Federal and Defense Textile Summit


MAY 14, 2024
Selling to the Federal Government.
From accepting small credit card purchases to winning multi-year and multi-million-dollar contracts, this session explores the steps and secrets to selling to the Federal Government. The subjects being addressed will include what systems you need to have in place, how to find the end users, and what buyers are looking for.

  • TJ Gilroy, Regional Program Manager, North Carolina Military Business Center

Successful Proposal Writing Techniques for Small Business. Whether you aspire to join the government contracting ecosystem or are already part of it, mastering proposal writing is non-negotiable. Join us for an interactive and energy-filled session where we will share crucial techniques to enhance your proposal preparation skills, elevating your chances of winning contracts and thriving in the competitive landscape.

  • Reena Bhatia, Regional Program Manager, North Carolina Military Business Center

Tools for Success in the Federal Marketplace. There are many effective tools available for FREE to help businesses analyze, understand and successfully engage in federal contracting and subcontracting.  Included in these are the US Census Bureau North American Industry Classification System website; Acquisition.gov; Federal Procurement Data System; USASpending.gov; DLA Internet Bid Board System; DLA Collaboration Folders; System for Award Management; SBA.gov and SBA Dynamic Small Business Search.  This session will provide an overview of these tools and how businesses can use them to develop effective actions, plans and strategies in their efforts to grow their federal government business portfolio.

  • Joe Tew, Regional Program Manager, North Carolina Military Business Center
  • Tim Malone, Database Manager and MatchForce.org Administrator, North Carolina Military Business Center

How to Become a Successful and Profitable Teaming Partner. Join this interactive session to explore proven strategies and insights that will elevate your teaming success as a government contractor. From understanding agency requirements to building new capabilities, discover how to be a sought-after teaming partner without sacrificing profitability. Unlock the keys to thriving in the world of government contracting through invaluable partnerships!

  • Reena Bhatia, Regional Program Manager, North Carolina Military Business Center

Mini Briefs: Textile Technology Innovations - Technology Scouting Showcase. Four select businesses will present their cutting-edge textile technologies in a “Shark Tank” format to a panel of government representatives who will offer feedback and potential collaborations. Select businesses will have 10-minutes for presentation followed by 10-minutes for feedback and Q&A from the government panel. The mini briefs aim to bridge the gap between innovative textile solutions and federal technology needs.  This session is a crucial opportunity for textile innovators to connect with federal technology needs and gain visibility among prime manufacturers and stakeholders in the defense sector.  For consideration, submit a quad chart to burtonr@ncmbc.us by March 29, 2024 at 1700 EST.  Click here to download the quad chart template.  Quad charts will be accepted starting February 16, 2024.  If you have questions contact Bob Burton at burtonr@ncmbc.us.

MAY 15, 2024
The Future of Textile Innovation Panel. The Future of Textile Innovation panel brings together leading experts exploring the evolving frontier of textile innovation, mainly focusing on dynamic and adaptable fabrics, clothing, sensors and equipment that will enhance the complex requirements of modern warfighters. This panel will explore how these advancements translate into military applications, enhancing soldier protection and optimizing mission performance.

The Joint Advanced Planning Brief to Industry (JAPBI) hosted by Defense Logistics Agency in November 2023 identified several key technology and innovation strategies. Government panelists will address these initiatives, particularly in the areas of soldier survivability and protection.

Key topics of discussion may include:

  • Ballistic and Blast Protection: Developments in armor and protective gear to enhance the safety of soldiers against ballistic and blast threats.
  • Signature Management and Spectral Mitigation: Innovations in camouflage and other textile technologies that help avoid detection by enemy forces.
  • Optimized Protection with Reduced Weight: Developing protective equipment that offers high levels of safety while minimizing weight this enhancing soldier mobility and endurance.
  • Arctic Textile Protection: Equipment and technologies for operations in Arctic environments, such as over-the-snow mobility solutions and specialized cold weather gear like fuel handler’s gloves.
  • Wearable Textile Sensor Technologies: Wearable textiles that either monitor warfighter health or optimize combat effectiveness.
  • Testing and Quality Standards Improvements: The government is looking for innovations in testing methodologies and quality standards to ensure the effectiveness and reliability of protective gear. This includes new criteria for ballistic protection testing, such as updated Acceptable Quality Limits (AQL) and back face deformation (BFD) standards.
  • Operational Relevancy of Testing: Improving the operational relevance of testing procedures to ensure that equipment is rigorously evaluated under conditions that closely mimic real-world operational environments.


  • Bob Burton, Interim Director, NC Defense Technology Transition Office
  • Lieutenant Colonel Austin Banford, Project Manager Soldier Survivability (PM SSV), US Army PEO Soldier Survivability
  • Laurra C. Winters, Director, Navy Clothing & Textile Research Facility (NCTRF)
  • Jesse Jur, PhD., Director of Technical Program Development, Advanced Functional Fabrics of America
  • Melissa Sharp, Associate Director, Zeis Textiles Extension at NC State Wilson College of Textiles

Domestic Textile Production: Made in America, Berry Amendment and Defense Production Act.  In this session you will understand the role of the Made in America Office and lobbying efforts from national textile organizations to protect and expand the Berry Amendment. What is the Buy American Act vs. the Berry/Kissell Amendments, and what other laws, Acts, and policies encourage/require procurement of domestic products?  How are these regulations applied to different Federal Agencies and how/why are waivers granted?  How do these policies impact domestic industry, and foreign trade, and how can companies remain competitive?

  • Livia Shmavonian, Director, Made in America, US Office of Management and Budget
  • Kimberly Glas, President & CEO, National Council of Textile Organizations

Defense Logistics Agency Procurement Overview. In this session you will learn from and interact with senior Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) executives and will provide an overview of current textile requirements, fulfillment challenges, future product forecasts and upcoming rebid opportunities. The DLA Clothing & Textile (C&T) Supply Chain provides uniforms, footwear, personal tactical equipment and tentage to US servicemembers, other federal agencies and partner nations. DLA C&T outfits every soldier, sailor, airman and Marine around the world procuring over 8,000 textile product totaling more than 50,000-line items. Other readiness topics include the government’s challenge of reversing a declining US industrial textile base, cyber and supply chain vulnerabilities, and DLA actions taken to improve vendor communications through better demand forecasting and information sharing practices.

  • Steve March, Deputy Director, Clothing and Textiles, Defense Logistics Agency, Troop Support

Operational and Individual Procurement- Leveraging DLA’s TLS Contract. This session will focus on how companies can leverage DLA’s Tailored Logistics Support (TLS) contracts. Participants will learn how to participate in this ten-year $33 billion (maximum value) contract for special operational equipment. The scope of the contract includes tents, special purpose clothing, load bearing equipment, weapons accessories, diving equipment, individual hydration equipment, communication equipment and much more. This contract vehicle is DLA’s primary process to purchase individual equipment that has not been previously issued a national stock number (NSN) and is commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) products.

  • TJ Gilroy, Regional Program Manager, North Carolina Military Business Center

Panel Dialogue with Audience: Sustaining a Berry Compliant US Supply Chain.  This session will include brief remarks from a panel of government, industry and resource organizations focused on the opportunities, challenges and resources available to overcome barriers to business engagement in the defense textile and tactical equipment marketplace.  Extensive interaction, comments and testimonials from audience members – government, industry and academia – are encouraged.  The goal of the session is to highlight and dialogue challenges and potential actions to secure a Berry compliant US supply chain – both prime contractors and component suppliers to the fiber level – in support of DLA, the Services and America’s warfighters.

  • Karla Williams, Supervisory Quality Assurance Specialist, Clothing and Textiles, Defense Logistics Agency, Troop Support
  • Phil Mintz, Executive Director, North Carolina State Industry Expansion Solutions
  • David Costello, Executive Director, Warrior Protection and Readiness Coalition

Government Procurement of Textile Innovation: Industry Perspective. Your company has created a new textile or application…so now what? Learn what the government looks for in textile innovations and how they are driven by established requirements. What company certifications are government agencies looking for, and which tests are mandatory before they will even consider an innovation. Discover methods/strategies you can use to bring your innovation to the right agencies and potentially drive a new requirement. This session will look at these questions from both the government’s point of view, as well as hear from textile businesses who have successfully introduced new textiles or applications to the government.

  • Laurra C. Winters, Director, Navy Clothing & Textile Research Facility (NCTRF)
  • Jonathan Long, President, Silver Oak Leaf
  • Bob Burton, Interim Director, NC Defense Technology Transition Office (DEFTECH)
  • Mark Trexler, Owner / Manager, Survival Innovations, LLC

Military Service Dialogue with Industry. These sessions will discuss (by branch of service or agency) current and programmed future requirements, the acquisition processes, current and future acquisitions, and will dialogue with industry about production capacities and challenges for products within their various commodity categories. Speakers and industry may also dialogue about priorities, production challenges and opportunities to integrate advanced technologies into products within these commodity sectors.

Sessions include:

  • US Navy and US Coast Guard Brief
    • Commander Terri Gabriel, Deputy Commander, Navy Uniforms, Navy Exchange Service Command
    • Laurra C. Winters, Director, Navy Clothing & Textile Research Facility (NCTRF)
    • Nancy Southwick, Director, US Coast Guard Clothing Design and Technical Office
  • US Marine Corps Brief
    • Colonel Paul Gillikin, Program Manager, Marine Corps Systems Command
  • US Air Force, US Space Force & Homeland Security Brief
    • James Lewis, Department of Homeland Security
    • Don Lee, Air Force Life Cycle Management
  • US Army DEVCOM, PEO Soldier & National Guard Brief
    • Colonel Thomas Petzold, Director of Logistics, North Carolina National Guard
    • Lieutenant Colonel Austin Banford, Project Manager Soldier Survivability (PM SSV), US Army PEO Soldier Survivability
    • Ken Ryan, DEVCOM Soldier Center Soldier Protection Directorate