Oklahoma is not always considered a force to be reckoned with when it comes to major industry, but more and more, state businesses are proving they can compete on national and international levels. One such example is a small company based in Muskogee, Okla., the winner of a major federal contract with serious implications for the entire country.
Data Video Systems, 2007 West Shawnee in Muskogee, recently announced its contract with the Northrop Grumman Corporation to provide border security surveillance for the majority of the land ports of entry along the southeast border of the United States.
This contract will give DVS the opportunity to be part of the Homeland Security team, providing a surveillance solution to secure more than 40 official border crossings along a 1,900 mile U.S./Mexico border, stretching from San Diego, Calif. to Brownsville, Texas.
What do big contracts with the federal government mean to the average citizen? The new systems along the borders of Mexico will provide the border patrol with the abilities to identify potential threats entering the country.
When first thinking about border control, the thought that tends to come to mind is the control of illegal immigrants crossing over into the United States, but according to Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Dan Hobbs, the major area of concern continues to be the passing of contraband and drug trafficking. The government is attempting to gain more control over the heavily-armed immigrants bringing contraband across the border.
For citizens on both sides of the border, the new surveillance system means the hope of safer communities in both countries. The border contract is scheduled for one year, and at the end of that time, it will be reevaluated to ensure that the project is reaching its goals.
President and CEO of DVS, Gary R. Wilson released a statement saying, "We are pleased to partner with Northrop Grumman, NTMI and CLMS on this important initiative. Assisting CBP in securing our nation's ports of entry along the southern U.S. border is an endeavor we are proud to be a part of."
Northrop Grumman is a $30 billion global defense and technology company that employs 120,000 workers to provide innovative systems, products and solutions in information and services in electronics, aerospace and ship building to government and commercial customers worldwide.
Hobbs said past achievements and hard marketing work in Washington, D.C., landed this new contract for DVS.
"We've done a lot of footwork in Washington and scored high marks on our smaller contracts in the past with other organizations, which have all aided this opportunity," Hobbs said.
DVS is a small company, certified by the Small Business Administration as 8(a), Native-American, Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned and HUBZoned because of its location in an area like Muskogee. According to Hobbs, all of these small certifications aid in its ability to acquire major federal contracts.
"All of these certifications give us an opportunity to compete with bigger corporations, because many federal contracts require contract recipients to be certified in some minority area," Hobbs said.
DVS was established in 1993 and specializes in the installation of digital surveillance systems, access control systems, biometric access and identification systems. The company has experience working with clients such as the U.S. Departments of Energy, Interior, Homeland Security and Transportation and was recently honored as the "National Minority Technology Firm of the Year" by the Department of Commerce.
President Gary Wilson was also named in the Top 25 Most Influential Executives in Security Magazine. Honors like these help get the word out across the country about small businesses and their abilities to make a huge difference.
For small companies like DVS, contracts like these are important for getting other major contracts and spreading the word that small businesses in rural areas are just as, if not more so, capable of delivering grade A work for not only government authorities but also for local citizens and other major corporations.
Data Video Systems hopes its work on the border will give it the opportunity to work with more projects from the Department of Homeland Security. Breaking into a national arena for contract bidding is important for many Oklahoma businesses that continue to need the exposure and revenue in order to make their businesses a success.
DVS is proof that many Oklahoma companies indeed have what it takes to make a difference on not only a national level but on a worldwide scope.
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