About Us

Our Mission

The Alliance is a vibrant organization that empowers, provides resources to, and works side-by-side with veterans to promote and support them in establishing, maintaining and growing viable business enterprises.

The Alliance has helped thousands achieve financial rehabilitation through entrepreneurship. We recognize that veterans’ experience in the military prepares them to be smart, capable entrepreneurs. We help disabled veterans achieve the satisfaction, pride and independence that comes from running their own business.

Veterans come home with a strong sense of the value of discipline, hard work and leadership. They’ve worked in the most challenging circumstances imaginable and know they can accomplish anything with the right team.

We are here to be part of a veteran’s team as they build a new life through building a business.

We Empower Veterans

The USVBA is a vibrant organization that empowers, provides resources to, and works side-by-side with veterans to promote and support them in establishing, maintaining and growing viable business enterprises.

Our diverse, highly experienced veteran-led organization is made up of volunteers working within committees, chapters, advisory board and the corporate advisory board along with the national board of directors who govern and shape the future of the USVBA. Our contractors and staff are top notch, committed and passionate about managing the organization in a way that provides real value to our members. Thank you to each and everyone of you that are devoted to helping veteran owned businesses start, sustain or grow thereby providing purpose which helps the veteran, their family, the community and nation as a whole. Helping one another is an economic as well as moral imperative. We are a strong, tested, proven group that is anything but disabled.

We are twice as likely to be successful in business over other small businesses and we hire veterans at twice the rate. Our skills we learned while serving are tangible and that translates to reduced risk on the buyer’s end. We make up one out of every ten small businesses in this country and one out of every seven franchises yet we make up less than 1% of the population. Women veteran business owners are the fastest growing segment of any group. We contribute $6T in receipts and hire over 6B people. Our population is not shrinking-we are growing with over 2M veterans needing help in this space. Yes, in terms of population we are small but in terms of our contribution to the economy and this country-we are mighty!

We're the longest running organization whose sole focus has been on Veterans entrepreneurship. Our experience has made us a model for other states. We believe in the power of business innovation to help veterans achieve their full potential in life.

We Help Veterans Reach Success

With the combination of a diverse, accomplished, and passionate Board of Directors and professional staff enables the U.S. Veteran Business Alliance to implement its vision of honoring service and empowering success, we believe in the power of business innovation to help veterans achieve their full potential in life.
Beside the standard information any new business owner needs, the Alliance provides experienced U.S. Veteran business owners to act as mentors and consultants to the prospective fellow Veteran entrepreneur.

The Alliance will also develop a market place for older Veterans to sell their established, successful business to younger Veterans, giving them a leg up in the challenge of business ownership while preserving all the assets created by the original owner.
Our diverse, highly experienced veteran-led organization is made up of volunteers working within committees, chapters, advisory board and the corporate advisory board along with the national board of directors who govern and shape the future of the USVBA. Our contractors and staff are top notch, committed and passionate about managing the organization in a way that provides real value to our members. Thank you to each and everyone of you that are devoted to helping veteran owned businesses start, sustain or grow thereby providing purpose which helps the veteran, their family, the community and nation as a whole. Helping one another is an economic as well as moral imperative. We are a strong, tested, proven group that is anything but disabled.

We're the longest running organization whose sole focus has been on Veterans entrepreneurship. Our experience has made us a model for other states. We believe in the power of business innovation to help veterans achieve their full potential in life.

We Connect USVBA Contractors with Government Agencies and Commercial Contractors Looking to Purchase Products and Services

The USVBA supports veterans through mentorship, advocation, education, and promoting and navigating the joys and pitfalls of business ownership. The USVBA does this through state-of-the-art technologies, experienced personnel, strategic events aimed at improving business skills and connecting the veteran business owner to new business opportunities, local chapters nationwide, fundraising, data capture, and strong membership support.

We help U.S. veterans certify their business for DVBE contracts and, through our efforts, have helped raise the number of DVBE contracts as high as 4%.

Our History

In 1989, with the leadership of Senator Ralph Dills and Mr. John Lopez, an active member for the Association of Disabled Veterans (“ASDV”) and the Veterans of Foreign Wars (“VFW”), the California legislature determined that disabled veterans deserved special consideration on state contracts because they suffered permanent disabilities as a result of their service to our nation. This law offers veterans the opportunity to gain experience in business while sharing their expertise with the citizens of California.

The U.S. Veteran Business Alliance was formed in 1994 following the establishment of the DVBE Program. Its original mission was to assist California state agencies to meet the DVBE procurement goal, which is currently 3% annually. All California certified DVBEs (1,700+) are the constituency of the DBVA and are supported at minimal cost to the disabled veteran owners.

Annually, the State of California contracts billions of dollars for goods and services which helps California’s economy stay healthy, strong, and prosperous, and promotes business opportunities and participation for all of its citizenry.

Small businesses, including those owned and operated by veterans, are instrumental to the good health of the State’s economy and a major source of new jobs.

U.S. Veteran Business Alliance

Honoring Service. Empowering Success.

Our Vision

As a national entity we aim to provide support in particular to the Service U.S. Veteran community such that Veterans from Vietnam to our current conflicts can become self-sufficient financially through entrepreneurship and as such achieve the true American Dream they deserve.

We believe that service Veterans can best raise our financial independence through entrepreneurship and company ownership and aim to achieve our mission through a number of specific initiatives.

Our Primary Focus

Provide the Veteran with a sense of purpose and community igniting self-worth and economic growth

Connect procurement professionals to qualified disabled Veteran businesses

Produce qualified, business-ready disabled Veteran owned companies

Educate Veterans about VA disability ratings and disabled Veteran business certification benefits

Reduce national social costs through self-employment and business ownership

Assist Veterans to navigate the steps required for success

Make the legislative landscape more favorable for disabled Veteran owned enterprises

Reduce barriers to entry

Why We're Different

Our diverse, highly experienced Veteran-led organization is made up of volunteers working within committees, chapters, advisory board and the corporate advisory board along with the national board of directors who govern and shape the future of the USVBA.

Peer-peer Mentorship-We speak the same language and can be frank with one another in a way that is hard to duplicate. This is very powerful.

The USVBA is member driven but backed by powerful Fortune 500 companies Non-federally funded

Capable of matching individual Veterans to appropriate mentors

Diverse, Veteran-led organization representing Vietnam through current eras

Veteran-led-we understand the needs and are cut from similar cloths

20-years of experience as an organization and a long list of accomplishments

USVBA Leadership

Marty Keller

Executive Director

Marty Keller is the Executive Director of the U.S. Veterans Business Alliance (USVBA) after serving as Deputy Executive Director from July, 2014, through December, 2016. The USVBA’s mission is to support Veteran entrepreneurs through training, networking, and connecting to public and private programs to encourage business contracting with disabled Veteran business enterprises (DVBEs).

Mr. Keller previously served as Director of the Office of Small Business Advocate for the State of California to which he had been appointed by former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in May, 2007, and reappointed by Governor Jerry Brown in January, 2011.

In that capacity he was a tireless proponent of realigning state government priorities regarding the essential role of small businesses in the state’s economy. Recognizing that small business owners would have to play a major role in making that happen, he produced the first-ever Governor’s Conference on Small Business & Entrepreneurship in November of 2008, where delegates voted out eleven recommendations for improving the working relationship between small businesses and state government. He then organized the Governor’s Conference on Small Business & Entrepreneurship II, held in Oakland in May of 2010.

He also worked diligently with internal state and federal government stakeholders whose work impacted small businesses to promote sharing of information, harmonizing efforts, and increasing service quality and effectiveness. As Small Business Advocate, he communicated directly and regularly with key legislators and staff on matters of concern to small businesses and disabled Veteran business enterprises.

Prior to joining the Governor’s Office, Mr. Keller was executive director of the California Automotive Business Coalition (CalABC) from 2001 through 2007. In that capacity he helped auto repair shops deal with the state’s regulatory environment and with strategies to improve the automotive repair market. During that time he served on the California Athletic Commission for two years and was elected Chairman in 2006. From 1999 to 2001, Mr. Keller was president of Greenslip, Inc., an independent automotive inspection service in Silicon Valley. From 1995 to 1999, he served in the administration of Governor Pete Wilson as chief of the Bureau of Automotive Repair. Additionally, in Governor Wilson’s first term, Mr. Keller served as chief of the Bureau of Home Furnishings and Thermal Insulation and of the Bureau of Electronic and Appliance Repair. These gubernatorial assignments included management of each regulatory program, conducting hearings and issuing regulations and disciplinary decisions. During the 1980s, Mr. Keller was national sales manager for Pacific Financial Printing, an independent graphics firm in San Francisco.

During his various terms of office, Mr. Keller has earned numerous awards for leadership and vision.

Keller earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan, and holds a Master’s Degree in Consciousness Studies from John F. Kennedy University.

USVBA BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Leslie Marchall

USVBA President & CEO of MEI Mail Services

USAF, Vietnam-Era-Disabled veteran, Leslie E. Marshall, is the President & CEO of MEI Mail Services which he founded in 1996. Mr. Marshall held various positions in Sales, Financial Management, Human Resource Management and Executive Sales Management with The International Business Machines and Apple Computer corporations. With current operations in 13 cities and 7 States, he has overseen this Mail Outsourcing, Document Management and Payment Processing company’s growth from a start-up to its current status.

Mr. Marshall has served on the Boards of Director for Theatre Three of Dallas, The Dallas Chamber Orchestra, The West View District, Circle 10 Council of the Boy Scouts of America, Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Dallas and The West Dallas Community Centers, among others. Leslie is a graduate of the University of New Mexico where he earned degrees in Accounting and Finance. In addition, he is the proud father of six accomplished children which are his pride and joy.

Randy Sinnott

Vice President USVBA & Founding shareholder of Sinnott, Puebla, Campagne & Curet

Randy Sinnott is a retired Marine Corps Colonel, who served as an Infantry Officer and Military Parachutist, including combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan.  He was wounded in a gunfight against al Qaeda and Taliban forces in Afghanistan, and received numerous awards for valor.  Randy served on the Board of Directors of the Marine Corps Reserve Officers Association, and was its National President from 2000 to 2002.   In the civilian world, Randy is the founding shareholder of Sinnott, Puebla, Campagne & Curet, a law firm with offices in Los Angeles and San Francisco.  SPCC is California’s largest DVBE law firm, and specializes in complex commercial litigation.  Randy has been involved in many of the most high profile cases in the field of insurance coverage litigation. Randy is very active in the world of non-profits and promoting the interests of the DVBE community.  He is the DVBE representative in the Insurance Diversity Initiative Task Force created by Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones to promote the utilization of diverse suppliers within the insurance industry.  Randy has been an advisor to the CalVet DVBE Task Force, and is currently the Vice-President of the Disabled Veterans Business Alliance.  Randy has an A.B in Classical Studies: Latin from the University of Michigan, and a J.D. from the University of Southern California Law School.  He lives and works in the Los Angeles, California area.

Jack Smith

USVBA Board Member

Jack Smith is a service disabled veteran who proudly served his country during Operation Iraqi Freedom in the United States Air Force. In the service, Jack was a computer programmer, supporting headquarters Air Force Weather Agency (AFWA), decoding and validating weather observations, and providing critical weather data to all US Armed Services globally. He is an experienced entrepreneur and business owner, who has spent 20 years in IT leadership, focused on business analyses, program management, human-factor diagnosis, as well as business-process engineering and improvement. Jack specializes in Enterprise Information Technology implementation, and is a recognized expert and sought-after speaker in this service line.

He holds a MBA in international business, an MIS (Management Information Systems) in project management, an AS (Associate of Science) in computer science; is ITIL (Information Technology Information Library) certified; a long standing PMP (Project Management Professional) in good standing, and is a Certified Scrum Master. Jack is the president, CEO, and owner of Fortuna Business Management Consulting, Inc., a California-based service disabled veteran-owned business. The company provides specialized business and information technology optimization services and staff augmentation for its public and private sector clients throughout the United States.

Daniel Connor

USVBA Secretary & CEO and founder of Rams Head Solutions

Daniel Connor is CEO and founder of Rams Head Solutions, a company that provides Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) services and operations to first responders and the construction and insurance industries. He transitioned from the Marine Corps in 2014, after a successful career as a combat decorated Naval Aviator, Marine One Presidential Helicopter Pilot, and military attaché.

As CEO of Rams Head Solutions, he oversees the establishment and growth of a UAS services and operations company on the cutting edge of the rapidly expanding market of aerial based data acquisition and management. Rams Head Solutions is at the nexus of the worlds of aviation and data management, and has become a leader in the field, partnering with police, fire, FAA, local governments, and industry to ensure that the disruptive technology of UAS is integrated effectively, safely, and without disruption to current operations.

Among his accomplishments as a Marine aviator, he was selected to fly Marine One, and become a Presidential Helicopter Pilot in support of the President and Vice President of the United States, visiting foreign dignitaries, and select cabinet secretaries.

Upon completion of this tour, he was again hand selected to serve as the US Naval Attaché to Pakistan, where he was an integral part of the team that reestablished working lines of communication after a diplomatic breakdown following the raid to capture/kill Osama bin Laden.

After transitioning from the Marine Corps, he served as the Vice President of Operations for vMocion, as they introduced groundbreaking medical technology into the media and entertainment industry.

Daniel has degrees in History and Political Science from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. He frequently speaks to civic and professional organizations on his experiences within the military. He resides in Newport Beach, CA, where he serves on the board of directors at Disabled Veteran Business Alliance, and enjoys assisting recently separated veterans in their transition from military to civilian life.

Erica Courtney

USVBA Board Member & CEO of 2020vet

Erica Courtney is U.S. Army combat veteran having served in various positions to include; military police, a cavalry helicopter scout pilot and paratrooper. Her staff work included   flight operations, senior logistical, contracting and budget management positions in charge of $750M in equipment, 200 million-dollar budgets and 2,500 people in the most deployable units in peacetime and in war.  Upon leaving active duty, she worked as a corporate executive and then founded a company focused on government business development growing on average of 45% year-over-year for five years.  Erica is now the CEO of 2020vet (www.2020vet.com) specializing in two arms: supply chain/logistics optimization and forensic engineering services which includes drone as a service for delivery and data capture. She is continuing to serve the nation as a Major in the U.S. Army Reserve as a Military Political Advisor to the United Nations, was a Commissioner representing more than 650K women in Florida, is on the Board of Directors for Women Impacting Public Policy and President Emeritus for the Disabled Veterans Business Alliance-the longest running veteran organization focused on veterans and entrepreneurship.  Erica has received numerous awards to include being named as a woman with the leadership background and ability to change the world by Oprah and the White House Project, 40 under 40 doing good things in business and the community by the Jacksonville, FL Business Journal, a 2015 Woman of Influence by the Silicon Valley California Business Journal, 2016 National SROTC Cadet Instructor of the Year, 2016 nominated change maker by the White House Summit on the United State of Women and the 2017 Small Business Innovation award by AT&T.  Erica has a B.S. in Communications from the University of Hawaii, an Executive MBA from Florida International University and EMBA program internships in India and China. More at https://www.linkedin.com/in/ericacourtney

 

David Feldman

USVBA Board Member & Manager, Supplier Diversity/Local Content

David Feldman is the Manager of Chevron’s Local Content/Supplier Diversity program in where he is responsibility for advocating for the utilization and development of local, small, and diverse suppliers to support the company’s international and domestic operations. Feldman assumed this role in 2014 where he promotes an inclusive work environment and a supply chain reflective of the communities where Chevron operates. Feldman represents Chevron with the local, small, and diverse supplier community and national and local nonprofit advocacy organizations.

Feldman previously held positions with Chevron Policy, Government and Public Affairs where he managed Chevron community engagement and social investment initiatives at the company’s headquarter locations in the San Francisco Bay area and in Houston. Feldman also previously held responsible positions with Chevron’s Energy Technology Company. David is a native Houstonian, attended public schools in Houston, and graduated from the University of Texas in Austin.

Ted Fuentes

USVBA Board Member & Alliance Resource Group

Ted Fuentes proudly served 8 years in the Air Force as a Crew Chief where he was responsible for the airworthiness of KC-135R Models.  After transitioning from military service, Fuentes worked for a government integrator, obtaining security clearances in order to work high profile space projects.  After learning about the opportunities that exist for a veteran business owner, Fuentes decided to start Alliance Resource Group in 2009, a premier provider of Business and IT Consulting Services. Our mission is to be recognized as the premier Disabled Veteran Owned Business Enterprise. We’re passionate about making a measurable impact in all we do. Our unique culture and approach deliver enduring results, true to each client’s specific situation. We’ll always do the right thing by our clients, our people and our communities.

We employ highly skilled veterans and civilians to meet our client business objectives where trust, relationships, integrity & teamwork are the foundations of our service delivery model. Our core capabilities include: Management Consulting, Learning & Development, and Technology Consulting.

In January of 2011, he assumed leadership for two years of the Orange County/Los Angeles Chapter of the DVBA.

Ted’s efforts with the DVBA include participating and contributing to the California Department of Veterans Affairs Advisory Council, taking on active roles for the California Public Utilities Council Committee, Legislative Committee and Chair of the Insurance Committee. He has attended multiple conferences on behalf of veterans.  Under his leadership, the Orange County/Los Angeles Chapter of the DVBA had grown, representing more than 400 local veteran entrepreneurs.  He has arranged for decision making representatives from Fortune 500 companies and State Agencies across a variety of industries in order to help increase prime, subcontracting and partnering opportunities for the organization’s veteran entrepreneurs. In 2013, he was nominated by his peers and awarded the Small Business Administration, Santa Ana District, Veteran Business Champion of The Year. He currently is an  acting member of the DVBA Board of Directors.

Dave Hornbeck

USVBA Board Member & Global Blue DVBE

Dave has over 18 years’ experience leading groups of highly motivated professionals to accomplish complex tasks while exceeding expectations both in the military and in the private sector. Under his leadership his company Global Blue DVBE has grown from a startup in 2011 to a multimillion dollar corporation that is providing ground breaking technology solutions to government and commercial clients alike. In January 2016, GBDVBE was awarded the “John K. Lopez award” for business excellence by the California Department of Veterans Affairs. Dave developed his unique leadership philosophy during his service with the United States Marine Corps. From leading react teams on the fence line in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba to running anti- I.E.D patrols in a Force Recon team in Iraq he had the chance to learn valuable lessons in leadership and decisiveness. “Mission Accomplishment” is something that Marines are well known for and Dave ingrained this into his company’s culture.  He holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Business Administration, Summa Cum Laude, from California State University-Sacramento. He has a passion to help other Veterans find gainful employment or to start their own businesses. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Disabled Veteran Business Alliance.

Raimone Roberts

USVBA Treasurer

Raimone has assisted +600 businesses, led cross-
functional teams of 100s of people, managed budgets
in the hundreds of millions, including taskings of
developing and implementing a variety of state-of- the-
art DoD technologies.

Raul Deju, Ph.D.

USVBA Board Member

Dr. Raul Deju has served in executive positions at International Technology Corporation (now Chicago Bridge and Iron) as CEO of URS, Inc.; President of a number of subsidiaries of Waste Management both in the US and overseas; CEO of DGL Inc.; Chairman of Isadra, Inc.; and President and COO of both Headwaters and EnergySolutions. Dr. Deju has served as an advisor to the Secretary of Commerce and the US EPA Administrator. He is the author of 7 books and over 200 peer reviewed articles. He was named one of the top 25 Latinos in the San Francisco area and received commendations for his Latino philanthropy. In 2016 published his seventh book “WE GOT MOJO!” now available at Amazon and other booksellers. Until 2017 he headed a consulting company focused on entrepreneurship and investments. Now serves as Senior Partner of a Private Equity firm Brightstar Capital Partners especializing in investing in closely held businesses. As part of Brightstar, he serves as Chairman of the Board of Texas Water Supply Co. a portfolio company of the firm. He founded the Institute of Entrepreneurial Leadership where he has mentored over 200 student companies with current annual revenue in excess of $2 Billion. Dr. Deju serves on the Board of the New Mexico Institute of Technology Research Foundation and the Research Park Board and also as a board member of the California Polytechnic University Institute for Advanced Technology and Public Policy. In the last quarter of 2017 he was appointed as a Director to the Board of the US Veterans Business Alliance. He has been involved with over $5 B in monetization of assets through various liquidity means.