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Meet our Board of Advisors

Board of Advisors: Jim Benbow

Jim Benbow

Jim Benbow is Chief Executive Officer of DCS Corporation, where he also serves on the Board of Directors. DCS is a privately-held, employee-owned engineering and technical services firm. With nearly 1,900 employee-owners operating from 22 U.S. locations nationwide, DCS works to advance complex technologies and their innovative application for the national security sector. Core services encompass the research, development, test and evaluation of advanced systems and platforms. Before being named CEO in 2016, Jim served since 2004 as Chief Business Development Officer for DCS, responsible for driving organic growth across the enterprise. In this capacity, he established the first centralized business development organization and integrated growth strategy for the company. Prior to rejoining DCS in 2004, Jim served in senior business development capacities for Titan Corporation, Averstar, Inc., Intermetrics, Inc., and Horizons Technology, Inc. Jim began his career with DCS as an Optical Engineer supporting the integration of state-of-the-art electro-optical systems on a variety of platforms. He holds a Bachelor of Science in optical engineering from the University of Rochester.

Board of Advisors: Tom Ferrando

Tom Ferrando

Tom Ferrando has over 35 years of technology leadership experience working with the U.S. government to design, build, and operate world class technology solutions. Tom is currently a member of the Board of Directors for CherryRoad Technologies, GovCIO, and PMCG. He also serves as a member of the advisory board for Seton Hall University’s Buccino Center Leadership Council. Previously, Tom served as President of CherryRoad Technologies from 2000 until 2008, when he founded and became CEO of CRGT, a spinoff of CherryRoad. Under his leadership, CRGT grew into a 2,000-person company supporting multiple federal and defense agencies, and in 2014 Tom led the sale of CRGT to Bridge Growth Partners. Prior to working with CherryRoad and CRGT, Tom was General Manager of Operations and Systems at a major financial services firm, where he led technology research and development among other critical responsibilities. He earned a Bachelor of Science in computer science from Seton Hall University and holds a Master of Science in management from the Stevens Institute of Technology.

Board of Advisors: Melissa Unemori Hampe

Melissa Unemori Hampe

Melissa Unemori Hampe is a Partner with Skog Rasmussen LLC on the Island of Maui, Hawai’i. Melissa specializes in federal government relations and grants, working in both arenas through public, private, and nonprofit sector positions. She spent 11 years on Capitol Hill working for the late Congresswoman Patsy Mink (D-HI), with a Senate policy leadership committee, and for the late Senator Dan Akaka (D-HI). She advocated for mentoring and youth development at the national nonprofit MENTOR: National Mentoring Partnership. She then joined D.C. firm McAllister & Quinn in 2008, serving in various positions including Chief Operating Officer, and continues to consult with the firm on various clients while at Skog Rasmussen LLC. Melissa has also worked on more than 125 federal, foundation, and corporate grant projects, providing a variety of services including grant prospecting and strategy, project management, coaching, writing, reviewing, editing, and submission support. Her clients have included national, regional, and local nonprofits; academic researchers at higher education institutions; hospitals and academic medical centers; for profit entities; and multi-sector collaborations. Melissa received a Bachelor of Science from Cornell University and an MBA from the Yale School of Management.

Board of Advisors: Retired Vice Admiral Thomas Moore

Thomas Moore

Retired U.S. Navy Vice Admiral Thomas Moore is a Corporate Vice President of Customer Affairs at HII, where he is responsible for outreach to executive branch principals and the fleet for the Mission Technologies Division portfolio. He was named to the position in November 2021 and works in HII’s Washington, D.C. office. Prior to joining HII, Tom served 39 years in the United States Navy, retiring as a Vice Admiral. During his last four years, he served as the Commander of the Naval Sea Systems Command, where he managed an 83,000 member workforce and an annual budget of $55 billion in the design, construction, and lifecycle management of the Navy’s ships, submarines, and combat systems. Previously, Tom was the Program Executive Officer for Aircraft Carriers, where he led the Navy’s largest acquisition program in the design and construction of the Navy’s FORD Class Carriers. Tom is a 1981 graduate of the United States Naval Academy and holds a master’s degree in information systems from The George Washington University, as well as a master’s degree and engineer’s degree in nuclear engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Board of Advisors: Kate Troendle

Kate Troendle

Kate Troendle is a Managing Director at KippsDeSanto & Co., a wholly owned subsidiary of Capital One. Kate has approximately 15 years of experience providing transaction advisory services to companies within the aerospace, defense, government, and technology sectors. Her expertise spans domestic and cross-border sell-side and buy-side merger and acquisition (M&A) transactions, leveraged buyouts, debt and equity capital raises, fairness opinions, and corporate divestitures for public and private companies and financial sponsors. Prior to working at KippsDeSanto, Kate was a Vice President at Bluestone Capital Partners, where she focused on transaction execution for companies operating within the aerospace, defense, and government services industries. Kate began her investment banking career within Stifel’s Aerospace, Defense & Government Services Group, where she supported a variety of transactions related to M&A and debt as well as equity capital raises via both public and private offerings. Kate received a Bachelor of Science in political science and economics from Vanderbilt University and an MBA from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business.

Board of Advisors: Jim Benbow

Jim Benbow

Jim Benbow is Chief Executive Officer of DCS Corporation, where he also serves on the Board of Directors. DCS is a privately-held, employee-owned engineering and technical services firm. With nearly 1,900 employee-owners operating from 22 U.S. locations nationwide, DCS works to advance complex technologies and their innovative application for the national security sector. Core services encompass the research, development, test and evaluation of advanced systems and platforms. Before being named CEO in 2016, Jim served since 2004 as Chief Business Development Officer for DCS, responsible for driving organic growth across the enterprise. In this capacity, he established the first centralized business development organization and integrated growth strategy for the company. Prior to rejoining DCS in 2004, Jim served in senior business development capacities for Titan Corporation, Averstar, Inc., Intermetrics, Inc., and Horizons Technology, Inc. Jim began his career with DCS as an Optical Engineer supporting the integration of state-of-the-art electro-optical systems on a variety of platforms. He holds a Bachelor of Science in optical engineering from the University of Rochester.

Board of Advisors: Tom Ferrando

Tom Ferrando

Tom Ferrando has over 35 years of technology leadership experience working with the U.S. government to design, build, and operate world class technology solutions. Tom is currently a member of the Board of Directors for CherryRoad Technologies, GovCIO, and PMCG. He also serves as a member of the advisory board for Seton Hall University’s Buccino Center Leadership Council. Previously, Tom served as President of CherryRoad Technologies from 2000 until 2008, when he founded and became CEO of CRGT, a spinoff of CherryRoad. Under his leadership, CRGT grew into a 2,000-person company supporting multiple federal and defense agencies, and in 2014 Tom led the sale of CRGT to Bridge Growth Partners. Prior to working with CherryRoad and CRGT, Tom was General Manager of Operations and Systems at a major financial services firm, where he led technology research and development among other critical responsibilities. He earned a Bachelor of Science in computer science from Seton Hall University and holds a Master of Science in management from the Stevens Institute of Technology.

Board of Advisors: Melissa Unemori Hampe

Melissa Unemori Hampe

Melissa Unemori Hampe is a Partner with Skog Rasmussen LLC on the Island of Maui, Hawai’i. Melissa specializes in federal government relations and grants, working in both arenas through public, private, and nonprofit sector positions. She spent 11 years on Capitol Hill working for the late Congresswoman Patsy Mink (D-HI), with a Senate policy leadership committee, and for the late Senator Dan Akaka (D-HI). She advocated for mentoring and youth development at the national nonprofit MENTOR: National Mentoring Partnership. She then joined D.C. firm McAllister & Quinn in 2008, serving in various positions including Chief Operating Officer, and continues to consult with the firm on various clients while at Skog Rasmussen LLC. Melissa has also worked on more than 125 federal, foundation, and corporate grant projects, providing a variety of services including grant prospecting and strategy, project management, coaching, writing, reviewing, editing, and submission support. Her clients have included national, regional, and local nonprofits; academic researchers at higher education institutions; hospitals and academic medical centers; for profit entities; and multi-sector collaborations. Melissa received a Bachelor of Science from Cornell University and an MBA from the Yale School of Management.

Board of Advisors: Retired Vice Admiral Thomas Moore

Thomas Moore

Retired U.S. Navy Vice Admiral Thomas Moore is a Corporate Vice President of Customer Affairs at HII, where he is responsible for outreach to executive branch principals and the fleet for the Mission Technologies Division portfolio. He was named to the position in November 2021 and works in HII’s Washington, D.C. office. Prior to joining HII, Tom served 39 years in the United States Navy, retiring as a Vice Admiral. During his last four years, he served as the Commander of the Naval Sea Systems Command, where he managed an 83,000 member workforce and an annual budget of $55 billion in the design, construction, and lifecycle management of the Navy’s ships, submarines, and combat systems. Previously, Tom was the Program Executive Officer for Aircraft Carriers, where he led the Navy’s largest acquisition program in the design and construction of the Navy’s FORD Class Carriers. Tom is a 1981 graduate of the United States Naval Academy and holds a master’s degree in information systems from The George Washington University, as well as a master’s degree and engineer’s degree in nuclear engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Board of Advisors: Kate Troendle

Kate Troendle

Kate Troendle is a Managing Director at KippsDeSanto & Co., a wholly owned subsidiary of Capital One. Kate has approximately 15 years of experience providing transaction advisory services to companies within the aerospace, defense, government, and technology sectors. Her expertise spans domestic and cross-border sell-side and buy-side merger and acquisition (M&A) transactions, leveraged buyouts, debt and equity capital raises, fairness opinions, and corporate divestitures for public and private companies and financial sponsors. Prior to working at KippsDeSanto, Kate was a Vice President at Bluestone Capital Partners, where she focused on transaction execution for companies operating within the aerospace, defense, and government services industries. Kate began her investment banking career within Stifel’s Aerospace, Defense & Government Services Group, where she supported a variety of transactions related to M&A and debt as well as equity capital raises via both public and private offerings. Kate received a Bachelor of Science in political science and economics from Vanderbilt University and an MBA from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business.