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Lynn Fosse, Senior Editor

Steve Alexander, Associate Editor

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Valerie Austin - Editorial Associate


DSFederal, Inc. is connecting Federal Agencies with the brightest minds in Data Analytics and Health IT

Sophia Parker

Chief Executive Officer

DSFederal, Inc.


Nicholas Foley

(301) 938-8915

Interview conducted by:

Lynn Fosse, Senior Editor, CEOCFO Magazine, Published – November 25, 2019

CEOCFO: Ms. Parker, would you tell us about DSFederal?

Ms. Parker: DSFederal is a federal IT contractor. We specialize in data analytics and health IT.

CEOCFO: Your tagline is “Connecting the Dots,” what does that mean and how are you doing that?

Ms. Parker: That is what we are all about. We connect the brightest minds and we connect our clients with the industry’s best. We also connect different companies. If I see company A has a requirement that I feel someone else is better suited to be a part of, I will connect them. I am always introducing people, helping people to connect and I think that is a value we bring. We are about connecting bright minds to deliver the best product or solution for the government.

CEOCFO: Would you give us a couple of project examples?

Ms. Parker: For example, in a recent meeting at NIH, they were looking to combine several contracts into one. We explained to the client that by working together with partner companies, we can better serve them. We were able to convince them because we have a reputation for working well with partners. Because of that, NIH benefits and we are all able to grow and succeed.

CEOCFO: What type of projects do you tend to bid on?

Ms. Parker: The projects that we pursue are focused on improving health, either the quality of the healthcare delivery, or by helping clients such as NIH and FDA to get better data in their hands to make better decisions. For example, we might help build a website that is outward-facing for agencies to communicate their vision and mission to the general public, but also develop a back-end database that allows them collect critical information regarding programs that they fund, such as agricultural information. We specialize in collecting and analyzing reports that explain data to our clients.

CEOCFO: What do you understand about doing those things that perhaps less experienced people do not recognize?

Ms. Parker: We have a better way of displaying and identifying data so people will be able to come to the right conclusion, especially when it comes to health data. With health data you might have billions of records, and through our support, they can much more easily pinpoint the issues and therefore they can provide a cure. Displaying data and information is so important; it helps executives at CIO levels or the agency level to easily identify problems. Otherwise, it would take them a long time to really get to the bottom of the issues. That data analysis part – data display, data security and data integrity – is so important. The government recognizes that as well. That is why we have legislation such as the DATA Act; because we need to harmonize federal data elements in order for the government to better assess spending across agencies. That is a very critical service that we provide our clients.

CEOCFO: What has changed in your approach over time?  What have you learned as you worked on more and more products?

Ms. Parker: I learned that we need to deeply understand our clients’ mission. In the beginning we were just thinking about solving the requirements on hand, but we did not have the sophistication to understand why and the impact. Now we use more sophisticated tools and we are smarter and ask better questions. For example, as a small company we invest in Gartner services, and we ask Gartner to provide us with the research results on the really important issues and trends, such as blockchain or cloud migration. What are the real issues and what is the next step? We pay more attention and have a more global view because we are more sophisticated.

CEOCFO: Would you tell us about community involvement for DSFederal?

Ms. Parker: From day one, I had a clear vision about giving back. As soon as I started the company and we had revenue, we set up the foundation and it has always been about helping to educate young girls. The Afghanistan refugees, the African orphans, and people living with AIDS. Those were our initial charity targets. We then branched out to helping Syrian refugees. We donate money and we work with organizations that educate children. Educating young girls is something that I am passionate about.

CEOCFO: What is next for DSFederal?

Ms. Parker: We are focusing on solving more complex challenges for our clients, paying more attention to consulting. We have the capability. We have hired statisticians, biologists and MPHs, in order to implement more sophisticated processes.

CEOCFO: Why now?

Ms. Parker: We are more mature and we have the infrastructure. In the first ten years, we were in survival mode. But now that we have laid the foundation, employees have been with me seven and even eight years. Our reputation is flawless and I think all the pieces have come together.

CEOCFO: Would you tell us about the corporate culture at DSFederal and how you encourage employees and set the tone for the company?

Ms. Parker: Our culture is about integrity, meaning you do what you say even if nobody is watching. We deliver results, and everyone matters which is very important to me. If we promise our client we will do something, then we do it. That is part of the integrity. Because of the emphasis on core values, we have a very distinct culture. It is not about more money and more revenue; higher margins and less benefits for our people. We do not have to do any of that. We just focus on doing the right thing and the rest will come. God has been taking good care of us – we are solid and going into our thirteenth year. We are in control of our destiny. Our customers are number one.

CEOCFO: Would you tell us about your book, The Alchemy of Hope?

Ms. Parker: It is in circulation on Amazon and it is a best-seller. It is a book about how I overcame a lot of challenges. This is a great country and if you work hard, you will see results. It is about my journey as an immigrant and about the abundance of opportunity in this country.

CEOCFO: Why choose DSFederal?

Ms. Parker: We bring value and we are passionate about our clients and about helping them achieve their mission and their vision. We say what we do and we do what we say.

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“We bring value and we are passionate about our clients and about helping them achieve their mission and their vision. We say what we do and we do what we say.” - Sophia Parker