can do it all,” says John Slye, senior industry analyst at INPUT, a Reston, Virginia-based provider of information services to the government IT community. “If companies can’t compete on the huge billion-dollar-plus initiatives, they need to bring something to the table so that they’re a significant subprime player.”
And that’s what Hunt planned to do three years before graduating from the program. “We started bidding on less set asides and focusing on $20 million, $50 million, and $100 million jobs,” he says. “We still had that safe umbrella to maintain and grow, but we needed to understand how to compete in a larger, more competitive arena.”
Two years after leaving the 8(a) program, founding partner W. Scott Amey retired, leaving Rodney to assume the additional role of chief operating officer. Hunt and Trowbridge purchased Amey’s shares, becoming the company’s sole shareholders.
Hunt learned from his parents that when one is blessed with success, giving back is required. So when he heard that Prince George’s County’s Run N’ Shoot Athletic Center was shut down, he decided to do something about it. The previous owners pulled out because the high crime rate in the area kept customers away. In its heyday, the 10-court facility hosted two minor-league basketball teams and amateur basketball tournaments. “The catalyst that got me to go forward with it was a story I heard on the news about a young boy that was selling teddy bears to try to raise enough money,” Hunt recalls. “He had no idea what it would take to reopen the gym–the people who were involved before had taken their profit and were long gone. There were liens on the equipment, from the back boards to the nets. But that gym meant so much to this young kid, so I called my attorney and said ‘Let’s go do this.’”
Hunt invested about $1 million in the 113,000-square-foot facility, renaming it the Capital Sports Center. The money helped purchase new equipment and renovate bathrooms, team rooms, the kitchen, store, and other areas. There is also a VIP workout facility where local professional athletes can train privately.
These days, RSIS is providing several services to the government. A recent project was a war games scenario for the Air Force that included U.S. allies Canada, Britain, and Australia. “We modeled what could happen in the year 2025 against our satellite assets and how we would defend those and launch counterattacks against adversaries, and had parts of the Department of Defense and national intelligence agencies together to play in that war game,” says Herdman. In the simulation, events would unfold and the participants would develop strategies in reaction. Those strategies were examined by a think tank of analysts to determine their effectiveness. Needless to say, the results are classified.
Hunt admits that he’s spent a lot of time pondering the future of his company and weighs the possibility of an IPO, which would make him one of four publicly-traded BE 100S companies. With a backlog of about $1.3 billion over the