While working in the RADAR Squadron at Hill AFB, Linda received a call from a man named Vincent Kinsey. Linda had worked with him on an environmental information system called the Hazardous Material Management System (HMMS). Vince offered Linda some software development work at NASA sub-contracting to a prime defense contractor called MECx.
The ChemSecure Phase II pilot program controlled item content and staff credentials based on real-time information, to ensure safety and security of personnel and chemicals, and to push organized mission critical data to emergency responders when addressing chemical accidents. The HMMS application used sensor based and real time response technology to track hazardous materials using Radio Frequency ID (RFID) tags.
At the time, Linda was divorced and had three children in high school. Linda would need to make a move from a W2 employee to having her own business to complete the work. Linda thought about it for a day and then jumped at the opportunity. Linda was suddenly thrown into the world of business. Linda had never imagined owning her own business, and of course, didn’t learn everything in college.
Sensory Technology Consultants (STC) was born on June 1, 2006. STC was originally organized as a Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) with a home office address in Morgan, Utah. STC moved to Kaysville, North Ogden, and Layton, Utah.
In 2009, Linda decided to apply for the SBA 8(a) program. She had to write a narrative because she was not a typical minority. She had been discriminated against based on gender during her career. Women software engineers are paid less than men, and the salary discrepancy was easily proven with national salary and census data. She wrote a narrative that described the discrimination and was accepted into the program.
However, on the eve of acceptance, the SBA realized her single member LLC was not single member in the eyes of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Linda quickly added her daughter, Jennifer Remund, as the other member of the LLC and now STC was up to two employees.
After being accepted into the 8(a) program in 2009, Linda was ill-prepared for what to do with that status. She knows exactly what to do now and has written a book to help other business owners called The Minority and Woman-Owned Small Business Guide to Government Contracts: Everything You Need to Know to Get Started.
Finally, after one year, Linda had a company called Infinite Technologies (ITI) approach her and needed an 8(a) to save some employees that they had on a project. STC took 51% of the work, and they got 49%. Each company hired one employee, and now, STC was up to 3 employees. The year was 2010.
That year, the most important thing to ever happened to STC was an official Mentor/Protégé relationship with a company called Select Engineering Services (SES). With SES, STC went after and won several contracts in Engineering and Technical Writing. With our wins, STC had at one time, 15 employees.
On June 30, 2013, we received a summons from Sensory Technologies, LLC, which was owned by Markey’s Video Images, LLC and based in Indiana. Linda had been receiving letters from them accusing us of violating the Lanham Act by using their trademark “Sensory Technologies” and demanding us to cease using the name Sensory Technology Consultants and to relinquish our website domain and profits.
Because of an upcoming proposal, the time was not good to change the company name. The risk of our company name not getting updated in all of the necessary government systems and joint venture agreements was too great.
Linda had never been to Indiana, nor had she done any business in Indiana. Also, none of her employees have been there either. Negotiations failed, and STC had to change their company name because it was not worth the cost of battling the lawsuit.
In August of 2014, Sensory Technology Consultants became DynaGrace Enterprises. Dyna is defined as power and Grace is defined as elegance. Grace is Linda’s middle name as well as her deceased paternal grandmother, Olive Grace Munn Beasley.
Our company has seen growth from a one-person company to a company with at one time over 15 employees. We have increased our customer base to include the Navy, Air Force, and Air National Guard. Because of the knowledge, we have gained from the 8(a) program we can now take that knowledge and do commercial work.
SES, our major partner, has lost work to other companies. Large Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ)s have become a mainstay and are pushing out small business. Lowest Price Technically Acceptable (LPTA) has allowed companies to bid low and perform sub-quality work. We have seen a lot of small business opportunities dry up, including those we had with SES, and are shifting our focus to an industry with more opportunity.