CULTIVA was founded by James Gordon and Eric Myers in 2011 to provide an independent platform for academic recruiting and workforce development initiatives. Based in Northern Virginia, CULTIVA supports workforce development initiatives for universities, public and private partnerships, non-profit collaborations, economic development initiatives, and state and federal workforces.

Since 2016, CULTIVA has also supported workforce development and international education initiatives in partnerships in Africa, South America, and Asia. CULTIVA launched a workforce development initiative in early 2020 to help leverage the connections it had made from years working with groups like Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and a number of other development-minded small businesses owned by African-Americans. These institutions provide a ready, willing and able stream of graduates, alumni, and qualified subcontractors.

Armed with a contract to support Virginia’s 39 public universities that include a number of HBCUs and with hundreds of commercial suppliers in its database, CULTIVA’s staff facilitate these connections by matching its network of diverse businesses to the agencies and prime contractors looking to fulfill their diversity requirements.

Thanks to several policy improvements in recent years, more federal dollars are earmarked for more diverse small businesses than ever before. But earmarking and awarding contracts are two very different things, and CULTIVA Global has stepped in to bridge the supplier diversity gap.

“The biggest thing we realized was that agencies and prime contractors have these staff and supplier diversity requirements they’re trying to fill,” CULTIVA’s CEO James Gordon said, “but they don’t know where to find qualified candidates or companies. That’s where we come in.”

Once a supplier need is identified, CULTIVA can help both sides of the equation. Its team helps prime contractors make the connection, vet the potential subcontractor, and take care of all paperwork involved. Working with the diverse supplier, CULTIVA will help them go through the appropriate certifications and provide the background information required to help a prime contractor or federal agency document its requirement compliance.

One of CULTIVA’s most recent successes has been a contract to work on an African Cybersecurity Initiative to develop pilot cybersecurity education programs with the governments of Burkina Faso, Benin and Cameroon. This contract will require a number of subcontractors due to the complexity of developing sustainable programs that can be utilized in advanced higher education, and CULTIVA will begin fleshing out requirements this fall.

With the Small Business Administration’s stated contract award goals for diverse businesses adding up to 16% of the estimated $600 billion in federal 2020 contract spending, access to these programs is worth US$96 billion of spending going directly to building smaller businesses so that they can compete today and grow stronger tomorrow. CULTIVA is looking forward to being a part of the solution.

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For more information, please contact James Gordon at