2019 SBC Keynote Speakers Dallas, TX
Co-Founder and CEO
Combat Flip Flops
Matthew “Griff” Griffin is the co-founder and CEO of Combat Flip Flops, a footwear and apparel company that sells goods manufactured in conflict and post-conflict zones. Griffin founded Combat Flip Flops in 2006, after graduating from West Point and serving four tours of duty as an Army Ranger in Afghanistan and Iraq. The company uses their profits to aid the areas in which they are made as a part of Griffin’s mission to encourage peace through trade and “business over bullets.” A powerful and emotional speaker, Griffin is known for a moving TEDx talk on the power of persistence, creativity, and respect, as well as for his successful appearance on the entrepreneurial television show Shark Tank, where he secured a deal with not only one but three “sharks” including Mark Cuban. Exclusively represented by Leading Authorities speakers bureau, Griffin is a firm believer that “anything worth doing is worth overdoing” and shares his inspiring and motivating story of chasing big goals and creating positive change with audiences globally.
Office of Contracting & Business Development
U.S. Small Business Administration
Robb Wong was sworn in as Associate Administrator, Office of Government Contracting and Business Development (GCBD) in March of 2017 where he advocates for small businesses and represents them on behalf of the President of the United States. Robb has a depth of experience focused on small business. He started his career as an SBA attorney in the Office of General Counsel then was a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Houston District Office and later was the SBA acting District Director/Counsel in the Lubbock District Office. From 1996 to 2017 Robb was CEO for several small businesses that successfully used SBA’s products and programs to enhance their growth. His SBA experience, coupled with his business acumen, fuels his passion to promote the growth of today’s small businesses in the federal marketplace. Robb’s philosophy is cemented in the belief that small businesses are the job generators that will help make America great again. He is a graduate of Georgetown University Law Center. Historically, the AA/GCBD oversees over $500 billion in total federal spending within the federal market place and helps ensure that small businesses can compete for federal opportunities.
Peforming the Duties of the Assistant Secretary of The Navy (Energy, Installations and Environment)
The Honorable Lucian Niemeyer assumed his responsibilities 26 June 2019 to include oversight and policy for Navy and Marine Corps facilities sustainment, restoration and modernization; military construction; acquisition, utilization and disposal of real property and facilities; environmental protection, planning, restoration and natural resources conservation; and safety and occupational health.
In August 2017, he was appointed by the President and confirmed by Congress as the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Energy, Installations, and Environment. In this role, he provided budgetary, policy and management oversight of the Department of Defense’s real property portfolio, which encompasses 28 million acres, over 500 installations with over 500,000 buildings and structures valued at a trillion dollars. Upon successful integration of the EI&E portfolio into the newly created Sustainment portfolio, Secretary Niemeyer served the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment as a Strategic Advisor. His specific focus was on Defense energy resilience and cybersecurity programs responsible for enhancing the Department’s planning, programs, and military capabilities to provide mission assurance through installation and operational energy and cybersecurity resilience policy development, and execution of initiatives for domestic and overseas installations.
Prior to his appointment, Secretary Niemeyer worked in the private sector from 2014 to 2017 as the founder of The Niemeyer Group, LLC. From 2003 to 2014 he served on the professional staff of the United States Senate Committee on Armed Services where he was responsible for a wide portfolio of national security programs, including military installations, ranges, world-wide basing, energy programs, facility privatization initiatives, military budgets, unit readiness, industrial base, and environmental issues. He also provided oversight for military logistics and sustainment programs as well as Air Force and Navy acquisition programs.
Secretary Niemeyer is an Air Force veteran, retiring in 2008 at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel with 15 years of active and five years of Virginia Air National Guard service working within the installation engineering and military plans community. He holds a Bachelor of Architecture, from the University of Notre Dame, a Master of Business Administration from The George Washington University, and a Master of National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College.