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April 10, 2008
 
       
 

MERGER MADNESS


 

After nine months of flirting, the Information Technology Association of America and the Government Electronics and Information Technology Association declared themselves an official match at last week's Reagan Center announcement of their merger. The combined forces will be known as simply ITAA until they come up with a new name. (We are willing to extend our good offices for a contest.)

 
 

CEO of the new (and old) ITAA Phil Bond, ITAA board member Hank Steininger of Grant Thornton, and Potomac Forum president Art Chantker. (And yes, folks, that is the real Art Chantker, whom we misidentified in an earlier issue.) The new ITAA will have 28 board members, made up of the old ITAA's 14-member board, GEIA's 11-member executive committee, and three additional GEIA members. Phil tells us that the more than 15 IT trade organizations in existence are simply too many, which hinders IT in need of a single, strong voice on legislative issues such as procurement and immigration. He thinks this merger makes ITAA the preeminent IT organization for government and others to look to.

 

 

ITAA board member Gerry Robbins of Northrop and Dan Heinemeier, CEO of the old GEIA and COO of the new ITAA. Dan is all about fiscal responsibility. The merger left the organization with two offices 11 blocks from each other in Arlington. Dan's GEIA office was the one that closed, so to save money he boxed up his stuff and carried it over instead of hiring movers. Members have to like the way this man thinks (unless he got a bad back from the lifting and needs workers comp).

 

 

ITAA board member Larry Reagan of PRICE Systems, Quest Software's Harold Youra, and ITAA board member Desiree Campbell of Cigital. Campbell said the best thing about the merger is that government clients that often heard from both organizations will have a single contact. And of course, the bigger organization will speak more forcefully on policy issues. Ahh, the power of love.

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