Carol Ann is the Vice President of Program Management Excellence for Akima, a $1.6B holding company that owns and manages over 40 operating companies providing aviation, construction, facilities and logistics, IT and mission support, protective services and detention management, and system engineering to federal customers worldwide. In this role, she created a program to train over 200 project and program managers (PMs) in Akima’s expectations and processes, enhance the orientation of those newly hired or promoted to the PM role, and foster a sense of community among these employees who are critical to Akima’s success yet highly geographically dispersed. This year, the program is being expanded to focus on leadership development to support succession planning and the growth of PMs into future executive roles.
Prior to creating the Program Management Excellence program at Akima, Carol Ann held President, General Manager and Executive Committee positions for four different operating companies within the Akima portfolio. During this time, Carol Ann grew both Wolverine Services and Akima Support Operations from infancy to $50-100M in annual revenue and managed business portfolios as large as $120M and 1,200 employees in 12 states. She was responsible for strategy development, new business growth, operational excellence and improvement. Government customers included the US Army, US Air Force, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), US Department of Agriculture (USDA), National Institutes of Health (NIH), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), Sandia National Laboratories, and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
Before joining Akima in 2008, Carol Ann held leadership roles at General Dynamics, Veridian, and MRJ Technology Solutions, where she was recognized as a leader who is quick to get meaningful results and an operational problem solver. Her achievements include the turn-around of a $350M, 5-year contract from operating 17% over budget to achieve 12.5% profit within 5 months.
Carol Ann is known for her quick execution, and experience in leading, motivating and growing personnel for delivery and succession planning. She is experienced in integration, and leading large teams through mergers, acquisitions and significant reorganizations. As she puts it:
I am driven by the desire to make people and organizations the best they can be.
Carol Ann is on the Advisory Board for an application start-up company focused on streamlining executive networking, and on the Advisory Board for Colorado Thought Leaders Forum’s Wise Women program where she co-leads the Ambassador cohort, heading up recruitment and retention activities. Prior to these engagements, Carol Ann served on the Board of Directors and Board Development and Governance Committee for a privately-held start-up company focused on improving the quality of life for individuals with mental health disorders. She served as the Lead Advisor for Blackstone Entrepreneurs Network (BEN) member company Resi (formerly Living As One), which focused on improving communications within and between geographically broad organizations, until the company was acquired by PushPay.
She has also served five years on a significant engagement with charter school and building corporation boards, including 3 years as Governance Committee Chair. Major board accomplishments include the purchase and expansion of a school facility, review and update of the board’s policy manual, and creation of a formal recruitment and new director training process. Additionally, Carol Ann provided two years advisory board service to develop strategy to expand a Denver-based executive coaching practice into a national job search business.
Carol Ann earned a bachelor’s degree from Hofstra University and a master’s degree in Computer Resource and Information Management from Webster University. She was a member of Association for Corporate Growth (ACG) Denver 2017 CEO Outlook Panel and is a regular presenter in both virtual and live events.
The mother to two teenage sons, and wife to her husband of mover than 30 years, Carol Ann loves spending her free time playing board games and cards. She also is the owner of “You’re Gonna Need Stitches,” a family-run custom embroidery business. Be sure to connect with Carol Ann, to hear about her vast experience in leadership, and to find out more about her Program Management Excellence program.