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The National Guard meeting with small business owners at Alliance Northwest 2023.

Alliance Northwest on March 14 at the Tacoma Convention Center is shaping up to once again be the biggest government contracting conference in the region. With over 100 exhibitors already registered and 12 breakout session speakers confirmed, this event will offer a lot of value to businesses and government agencies at the federal, state, and local levels.  

"I can't emphasize enough how important it is to attend Alliance Northwest every year! Where else can you talk one on one with large construction firms, city agencies, and government agencies? The learning sessions were invaluable." Commented Rose Mednick, President of Image360.  

Last year's event featured over 200 pre-scheduled meetings between agencies, prime contractors, and small businesses. "We expect that number to double this year which will result in even greater value for the exhibitors and attendees. We have many agencies and primes eager to attend the event for the specific reason of building their bidder pool and drumming up interest in their upcoming procurements." explained Tiffany Scroggs who serves on the conference planning committee. 

To register an exhibit booth or as an attendee, visit Discounted registration links for OMWBE and WDVA Certified firms are availab

A White House Memo issued January 25 calls for increasing small business participation on Multiple Award Contracts. The memo directs federal agencies to apply the small business "Rule of Two" for all orders. The "Rule of Two" is a long-standing practice in competitive procurements designed to boost small business set asides in federal procurement: If there are two or more small businesses that can do the work, then set it aside so only small businesses can compete.  Many agencies, however, use discretion when applying the Rule of Two to multiple award contract task orders. The memo directs agencies to apply the Rule of Two with "limited exception," encourages agencies to maximize orders to small businesses if the value of the contract is under $250,000,  and make the Best in Class contracts work for small businesses. Read more analysis and see a link to the full memo at the blog linked here

Department of Defense Office of Small Business Programs provided a recap of 2023 progress in supporting small businesses and looks to future growth in 2024. Watch the video here.

Contact Us

Contact a Government Contracting Specialist today for assistance with all your government contracting questions.

[email protected]

Main Center

Thurston EDC

4220 6th Ave.

Lacey, WA 98503



Administrative Staff

Tiffany Scroggs, Program Manager

Marnie Tyson

Lisa Lagerstrom

Tori Stoner


Innovation Station

Kate Hoy


Thurston EDC

Grady Smith

Leslie Miller


Washington APEX Accelerator in Pierce County

Trena Payton

Maryam Lynch-Tate


Sub Centers

Economic Alliance Snohomish County

Cara Buckingham

Mark Johnson


Greater Spokane Inc.

Aleesha Roedel


Columbia River Economic Development Council

Julia Krivoruk


Green River College

Darrell Sundell

Melinda Martirosian

Kitsap Economic Development Alliance  

Mary Jo Juarez

James Davis

Terry Homburg


Tri-City Regional Chamber of Commerce

Maria Alleman

WSDOT Contract Clause: A new antidiscrimination clause was added to all state contracts for public works, goods, and services starting January 1. The clause will need to flow down to subcontractors and be shared with labor organizations with which your firm has collective bargaining or other agreements. Learn more at this link. View the WSDOT General Special Provision here that was published January 25. 

Interstate Bridge Replacement Program involves a 5-mile stretch of Interstate 5 that includes replacing the 106-year-old bridge connecting Oregon and Washington over the Columbia River. The $6 billion program kicked off in 2020, the engineering contract is currently being performed, and other portions of the procurement phases will begin early this year. In-water construction is slated to start fall 2026. To stay engaged sign up to receive updates here.

Learn more here

DOE SBIR/STTR - Writing a Compelling Application and Planning Your Time        

2/8/2024         12:00 PM - 1:00 PM     

Join us as Sonia Vohnout, UACI Subject Matter Expert reviews techniques for writing your proposal. This will include information about budgeting time, addressing proposal requirements, and independent proofing.


DOE SBIR/STTR -Nailing Your SBIR/STTR Project Narrative          

2/13/2024       10:00 AM - 11:00 AM   

This DOE-sponsored webinar provides strategic and tactical advice from experts including past DOE grantees on how to write a technical volume that will increase your chances of winning an SBIR/STTR grant. The heart of this webinar will be 30-minute breakout groups with experts to get their take on your specific challenges and questions.         


DOE SBIR/STTR Developing Your SBIR/STTR Commercialization Plan       

2/15/2024       12:00 PM - 1:00 PM      

Join us as Sonia Vohnout, UACI Subject Matter Expert reviews strategies and techniques for preparing your commercialization plan for your SBIR/STTR application and create achievable goals and metrics.


DOE SBIR/STTR Preparing DEIA and PIER Plans with SMART Goals           

2/20/2024       12:00 PM - 1:00 PM      

Join us as Cameron Barnes, DEIA Subject Matter Expert discusses the key elements of DEIA and PIER Plans and how to write SMART goals.          


FLC Member Connect: Naval SWC - Carderock Division  

2/7/2024         11:00 AM - 11:30 AM               

Join the February Member Connect for an overview of the Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC) Carderock Division. The NSWC Carderock Division, located in Maryland, is an advanced research, engineering, modeling and test center for ships and ship systems. The NSWC Carderock Division supports both the U.S. Navy and the maritime industry.

Looking for help? Register as an APEX Client for no-cost assistance.


Questions? Kate Hoy, [email protected]

Events - Virtual unless otherwise noted

  • Preparing for Alliance Northwest 2024
  • FIRE Classes
  • Focused Classes 
  • Monthly Meetings
  • Series Courses
  • Tradeshows

Preparing for Alliance Northwest

SBA Certification Overview and APEX Resources

2/22/2024       10:00 AM - 11:00 AM   

The U.S. Small Business Administration - Seattle Region will provide a big-picture overview of small business certifications in the federal government marketplace. In this event, you will learn about various federal small business certification programs, including Small Business Self Certification, Small Disadvantaged Business (SDB) & 8(a), Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB), Veteran-Owned Small Business (VOSB), Historically Underutilized Business Zones (HUBZone), Woman-Owned Small Business (WOSB), and Economic Disadvantaged Woman-Owned Small Business (EDWOSB).


OMWBE Certifications - Why they're important and how to obtain them

2/20/2024       3:30 PM - 5:00 PM

Have you considered getting your business certified? Join us to learn all there is to know about state and federal certifications and how to apply, as well as all the latest updates from Washington state's certifying agency, the Office of Minority & Women's Business Enterprises (OMWBE).  

FIRE Classes

US Forest Service VIPR I-BPA Virtual Vendor Engagement Meetings 2024

2/8/2024         4:00 PM – 5:30 PM

2/29/2024       4:00 PM – 5:30 PM

3/12/2024       4:00 PM – 5:30 PM

The US Forest Service will be hosting three vendor engagement sessions for those interested in our VIPR I-BPA Program. The Forest Service Equipment & Service Branch leads you to be able to join and answer specific questions geared towards PTAC/APEX that vendors may have during the Q&A portion.

In-Person Fire Vendor Outreach Sessions - Region 6      

2/20/2024       6:00 PM - 8:00 PM       


The USDA Forest Service contracts with industry equipment and services to aid in obtaining mission objectives such as wildland fire suppression, assisting in supporting the Wildfire Crisis Strategy (WCS), and other incident project support. The Virtual Incident Procurement (VIPR) system is used for Forest Service regions to issue solicitations and award agreements for resources secured under preseason agreements. The FVOS's intent is to distribute information on current solicitations and contracting opportunities.


US Forest Service VIPR I-BPA IN PERSON Vendor Engagement Meetings 2024

2/26/2024       6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Mercantile Wenatchee (Ellis-Forde Building), 14 N. Wenatchee Avenue, Wenatchee, WA 98801

2/27/2024       6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Hampton Inn by Hilton Spokane Airport, 2010 S Assembly Road. Spokane, WA 99224


These 2-hour sessions are an opportunity for small businesses seeking additional information on Virtual Incident Procurement (VIPR) System contracting opportunities within Region 6 (OR & WA). Registration is not required.

More locations and information 

Focused Classes

Small Business Development Workshop “Working with a Union Contractor”       

2/5/2024         9:00 AM - 11:00 AM     

Join the I-405/Brickyard project team for a personal, interactive, and informative event. "Working with a Union Contractor". SBE, VOB, MBE and WBE community will have the opportunity to connect with Skanska representatives, industry experts and fellow entrepreneurs.        


King County Pro-Equity Contracting Open House

2/7/2024         1:00 PM - 2:30 PM       

Enterprises (M/WBEs) to contract with the county. This open house event introduces King County's pro-equity contracting programs and initiatives related to architecture, engineering, and construction contracting for capital projects. You will also hear success stories from local small and medium M/WBEs and learn about grant opportunities.       


Why SDVOSBs That Work Together Win More Business 

2/8/2024         11:00 AM - 12:00 PM   

This webinar series was specifically designed to transfer the know-how needed to transform competent SDVOSBs into today’s Agencies preferred source for SDVOSB/SDB contract(s) award. Join us for this informative, hands-on series as we demonstrate how you maximize the organic contracting advantages you already own under PL-106-50 & PL 108-183.    


Architecture, Engineering & Professional Services Consultant Orientation: How to do Business with King County

2/15/2024       10:00 AM - 12:00 PM   

King County offers an Architecture, Engineering & Professional Services Consultant Orientation. Our experts will discuss how King County implements contracts, and: how to effectively market your firm to King County agencies, tips for submitting successful proposals and best practices to maximize your opportunities.


SBA Wednesday Webinar - Joint Ventures Contracting Program 

2/21/2024       10: 00 AM - 11:00 AM  

Wednesday Webinars with SBA Seattle is an ongoing series of free, virtual, webinars covering a variety of topics to benefit small business owners. On the third Wednesday of each month, we will be focusing on government contracting opportunities, certifications, and business development programs. The joint venture may also pursue any type of set-aside contract for which the protégé qualifies, including contracts set aside for 8(a), service-disabled veteran-owned, woman-owned, and HUBZone businesses.        


Contract Modifications

2/21/2024       3:00 PM - 5:00 PM       

We experience change in everything – contracts are no different. A change to the contract is a modification. Modifications can be unilateral or bilateral. You will learn in this class: Your Rights, Remedies, Processes and Terminology.         


Why OMWBE Certification? Wenatchee

2/22/2024       3:30 PM - 5:00 PM      

Eastmont Community Center

230 N. Georgia Avenue, East Wenatchee, WA 98802

Join us for, “Why OMWBE Certification?” Hosted by Bouten Construction Company with special guest Grady Smith, Government Contracting Specialist. You will learn about the advantages of becoming certified, certification assistance resources, qualification requirement, directory and opportunities overview and things to consider before bid.

Monthly Meetings

Contracting Coffee Hour

2/7/2024      8:00 AM - 10:00 AM     

If you want the inside scoop on what it takes to win government contracts, we invite you to attend our Contractor Coffee Hour. We host retired government contracting officers, current Federal Small Business Liaison Officers, APEX Counselors, and subject matter experts that bring years of experience that you can leverage to refine your approach to government contracting. These monthly presentations will always be relevant and provide tangible tools that you can use to give you an edge in your success as a government contractor!

APEX & SBDC First Friday Follow-Up - February

2/2/2024        12:00 PM - 1:00 PM     

Friday Follow-up is an open forum, round table for businesses to get answers from your local APEX and SBDC Advisors. Bring your questions regarding government contracting and learn from knowledgeable Small Business Experts. Our focus is to share resources for growing your business.

APEX: Prime Connect

2/14/2024         8:00 AM - 9:00 AM      

A structured matchmaking event for Primes and Subcontractors to connect on future projects.

Doing Business with the State – DES

2/15/2024           3:00 PM - 4:00 PM       

On the third Thursday of the month, the Washington State Department of Enterprise Services (DES) facilitates an interactive conversation with state procurement professionals who can provide information and insight on how to do business with the state. 


University of Washington Virtual Workshops for Suppliers

2/1/2024 or 3/7/2024 10:30 AM - 12:00 PM           

The orientations will provide a learning opportunity to assist in navigating potential business prospects at the University and with other state agencies, as well as educational and other resources to assist businesses. 

Series Courses

Join Washington DC-based, Jennifer Schaus & Associates in the 2024 Webinar Series covering The FAR (Federal Acquisition Regulations). Get educated about the rules and regulations in the game of federal contracting. This series features guest speakers who will uncover the important details and nuances of The FAR. This series is COMPLIMENTARY & RECORDED. Sessions are 9:00 AM - 10:00 AM PDT

2/7/2024        FAR Part 4, Administrative Matters

2/9/2024        FAR Part 5, Publicizing Contract Actions

2/14/2024      FAR Part 6, Competition Requirements

2/16/2024      FAR Part 7, Acquisition Planning

2/21/2024      FAR Part 8, Required Sources of Supplies and Services

2/23/2024      FAR Part 9, Contractor Qualifications

2/28/2024      FAR Part 10, Market Research

Tradeshows and Networking

INL Fabrication & Machining Industry Days        

2/6/2024         8:00 AM - 2:00 PM

2/7/2024         9:00 AM - 2:00 PM       

775 MK Simpson Blvd., Idaho Falls, ID, 83401

 Join the Idaho National Laboratory (INL) February 6th and 7th for an Industry Day dedicated to INL’s Fabrication and Machining needs. All attendees must be U.S. Citizens     


Meet the Buyers Open House – Skagit and Whatcom County     

2/7/2024         9:00 AM - 12:00 PM     

Skagit Station Community Room

105 East Kincaid Street, Mount Vernon, WA, 98273

WA APEX Accelerator and EDASC bring local government buyers and businesses together to network and learn. At this Meet the Buyers event, you will have an opportunity to get connected with buyers from agencies in Skagit and Whatcom Counties, learn about upcoming changes to Public Works laws, and hear from local businesses that are successfully performing in the government marketplace.


Meet & Greet: Interstate Bridge Replacement Program 

2/8/2024         4:00 PM - 7:00 PM       

7100 Fort Dent Way, Seattle, WA, 98188

The interstate Bridge Replacement program is teaming up with the Conference of Minority Transportation Officials, Washington State chapter to host a meet and greet for DBE and prime contractors to get information about upcoming contracting opportunities. Learn how your firm could be a part of this once-in-a-generation opportunity to replace vital aging infrastructure.


How to Do Business with DOI    

2/22/2024       9:00 AM- 12:00 PM      

1849 C Street NW, Washington, Washington DC, 20240

On behalf of the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI), the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU), we are inviting you to attend and/or share with constitutes the U. S. Department of the Interior “How to Do Business with DOI” In-Person/Hybrid Small Business Outreach event. In-person and virtual attendance options.


Alliance Northwest Conference

3/14/2024       8:00 AM - 4:00 PM       

1500 Commerce St, Tacoma, WA, 98402

Alliance Northwest is the largest business-to-government conference in the Pacific Northwest. This event features high-quality workshops and matchmaking sessions between small businesses, government agencies, and prime contractors.          



4/3/2024         7:30 AM - 5:00 PM       

Three Rivers Convention Center

7016 W Grandridge Blvd, Kennewick, WA, 99336

Elevate your business game at the 17th Annual Bridging Partnerships Small Business Symposium on April 3-4, 2024! Join us for two days of unparalleled networking, insightful learning sessions, and relationship-building opportunities. Whether you're from a small or large business, this event is your gateway to increased procurement and countless business prospects. Secure your spot now and be part of an impactful experience that propels your business to new heights!  

Govology classes, live and on-demand, are Free for Washington APEX clients – contact your APEX counselor for access. Click here for the list of Govology this month’s live classes. 


Recorded webinars available 

APEX Calendar

Washington APEX Accelerator, formerly Washington PTAC provides technical assistance to help Washington businesses successfully compete in the government marketplace. A program of the Thurston Economic Development Council, in partnership with the following subcenters: