Lonye Ford, CEO of Arlo Solutions and her business partner recently secured a $28 million government contract. But, things didn’t start off that way. It took 2 years for Arlo Solutions to land its first government contract.
In this episode, Dreamer Lonye Ford shares her journey and lessons learned from starting her company to landing multi-million government contracts providing innovative cybersecurity solutions and services to government agencies.
In this episode, Lonye also explains why now is a good time for minorities to get into government contracting and current policies in place to increase the contracts going to underserved communities.
In this episode, Lonye Ford discusses:
- How to get started in government contracting
- How to finance government contracts after winning a bid
- How the Air Force and relocating to Washington D.C. helped change her life
- The importance of dreaming big
- Working to support your dreams
- How to find the right business partner
- How she is investing to build more wealth for the future
- Why now is t a good time for minorities to get into government contracting
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Dreamers’ Wealth of Wisdom:
- It was really a full circle moment for me to be in the black enterprise because growing up, there was not a lot of representation for me. – Lonye Ford
- Having the right partner is really foundational to building a business because again, people are really what’s important—the people that you have around you. – Lonye Ford
- While doing banking, I realized that I had gotten so accustomed to working for the Government that’s really focused on a mission—serving the people. – Lonye Ford
- I really had to start from the bottom again. I guess my story is a story of recreating yourself. – Lonye Ford
- Most of the time, we just want to look at the results, but we don’t necessarily realize that we have to embrace the process and that it doesn’t come easy for anyone. So, and I think a big part of it is getting uncomfortable. – Anne-Lyse Wealth
- Now, I look at like conformity like it’s a sickness because people get so accustomed to the rigmarole. They’re like stuck in a matrix. So that’s what I meant when I said I had outgrown my environment. I didn’t want to conform; I didn’t want to get complacent. – Lonye Ford
- When you are looking for a partnership, find someone that’s strong where you aren’t. – Lonye Ford
- You have to realize that sometimes you have to chase your dreams on the side until your dream can really fund your life. – Lonye Ford
- Something had changed and shifted in the world. Something happened that made all people of all colors take a step back, take a pause, and just really assess, in this particular case, how African Americans are treated in America, and that caused a ripple effect. – Lonye Ford
- Marching is really why I’m here now, which is why it is my responsibility also to reach back once I get here. I understand that one of the reasons that I’m here is because someone forced people to look and change policy and the laws. – Lonye Ford
- I’m here not just because our people helped us. I’m here because people helped us—white, black, Spanish—people in general. So when I say community, I mean the community at large, too. – Lonye Ford
About the Guest:
Lonye Nicole Ford is co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Arlo Solutions, a minority/veteran/8a/HUBZone-owned and operated business headquartered in Washington, DC. Arlo offers Intelligence, Cybersecurity, and a full range of cutting-edge Program Management and Strategic Communication solutions to the United States Government.
As a government contractor for over 20 years, Lonye has led large teams and managed projects and portfolios ranging from $2M to $1.5B. She developed a myriad of innovative solutions and policies that were implemented at the highest level in the Government, including co-authoring the Air Force Fast Track process, and assessing, developing, and streamlining the United States Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Framework process. Lonye’s strong work ethic, wit, problem-solving skills, and astute business acumen afforded her numerous outstanding performance and leadership awards.
Lonye is a Hampton University graduate. She holds a master’s degree in Business Administration and is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP).