2022 Speakers


  Dr. Kathleen Hicks
Deputy Secretary of Defense
Dr. Kathleen H. Hicks serves as the 35th Deputy Secretary of Defense; she was sworn into that office on Feb. 9, 2021. Prior to becoming Deputy Secretary, Dr. Hicks held the position of senior vice president, Henry A. Kissinger Chair, and Director of the International Security Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. From 2009 to 2013, she served as a senior civilian official in the Department of Defense. Confirmed by the United States Senate in 2012 as principal deputy undersecretary of defense for policy, she was responsible for advising the secretary of defense on global and regional defense policy and strategy. She also served as deputy undersecretary of defense for strategy, plans, and forces, leading the development of the 2012 Defense Strategic Guidance and the 2010 Quadrennial Defense Review and crafting guidance for future force capabilities, overseas military posture, and contingency and theater campaign plans.  Prior to becoming the DUSD for SPF, from 2006 to 2009 Deputy Secretary Hicks was a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Deputy Secretary Hicks launched her career as a civil servant in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, serving from 1993 to 2006 in a variety of capacities and rising from Presidential Management Intern to the Senior Executive Service.
Senator Tim Kaine
Senator Tim Kaine was elected to the Senate in 2012 and serves on the Armed Services; Budget; Foreign Relations; and Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committees. Tim has made boosting job opportunities for everyone a top priority. As co-chair of the bipartisan Career and Technical Education (CTE) Caucus, Tim focuses on expanding access to job-training programs to ensure that students of all ages are prepared with the skills they need for the jobs of the modern economy. Tim has also led successful efforts in the Senate to reduce unemployment for military families and veterans. As a Senator from one of the states most closely connected to the military and the father of a Marine, Tim is focused on crafting smart defense strategy and reducing the risk of unnecessary war. He works to ensure that the military has the resources it needs to keep the country safe and that servicemembers and veterans receive the benefits and care they have earned. He has also
been the leading voice against Presidents starting wars without a vote by Congress. Tim believes that health care is a right, not something reserved just for those who can afford it, and has consistently pushed for reforms to expand access to quality care. This includes legislation to give Americans more options for affordable health insurance and to combat the opioid abuse epidemic. 
Brian Griffin
Partner, The Duberstein Group
Brian J. Griffin is a Partner at The Duberstein Group.  He was most recently Vice President of Government Relations for Honeywell International, representing global corporate interests in transportation and energy markets and managing strategies key to growing Honeywell businesses. Prior to that, he served as Senior Leadership Advisor and Floor Policy Director for Sen. Byron Dorgan, Democratic Policy Committee Chairman.  He was responsible for coordinating and implementing all facets of Senate floor policy strategy, and supporting Sen. Dorgan as a senior member on the Commerce, Appropriations and Energy Committees. Before joining Sen. Dorgan’s staff, he served as the Senate Floor Assistant for Minority Leader Tom Daschle, where he advised Senators, senior staff, White House and agency officials on floor activity and legislative procedure.
Zach Parker
President, CEO and Board Director
Zachary “Zach” Parker has served as DLH’s president, chief executive officer, and board director since 2010. Mr. Parker has spearheaded three strategic acquisitions during his tenure, expanding DLH’s service portfolio to include a broader range of technology-enabled Federal services and public health capabilities through the integration of Danya International, Inc. in 2016, Social & Scientific Systems, Inc. in 2019, and Irving Burton Associates, LLC in 2020.
David Schiappa
Partner, The Duberstein Group
David Schiappa joined the Duberstein Group after retiring in 2013 from the United States Senate after almost 29 years of service.  David served under Republican Leaders Bob Dole, Trent Lott, Bill Frist, and the current Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell.  From 2001 until his retirement, Schiappa served as Republican Secretary, and held the titles of Secretary for the Minority and Secretary for the Majority, depending on party control of the Senate.  During his tenure in the Senate, Schiappa also served as the Assistant Secretary for the Majority and as the Republican Floor Assistant. Schiappa’s role as the Secretary for the Majority (or Minority), was to assist the Republican Leader and all Republican Senators on their legislative agenda.  As part of his responsibilities on the Senate floor, Schiappa served as a liaison between the Republican Leader and the Democrat leadership in negotiating agreements on legislative and executive matters.  He also provided parliamentary advice and counsel to all Republican Senators regarding floor strategy during consideration of all pending matters on the Senate floor. Schiappa assisted each Republican Leader with their weekly leadership meetings.  During those meetings David provided counsel to the entire Republican leadership team on legislative strategy and the status of any negotiations with the Democrat leadership.  His role also required a close collaboration with the Chairman and Ranking Member of each committee, as well as their staff directors. In addition to assisting every Senator in the Republican Conference with their legislative priorities, Schiappa met each week with their Chiefs of Staff to keep them apprised of the legislative calendar and progress. As an officer of the Senate, Schiappa participated in many official and ceremonial functions, including participating in Joint Sessions of Congress, Republican National Conventions, Presidential Inaugural activities, as well as accompanying Senators abroad for official Congressional Delegations.
Carey Smith
President and Chief Executive Officer, Parsons
As the president and chief executive officer of Parsons Corporation (NYSE: PSN), Carey is responsible for the company’s strategy, growth, business execution, and global operations. Parsons is headquartered in Centreville, Va., operates globally in 26 countries with ~16,000 employees, and creates the future of national security and global infrastructure to deliver a better world.   
Carey joined Parsons in 2016 as president of the Federal Solutions business. She was promoted to chief operating officer in 2018, and president and chief operating officer in 2019.  During this time, Carey operationalized the company’s business segments, merged the federal and critical infrastructure functions, enhanced organic top and bottom-line growth across both segments, drove the acquisition identification and integration of six companies (Williams Electric, Polaris Alpha®, OGSystems®, QRC® Technologies, Braxton Science and Technology Group, BlackHorse Solutions), and helped take the company public. She was unanimously elected chief executive officer of Parsons Corporation by the board of directors and appointed to the position in July 2021.