Prairie Quest Consulting wins Small Business Administration award

09 May 2019 2 min. read

Fort Wayne, Indiana–based advisory firm Prairie Quest Consulting has been named the 8(a) Graduate Firm of the Year by the US Small Business Administration (SBA), a government agency which supports entrepreneurs and small business owners. 

Founded in 2004 by Stacey Smith, Prairie Quest Consulting (PQC) provides project management, training, and IT management support to local and federal government clients, as well as the private sector. The firm’s IT services range from software and web development to Google Cloud advisory work, while its training offering focuses on vocational rehabilitation and pre-employment training.

PQC has worked with numerous high-profile public sector clients, including the US Army, the FDA, and FEMA. The company has over 200 employees in 24 states across the country.

Before founding PQC, Stacey Smith had a 25-year career in project management, working as a senior project manager at Lincoln Financial Group and Lockheed Martin. In the process of growing her consultancy, Smith participated in the SBA’s 8(a) Business Development program, a nine-year program which provides socially and economically disadvantaged firms access to government contracting opportunities and business training/counseling.Prairie Quest Consulting wins Small Business Administration awardThe SBA has named PQC its 2019 8(a) Graduate Firm of the Year as part of its National Small Business Week Awards (May 5-11). The award ceremony was held on May 6 at the US Institute of Peace in Washington, DC. MedVed Global, Inc., an 8(a)-certified construction company, was named the National Small Business Prime Contractor of the Year, while Admiral Engineering & Manufacturing Company, Inc., a precision manufacturing firm for the aerospace, defense, space, medical, and technology industries, was named the National Subcontractor of the Year.

Management and technology consultancy Booz Allen, meanwhile, won the "services" category Dwight D. Eisenhower Award for Excellence – which recognizes large prime contractors that have excelled in utilization of small businesses as suppliers and subcontractors. In 2018, the firm awarded 67.2% in subcontracts to small businesses, for a total of $915.6 million in contract value.

According to the SBA, over $105.7 billion of all federal contracts were awarded to small businesses in the 2017 fiscal year, the largest amount ever awarded to small businesses. The contract total translates to more than 584,000 jobs, according to the agency.