She wears many hats in rapidly growing firm
Amy Martin has schooled herself on the intricacies of government contracts since joining Chantilly-based American Cyber Inc. in 2013. The woman-owned company provides IT support to the federal government.
“It’s challenging because I have been learning a new industry,” says Martin, who previously worked in construction. “I’m learning the accounting side, but I’m also learning government lingo and about government contracts. That was, and still is at times, a challenge.”
Martin appreciates the variety of tasks that her job involves. “It’s not only numbers that I work with. Because we are small, we wear many hats,” she says. “I enjoy being part of every aspect of the company. I get the opportunity to help with proposals, review contracts, etc. The variety keeps me on my toes.”
In addition to her duties as CFO, Martin’s responsibilities include all contract administration and human resources activities as well as developing and auditing internal processes and procedures related to its International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 9001, 20000 and 27001 certifications and its Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI) Level 3 services appraisal.
During her time at the company, it has expanded to 12 states and four continents. “Amy researched each state’s business and tax requirements and the myriad of laws regulating international trade,” says Laurie Winkler, the company’s chair and CEO. “She worked closely with government regulators, lawyers and accountants to obtain licenses to work in the various states as well as other countries.”
Martin, a self-described Army brat, has been interested in numbers since she was young. “I’ve always been a math girl,” says the James Madison University alum.
The CFO describes herself as a perfectionist. “That can be good and bad,” she says. “If I make a mistake, I can be hard on myself, but I do learn from my mistakes. I try and give my all to the company.”
American Cyber received SmartCEO magazine’s GovStar Award for the best emerging company in 2016 and has been named to Inc. 5000’s list of fastest growing private companies in the U.S. for the past three years.
Martin was instrumental in American Cyber being selected for participation in the Department of Defense Mentor/Protégé Program. Last year, it received the DoD’s Nunn-Perry Award, the top recognition for a protégé company.
“The best-business processes and practices she implemented five years ago have allowed us to seamlessly grow our workforce by 500 percent and our revenue by 800 percent,” says Winkler. “Amy is one of our most valued employees. She works above and beyond the norms of a CFO and thinks out of the box, which is so critical with a young, growing company.”
Martin is credited with helping American Cyber hire people with the right skills and keep employee turnover to a minimum. “When I started we had between 10 and 15 employees, and now we have 65,” she says. “Being part of that growth and hard work is what I am most proud of.”
Martin focuses on what it takes to produce the best “long-term results for the company,” says Jackie Asencio, president of C2 Essentials Inc. in Chantilly. “Amy is very forward thinking and creative in her approach to decision making, taking care to understand how her decisions will affect other aspects of the company’s operations.”
Martin’s natural appetite for learning “drives her not only to ask good questions but also to seek the possible solutions for the challenges she faces as CFO,” Asencio adds. “She has become a ‘go-to’ person for solutions.”