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Baird’s Jean Stack Wins 3rd Wash100 in Light of Industry-Shifting M&A Deals & Community Amplification

Executive Mosaic is thrilled to recognize the achievements and impact of Baird Managing Director Jean Stack with the 2023 Wash100 Award. Stack demonstrated immense contributions to the government contracting world throughout the course of the last year, in the form of overseeing major mergers and acquisitions deals and organizing pivotal, community-focused events.

The Wash100 is an annual celebration of the leaders who drive value toward and shape the vast GovCon space. EM began the tradition 10 years ago with the intention of creating a yearly guide to enshrine the work of those who have both made a huge impact during the preceding year and promise to be enormous change-makers in the future. Hundreds of candidates are evaluated for their vision, leadership, innovation and reliability, among other factors.

If you have not yet voted in the nail-biting, extremely fun Wash100 popular vote contest, do yourself a favor and visit Wash100.com to cast your 10 votes today! Voting closes April 28.

2023 marks the third induction of Stack to the Wash100, following wins in 2019 and 2022. She is the MD in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin-headquartered investment firm and financial services company’s global technology and services team. Additionally, she is co-head of its government and defense investment banking practice, which she administers alongside John Song, a prior Wash100 recipient.

Stack came to Baird with Song and Alex Sevilla, another current Baird MD, from Houlihan Lokey, where the executives stood up the aerospace, defense and government services group and gained extensive experience through notable transactions such as the sale of PAE to Platinum Equity; Accenture’s acquisition of Agilex; and divestitures in service of CSC, Leidos and EADS.

A tradition Stack and Song brought over from their prior employer is their widely attended, yearly Government and Defense Conference, now in its fifth year hosted by Baird. The event brings together private sector juggernauts, government leaders and industry experts to speak to the issues of the day and perform a temperature check on the state of GovCon at large. 2022’s edition hosted a whopping 1,400 people virtually and in person at the Ritz Carlton in McLean, Virginia and was widely covered and discussed in the media.

During her remarks at the conference in November, Stack spoke to the undeniable shockwaves the Russian invasion of Ukraine has sent throughout the federal sector and the reactions it has caused.

“It’s finally a nonpartisan issue. There is equal energy around defense from both Republicans and Democrats—there is nobody not saying that defense isn’t important. We are now the most important industry,” Stack commented.

Speaking exclusively to GovCon Wire during the event, she described how M&A deals were at such a fever pitch in 2021, that they inevitably cooled off in 2022 as companies planned their next move and were more conservative about resources.

This however, did not seem to stop the unrelenting pace of her work advising M&A deals in the government and defense markets with Baird.

In March 2022, Baird was exclusive financial advisor to intelligence, defense and deployed mission support technology company EverWatch in its acquisition by GovCon heavyweight Booz Allen Hamilton. The former organization’s software development, advanced analytics and cloud capabilities are seen as a good fit with Booz Allen’s full-spectrum cyber operations, mission analytics and 5G and AI portfolio.

“Congratulations to EverWatch and Enlightenment Capital! [It was] great partnering with Devin Talbott, Jason Rigoli, John Hillen and the entire EverWatch Team [and] a true pleasure working with Matt Calderone and Chrissy Cox at Booz Allen Hamilton,” Stack enthused in a LinkedIn post following the transaction’s announcement.

Baird’s team, co-led by Stack, additionally provided financial advisement for Guidehouse and its parent company Veritas Capital on the acquisition of the government consultancy Grant Thornton Public Sector Advisory in October 2022.

“Congratulations Scott McIntyre, Aneal Krishnan and Ramzi Musallam,” Stack wrote on LinkedIn, effectively mentioning two other fellow Wash100 Award winners in McIntyre and Mussallam. “Another franchise transaction for the industry and great addition to the Guidehouse team!”

Finally, Stack and her cohort ended the year with a grand finale: in December 2022, IBM inked a deal to purchase government technology services company Octo from Arlington Capital Partners. Baird was the financial adviser to Arlington and Octo for the transaction. Through the deal, IBM’s U.S. public and federal market organization, a function of its consulting arm, will absorb 1,500 Octo team members.

Executive Mosaic congratulates Jean Stack and the entire Baird government and defense investment banking practice on its exemplary year and resulting Wash100 Award. May 2023 be even more plentiful!

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