rider is the Deputy Director of the Army Contracting Agency (ACA), which provides base operations and common-use information technology contracting support to virtually every Army MACOM and field operating agency, worldwide.  In her current position, Ms. Rider reviews source selection strategies for the ACA and the Army.  Over the years, Ms. Rider has held various positions throughout the Department of Defense and has served as a Contracting Officer and Source Selection Authority as well as a member of numerous Source Evaluation Boards, including leading contracting, pricing and past performance review teams.  She has also led both pre-solicitation conferences and post-award debriefings.

Ms. Rider has also participated in numerous reinvention activities.  She was the principal author of the 1993 AFFARS Appendices AA and BB on source selection policy and served as the Team Leader of the FAR Part 15 Rewrite, Contract Award implementation team for the Federal Acquisition Streamlining Act of 1994 Contract Award and Defense Unique FASA Implementation Teams in 1994 and 1995.  She was a member of the DoD Electronic Commerce/Electronic Data Interchange in Contracting Process Action Team in 1993.  She was detailed to the Office of Federal Procurement Policy from January-April, 1994, working as a member of the past performance team, assisting federal procurement executives to understand how to use past performance as a major source selection criterion. 

She is currently a member of the Air Force and DoD acquisition corps and is Level III certified in contracting.  She is also National Contract Management Association Fellow, a Certified Associate Contracts Manager, and a Certified Professional Contracts Manager.  She was selected as Outstanding Fellow in July 2001, and was awarded the Berger award for outstanding chapter leadership in December 2001.

Ann Marie Connery

Ms. Connery is currently a consultant to the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) Acquisition Center of Excellence (ACE) where she conducts training for the NRO and mission partners on acquisition topics to include:  source-selection processes from acquisition planning through preparing evaluation documentation, evaluating proposals, and source-selection decision processes.  She also trains on contract award determinations under sole-source and negotiated procurement processes, contract administration topics, and contract incentive programs.  Ms. Connery was previously a Contracting Officer for the Air Force and the NRO, awarding and managing contracts for services, research and development, and space systems.

Paul A. Debolt
Venable LLP

Mr. Debolt assists corporations and individuals on all issues that arise out of doing business with the federal government, including civil fraud issues.  He works on the competitive bid process, defending or prosecuting bid protests, issues advice concerning compliance with government regulations and laws during the performance of a contract, and helps to resolve disputes and claims during contract performance or as a result of contract termination.

Terry L. Elling
Of Counsel
Venable LLP

Mr. Elling provides clients with advice and representation across the spectrum of traditional government contract issues, including bid protests, the preparation and litigation of claims against the government, and prime contractor-subcontractor disputes.  Mr. Elling also has extensive experience and extends advice and representation in a myriad of related areas, including compliance with government ethics laws, procurement fraud, export controls and foreign military sales, and government information law.