CDCA 12th Annual Defense Summit in Charleston, SC Focused On Modernization

Charleston Defense Contractors Association’s (CDCA) Annual Defense Summit, “Modernization & Networking Hub for the IT Enterprise” Brings Together Public and Private Sectors

CHARLESTON, SC – Sept. 20, 2018 – The Charleston Defense Contractors Association (CDCA)—a non-profit defense advocacy group—today announced registration is open for the CDCA’s 12th Annual Defense Summit.

As the premier forum in the southeast for networking, education, and collaboration around defense readiness and modernization solutions, the 2018 Defense Summit—held Dec. 4-6, 2018 at the Charleston Convention Center—is a must-attend event for government agency and defense industry leaders.


Leading event sponsors who have committed to the success of this annual event include:  Accelera Solutions, AT&T, BCF Solutions, CACI, Dell, Guidehouse, ISHPI, KBRWyle, ManTech, McAfee, NSSPlus, Parsons, Patricio Enterprises, ProSoDel, Red Hat, Red River Technology, Scientific Research Corporation, and VMWare.

The defense contractor sector continues to thrive and grow throughout the Lowcountry as Charleston and the surrounding region continues to attract more investment in the areas of engineering, digital, IT and cyber capabilities, augmenting the large aviation and automotive industrial base, including Boeing and Volvo. Highlights include:

·         The 2017 Economic Impact Study conducted by the South Carolina Military Base Task Force reported a statewide defense industry economic impact of more than $24B (8.4%) and more than 181,000 jobs.  Those numbers include 752 defense contractor companies executing more than $2B in defense contracts.
·         Charleston-based Space and Naval Systems Center Atlantic launched the Information Warfare Research Project, an innovative consortium-based agreement to incentivize research and development and prototyping earlier this year. This initiative opens opportunities to both traditional and nontraditional defense contractors.
·         Lockheed Martin selected Greenville, SC as the production location of F-35 and F-16 fighter jets, projecting a hiring demand for more than 160 people.
·         Beaufort, SC Marine Corps Air Station Pilot Training Center houses state-of-the-art full mission simulators for the F-35. The air station is the second highest tasked aviation unit in the Marine Corps and projected to increase over time to 106,000 operations per year.

“With the increased Department of Defense spending bill to $700B, the defense industry continues to increase the adoption of new cloud and cyber technologies rapidly. This focus is critical to help our nation address the true challenges of cyber warfare,” said Josh Hatter, CDCA President. “To ensure we are fully prepared to fight enemies on today’s virtual battlefield, the time for digital transformation and modernization is now. The Defense Summit creates a platform to delve into these strategic conversations.”

Attendees are sure to experience the latest in end-to-end IT enterprise technology and its impact on defense and national security while gaining unprecedented access to key decision-makers.  Included in the agenda is a ‘speed-networking’ event that gives attendees a chance to speak with and meet key DoD officials.

“The Defense Summit is a wonderful venue to engage with industry, academia, and meet the people that make the magic happen in both the industry and across the SPAWAR Enterprise. At this event, you'll interact with thought-leaders, thinkers, engineers, and designers. The Defense Summit is a great place to connect with the people that make the capabilities we need come to life,” said RADM Christian Becker, Commander, Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command at the CDCA’s 11th Annual Defense Summit.

 This year’s Summit topics include the 12 points of National Defense Strategy, Rapid Innovation, Unmanned Systems, Internet of Things, and Cyber Hardening.

 Early confirmed government and industry participants include:
·    Marianne Bailey, Deputy National Manager for National Security Systems, National Security Agency
·    Kevin M. Fahey, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Acquisition
·    Francis “Frank” L. Kelley, Jr., Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Unmanned Systems
·    Ruth Youngs Lew, Navy Program Executive Officer for Enterprise Information Systems
·    William S. Williford III, Executive Director of Marine Corps Systems Command

 This year the CDCA also unveils the first annual Innovation Spotlight Competition where companies can compete for the most innovative product. Sponsored by Booz Allen Hamilton, competitors can showcase innovative C5ISR, information warfare, or cybersecurity products. Conference attendee votes will determine the winner announced on Thursday, Dec. 6. (Applications to participate are due no later than Oct. 15.)

 With months of exciting developments still to come, this Summit promises to be a must-do conference for any leader in government and defense.

 Register for the CDCA Defense Summit now and save! Go to:

 About Charleston Defense Contractors Association

Charleston Defense Contractors Association (CDCA) is an association of organizations and individual professionals dedicated to preserving, strengthening and continuing to grow the defense industry and its affiliated-organizations in Charleston, South Carolina, and its immediate surrounding region.  Since its inception in December 2002, the CDCA has worked to address issues facing the continually changing landscape that is Charleston’s defense industry presence and ensure that it continues to be a thriving, sustained business opportunity in Charleston, South Carolina. For further information, visit us at

Media Contact:
Michelle Van Jura, Intersect Communications

Joy Capps, Intersect Communications




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