The Alliance for US-International Business (AUSIB) hosted its annual Federal CIO conference on Capitol Hill on April 29, 2019. Keynote speakers included Congressman Steve Chabot, Ranking Member of the House Small Business Committee, and Mr. Sanjay Puri, Chairman of AUSIB.
CIOs, Deputies and Directors across Federal agencies, including the U.S. Departments of Justice, Energy, Homeland Security, and Veterans Affairs, participated in the event. Small and medium-size companies filled the audience.
Puri offered opening remarks and commended Congressman Chabot for working to improve conditions for small businesses. “Since first being elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1994, you have worked to open access to loans, credit and capital, to provide tax relief and reduce paperwork. You have helped smaller federal contractors get paid more quickly. And you are tireless in your efforts to open the Federal marketplace to minority enterprises,” Puri said of Chabot.
Having served as Chairman and now as top Republican on the Small Business Committee, Chabot has advocated for America’s entrepreneurs, who fuel the engine of job creation. “Small businesses are the backbone of the U.S. economy,” Chabot said, thanking Puri for bringing entrepreneurs and small businesses together with CIOs to talk about ways to improve access to the Federal marketplace. As Chabot has said, there is nothing “small” about small businesses, and government needs to do all it can to support them.
Puri agreed, stating that the audience was comprised of small and medium size businesses that are anxious to engage with Federal agencies, if given the opportunity. “I am an entrepreneur, too,” Puri said. “I have successfully created and exited information technology companies, and competed as a Federal contractor for the past 30 years. I know firsthand of the challenges my colleagues face and that’s why I recently started ACEL360 – to help entrepreneurs compete and succeed in the Federal marketplace. It is imperative that we exchange ideas and express concerns about how we can increase accessibility for small and medium size businesses, and minority owned enterprises.”
During a Q&A, moderated by Puri, the CIO panel offered commitment, insight and support for small and medium size businesses – the drivers of American innovation.