SBA Leadership Bios

Ms. DeVries has been selected to serve as the Associate Administrator in SBA's Office of Investment & Innovation. In this role, Ms. DeVries serves as a senior executive providing guidance and leadership for programs that provide the high-growth small business community with access to financial capital and R&D funds to support innovation.

Ms. DeVries is an experienced private markets, institutional asset management, and government contracting executive with over 17 years of combined experience in business strategy, asset management, government contracting, and investments. She most recently served as a Venture Partner at Trail Mix Ventures (TMV) where she dedicated her time to the firm's financially inclusive investments. Previously, Ms. DeVries served in a senior leadership role at Greenspring Associates where she spearheaded efforts to commit capital to female and ethnically diverse-led fund managers. Prior to Greenspring, Ms. DeVries was an executive with T. Rowe Price Associates. She served in a senior role at Sotera Defense Solutions, a national security, defense and intelligence solutions company. She began her career in Washington, D.C. at Corporate Executive Board (CEB, now Gartner Research) in the firm's financial services practice.

Ms. DeVries holds an M.B.A. from Georgetown University, an M.S. from Northwestern University, and a B.A. from Wake Forest University. Ms. DeVries is an advocate for women in private equity, serving on the Private Equity Women Investor Network's (PEWIN) Foundation leadership task force.

Mr. John Williams is Director of Innovation and Technology for the Office of Investment and Innovation (OII) within the US Small Business Administration (SBA). Mr. Williams’ primary responsibility is to serve as senior principal for the Federal policy implementation, and programmatic oversight, of the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs across all 11 participating agencies.

Prior to joining the SBA in December of 2014, Mr. Williams served as the Director of the Navy SBIR and STTR programs. While at the Navy, Mr. Williams conceptualized the Transition Assistance Program (TAP), an 11 month program to educate and assist Navy Phase II awardees in the Technology Transition process. Commercialization of technologies developed under the SBIR and STTR program was a major focus of his work. Through Mr. Williams’ leadership the Navy led the way in supporting the acquisition and transition of SBIR/STTR seeded technologies, awarding more Phase III contracts than the rest of the DOD combined. His career with the Navy spanned 27 years, including positions at the Naval Surface Warfare Center, the Naval Sea Systems Command, and the Office of Naval Research.

As a result of his endeavors and distinguished leadership, Mr. Williams been recognized via prestigious accolades such as the Tibbetts Award and Hammer Prize, and has been a featured speaker at The National SBIR Conference, Navy Opportunity Forum, Defense Energy Summit, NCET2, Cleantech Open, and The National Academies (NAS, NAE, IOM & NRC).

Mr. Williams is a member of the Senior Executive Service (SES), with a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Maryland College Park, and a Masters in Engineering Management-Marketing of Technology from George Washington University.

Erick Page-Littleford serves as Senior Technology Policy Advisor for the SBA’s Office of Investment and Innovation (OII). This role leverages his significant experience supporting the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, including serving in principal roles executing innovator engagements, program evaluations, and implementing congressional and administrative policy.

Prior to joining SBA, Erick served as a program manager, with a Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business, leading a team supporting the Department of the Navy’s SBIR and STTR programs. Erick earned his B.S. in Public Policy and his M.S. in Science, Technology & Public Policy from Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT). He is also certified by the Project Management Institute as a Project Management Professional and by the Scrum Alliance as a Certified Scrum Master.

Elden Hawkes serves as the Partnership and Innovation Specialist, a role that supports the advancement of the Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Technology Transfer (SBIR/ STTR) programs. His primary duties include managing the agency’s Federal and State Technology (FAST) Partnership Program. Other duties include outreach efforts targeting Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) and SBIR Road Tours.

Prior to SBA, Elden spent seven years with USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) where he helped grow the USDA’s SBIR program as its program specialist and program manager. He holds a degree in Environmental Science/Marine Science and a Master’s in Food and Agricultural Science, both from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.

John Verostek serves as a Data Scientist for the SBA’s Office of Investment and Innovation (OII). His primary responsibilities are helping to manage data pertaining to the SBIR/STTR programs, and to perform data analysis across a broad spectrum of initiatives.

Prior to joining SBA he had worked at Dawnbreaker as a Data Scientist supporting SBA OII. He recently performed industry analysis for a study of women’s participation within the SBIR/STTR programs. His work experience also includes having worked at Tech Link Center as an Economic Researcher for a series of DOD SBIR/STTR Economic Impact Studies. His role on these studies spanned interviewing SBIR/STTR awardees about their experiences and project outcomes, as well as integrating data from multiple government databases, and analyzing economic data using advanced techniques such as machine learning. His SBIR/STTR experience also includes working as a Commercialization Analyst for Foresight Science and Technology.

John completed PhD studies in Business Strategy & Innovation at Boston University, as well as obtaining an MBA from Case Western Reserve University. He had in his first career earned an undergraduate degree in Microelectronic Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology, and worked as an engineer at Texas Instruments and Medtronic.