LAS VEGAS – EM officials met with representatives of tribal owned businesses during the recent Reservation Economic Summit (RES) 2019 to discuss how they can help the cleanup program accelerate the completion of work and move sites closer to their intended end-use faster.
EM officials met one on one with Indian Country businesses during the high level event, which brings together tribal leaders, members of Congress, federal agency representatives, state and local officials, and CEOs. The event is sponsored by the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development (NCAIED), which marks its 50th anniversary this year.
“EM’s participation in the summit included significant dialogue to develop a better common understanding as to how tribal owned businesses and Alaska Native corporations can support the EM end-state contracting initiative to accelerate cleanup work at DOE-EM sites,” EM Consolidated Business Center Acquisition Integration Lead Aaron Deckard said.
Deckard noted the importance of EM’s collaborations with Indian Country businesses, as several of EM’s cleanup sites are located near sovereign tribal nations and impact Indian lands and resources. He also highlighted recent contract awards to Indian Country businesses.
“It was particularly rewarding to participate in panel discussions and ‘matchmaking’ with tribal firms that have unique capabilities to both support the DOE-EM mission and benefit Indian Country,” he said.
Norbert Doyle, EM Deputy Assistant Secretary for Acquisition & Project Management, highlighted strategic subcontracting as the “sweet spot” — a way to enhance opportunities for small businesses — and stressed the importance of pre-solicitation and pre-proposal conferences.
EM Tribal Affairs Director Brandt A. Petrasek echoed Deckard’s sentiments.
“This was the fifth year that EM has participated in RES, and given the level of EM senior leadership engagement at RES 2019, including EM Assistant Secretary Anne White — the signal is clear that EM is serious about doing business with Indian Country and sees NCAIED and RES as an important link with continuing opportunity.”
During a keynote address at the summit, White emphasized the invaluable role of American Indian tribes in EM’s renewed focus on completing cleanup across the DOE complex.
EM and DOE officials participated in RES 2019 sessions that focused on contracting and procurement; federal contracting opportunities; doing business with oil, gas and utilities; clean energy; and energy infrastructure. Officials from multiple DOE offices attended, including Indian Energy Policy and Programs, Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization, Economic Impact and Diversity, Legacy Management, Loan Programs, and Fossil Energy.