Maine PTAC’s Ken Bloch Receives Outstanding Member Achievement Award and Voted PresidentPosted on April 1, 2021 | News
Gallatin, TN April 1, 2021 – The Association of Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (APTAC) is pleased to announce that Ken Bloch, Program Manager of the Maine Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC), has been recognized with the association’s 2021 Betty McDonald Outstanding Member Achievement Award and has been voted President-Elect.
Ken has been the Program Manager of the Maine PTAC since 2015. Born in Maine, he grew up in the greater Boston area and has a degree in government from Suffolk University and over 27 years in defense procurement. He has lived and worked in many parts of the world both as a contractor and a civil servant. His favorite posting was as a NATO civilian in Brussels, Belgium. That stretch included the collapse of the Berlin Wall and Soviet Union, as well as the first Gulf war.
Returning to the States, Ken did systems engineering work and later built data centers for GTE, finally moving back to Maine 10 years ago. Before taking over the Maine PTAC, he served as contracts administrator for a Maine PTAC client.
He lives in the greater Bangor area and enjoys hiking, snowshoeing, and kayaking.
Ken, working with Darryl Thomas and John Erdmann, both of APTAC, took on a serious challenge that was confronting APTAC, and through his efforts, secured a very satisfactory outcome.
To secure suitable venues at optimal rates for APTAC Training Conferences, APTAC books many years in advance. Typically, these bookings have very substantial cancellation fees, and are accompanied by minimum room occupancy thresholds. Prior to 2020, APTAC had never experienced a traumatic event comparable to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Spring 2020 conference, held in the early days of the pandemic, was characterized by many cancellations and a significant attendance shortfall. The hotel held APTAC to the letter of our contract, and APTAC took a substantial financial loss on the conference. Even though APTAC was protected with event insurance, clauses were in place that would not cover pandemics. It immediately became clear to APTAC’s Board that a similar or worse financial exposure might accompany APTAC’s Fall 2020, and eventually Spring 2021 conferences. It became clear that there was an urgent need to negotiate with the Hyatt Capitol Hill in DC and the Coeur D’Alene Resort venues to avert a financial disaster that could threaten the survival of APTAC as we know it. Ken and his team took this challenge on and eventually avoided a loss on these conferences while maintaining a good working relationship with Hyatt going forward.
Ken’s professionalism, coupled with his commitment to fair dealing and win-win solutions, along with his sincere, approachable personality and indefatigable sense of humor enabled an optimal outcome for APTAC and its members.
Betty McDonald was a founder and the first president of APTAC, (then known as the Association of Government Marketing Assistance Specialists). This award, named in her honor, recognizes a significant contribution and deep commitment not just to the procurement profession, but to the APTAC organization and its members.
APTAC is the professional organization of and for the Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (PTACs) sponsored by the Defense Department’s Defense Logistics Agency and local host organizations. APTAC supports the PTACs by providing them critical updates on the ever-changing procurement processes across all federal agencies; comprehensive training opportunities and certification; and a national presence to collaborate with federal agencies on small business contracting initiatives and otherwise provide a voice in national government contracting assistance and policy arenas.
Maine PTAC provides training and technical assistance to local businesses statewide so they can find, win and perform on government contracts. As part of a nationwide network of Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (PTACs), our partnerships and in-depth knowledge of government contracting gives businesses the tools to sell their goods/services to local, state and federal governments.