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The Rylex Management Team

Tamara Tran, President and COO

Tamara began her professional career in 1990 working as a mortgage loan processor for First Security Bank while attending BYU. At FSB she specialized in FHA new residential construction loans, learning the ins and outs of federal lending regulations and banking compliance. Her work in mortgage and residential development led to a successful career as a senior commercial loan officer specializing in multimillion-dollar development lending. She worked for Richards Woodbury and pioneered their in-house pilot lending program, Wardley Financial. Along the way she decided to learn about escrow and title in order to fully understand the real estate and lending industry. She worked for Realty Title managing their Davis County office and served as an escrow agent. Her lending and title experience was key preparation for her ownership of Rylex.

In 1991 Tamara reapplied for "sponsorship" of Ly's immediate family members living in their native Vietnam. This time the applications were approved and she and her husband of one year sponsored the immigration of all seven of his immediate family to the United States, where they continue to reside as naturalized U.S. citizens. Tamara cofounded Rylex with her husband Ly in 2004 after he came to her with an "idea and a dream." She embraced this new challenge of creating a company from nothing by writing articles of organization, creating bylaws, licensing, and filing. She immersed herself in research and began learning everything possible about the success and management of a profitable business.

In 2007 she wrote and submitted the application for the SBA 8(a) Small Disadvantaged Business Program. In 2008 she created the proposal for a GSA schedule 70 contract, which is ongoing. In 2012 Tamara wrote and created a joint venture with their JV partner, which has been approved by the SBA.

As with all small-business owners, Tamara continues to wear multiple hats at Rylex, where she has been the proposal writer/manager, project manager, HR manager, business developer, compliance officer, the entire accounting department, and much more. Today her primary roles are president/CFO and facility security/compliance officer. Her management style is to hire skilled professionals and then stand down, giving them freedom to do what they do best. Her confidence in others' abilities allows them the flexibility to explore solutions and create the outstanding results that customers and employees expect from Rylex.

Tamara believes the key to success in life are rooted in gratitude. Her commitment to "leave every person and situation in better shape than she found them" is echoed by the Rylex project managers and team leads and evident by their excellent examples and service to their customers and fellow employees. She is active within several professional organizations and enjoys mentoring other women. She has taught kickboxing, martial arts, and multiple youth fitness programs. She is a second-degree black belt in Shin-Toshi, Moo Duk Kwan.

Tamara is currently writing her first book, which will be published in 2016. She and Ly have two children, Ryan and Alexa.

Ly M. Tran

Prior to cofounding Rylex, Ly spent the previous 18 years in computer and office supply sales. He developed a reputation during these many years as a hero, often "saving the day" with his personal service. He is a master at building and maintaining relationships, and is well known for his integrity and dedication. Ly's life epitomizes the classic, inspiring American immigrant story. He escaped his native country, Vietnam, in the early 1970s. He was a child refugee, commonly referred to as a "boat person," who was lucky enough to obtain passage on an Panamanian cargo ship as it traveled through Malaysia. As a 12-year-old alone in a foreign country, Ly survived by working hard, staying true to his word, and by sharing his enthusiasm for life and his love for those around him. These values are deeply rooted in his management style and evident in Rylex's corporate environment. Ly is a true American patriot—proud to the core, grateful for his American citizenship, and committed to his role as a quality provider of goods and services that support the Department of Defense and the federal government. Ly actively participates with the Boy Scouts of America and with his church and community, where he is often found helping neighbors and friends with various projects. He is an avid racquetball player, an occasional golfer, and loyal sports enthusiast.

Tracy Phillips

Tracy Phillips, Director of Federal Programs

Prior to joining Rylex in March 2015, Tracy worked for Engineering Services Network, Inc., as the deputy director for Air Force operations and program manager of the Hill Air Force Base consolidated information technology contract in Layton, Utah.

Tracy is a senior-level leader who was the director of communications and information at Air Force Global Strike Command (AFGSC) headquarters at Barksdale AFB in Louisiana. She was responsible for providing communications and information leadership, strategic direction, policy, and resources to AFGSC.

In that position, Tracy formulated and provided broad policy guidance governing communications infrastructure and applications in support of AFGSC's mission and served as the primary advocate for the Air Force's nuclear command, control, and communication system capabilities.

Before that, she was the director of communications and information for U.S. Air Forces in Europe. She served as the CIO and senior Air Force IT leader in the European theater, overseeing communications operations plans and policy. Previously, she was the commander of the 86th Air and Space Communications Group, 86th Airlift Wing, USAF in Europe at Ramstein AFB, Germany.

Tracy was commissioned in 1983 from the U.S. Air Force Academy. In 1986, she became a communications-computer officer and was assigned to Headquarters Strategic Air Command, Offutt Air Force Base, as a computer programmer for missile warning systems.

Since then, Tracy has held various unit and staff positions in the United States, the Pentagon, and Europe. She commanded a combat communications squadron and an air and space communications group. She also served on the United States European Command staff and at Headquarters Air Force, first as the vice commander of the Air Force Pentagon Communications Agency and then as chief of the Information Assurance Integration Division under the deputy chief of staff for Warfighting Integration.

She has a bachelor of science degree from the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado, a master's degree in human relations from the University of Oklahoma, and a master's degree in strategic studies from the Air War College at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama. In addition, she attended Squadron Officer School, Air Command and Staff College, and Air War College at Maxwell AFB.

Tracy is a decorated veteran whose awards include the Legion of Merit Award (two devices), the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, and the Meritorious Service Medal (four devices).

General (Ret.) Lance L. Smith, Special Advisor

General Smith served as the commander, U.S. Joint Forces Command, and NATO supreme allied commander for transformation from November 2005 to November 2007. He retired from the Air Force in 2008 after 38 years in the U.S. military.

As commander, U.S. Joint Forces Command, General Smith was one of the nation's nine combatant commanders reporting directly to the secretary of defense and the president. He led more than 1.19 million service members, civil servants, contract employees, and consultants providing combat resources and training to America's war efforts around the world. As supreme allied commander, transformation, he worked to train NATO's military forces and transform their structures, capabilities, and doctrine to improve military effectiveness of the Alliance, most recently focused on the fight in Afghanistan. Prior to this job, General Smith was the deputy commander of U.S. Central Command, responsible for overseeing U.S. activities in the Middle East, Horn of Africa, and Southwest Asia, including Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan.

A native of Virginia and a graduate of Virginia Tech with a bachelor's degree in business management, General Smith received his commission as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force in 1970. He also earned a master's degree from Central Michigan University and attended the Air Command and Staff College, the Army War College, and the Advanced Executive Program at Northwestern University.

He has more than 13 years in command during war and peace, ranging from commanding two USAF fighter wings and two composite expeditionary wings in the Middle East to service as the 7th Air Force commander and air component commander for all allied air forces in South Korea. General Smith also was the commander/president of the USAF Air War College, the NATO School in Oberammergau, Germany, and the Air Force Doctrine Center.

As a command pilot, General Smith has more than 3,000 flight hours in a wide variety of fighter aircraft and flew more than 150 combat missions in Vietnam, Laos, Iraq, and Afghanistan. In Vietnam, he assisted in the pickup and recovery of over 15 downed airmen as an A-1 Skyraider "Sandy" pilot. He earned 3 Silver Stars, 3 Distinguished Flying Crosses, 10 Air Medals, and the Purple Heart in combat.

Other significant achievements include: Responsible for the first women to undergo pilot training in the U.S. Air Force, oversaw initial training and indoctrination for the first Eastern Bloc officers to work with NATO militaries after the fall of the Berlin Wall, pioneered the modern Air Expeditionary Force concept that resulted in the current structure of the U.S. Air Force.

General Smith currently serves on the executive committee of the Virginia Tech Alumni Association, the executive board of the North Carolina Military Foundation, and board of directors for Rylex Consulting.

Michael T. Braman, Senior Consultant

In his current capacity, Michael provides strategic acquisition and program management advice to the Intercontinental Ballistic Missile Program and the Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center. Prior to his current position, he served 31 years in the United States Air Force in numerous acquisition positions and retired as a colonel. Most recently, he was the director of strategic systems integration at Kirtland AFB, NM. Michael was responsible for standardizing the acquisition processes across the strategic systems portfolio that included current and future nuclear systems, subsystems, and components, most notably the intercontinental ballistic missile modernization and sustainment efforts and ongoing services efforts.

Michael has dedicated his entire professional career to federal acquisition and acquisition-related positions with extensive experience in aircraft procurement. After completing Air Force ROTC as a distinguished graduate from Baptist University, SC, he was assigned to Electronic Systems Center as a budget/cost analyst, in the first of four Product Center tours. He subsequently served as the development systems manager for the B-52, chief of business and integration for the C-17, deputy chief of the Weapons Division in SAF/AQP, deputy program director for the KC-767 tanker, chief of F-22 Multiyear Division, and commanded the 555th International Group with a Foreign Military Sales program portfolio valued at over $96 billion.

In addition to his acquisition assignments, Michael was responsible for cost analysis and test range improvements while assigned to the Air Force Operational Test Center. He also managed the largest branch at the Air Force Personnel Center, responsible for career development and assignments for over 10,000 officers in the comptroller, contracting, program management, engineering, and scientist career fields.

Michael is married to Patricia Phillips and they currently reside in Albuquerque, NM.

Gary W. Pond

Gary provides subject matter expertise and long-range planning services to the Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) System Program Office. His 31 years of leadership and managerial experience span a wide range of disciplines and expertise to include active military service, independent consulting, and nonprofit endeavors.

A native of Kentucky, Gary graduated from North Hardin High School in 1977 and earned a bachelor's degree in history (with honors) from the University of Louisville. He also holds three masters degrees: an MA in history from the University of Central Missouri; an M. Ed. from Wichita State University; and an MS from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, National Defense University. A distinguished graduate of Air Force ROTC, Gary served in the United States Air Force for 30 years, and retired in 2011 as a colonel.

While in the Air Force, Gary served in many positions in the ICBM, space, and aircraft enterprises. A career missileer, he gained significant experience in ICBM operations and maintenance within the Titan II, Minuteman II, Peacekeeper, and Minuteman III weapon systems. He also served in various space positions related to spacelift maintenance, as well as satellite and space control. He commanded two squadrons: the 90th Transportation Squadron and the 740th Missile Squadron. He also commanded two Air Force groups: the 21st Maintenance Group and the 982 Training Group, which was the largest aircraft maintenance technical training organization in the Air Force. Additionally, he served as a legislative liaison for the Secretary of the Air Force and wrote language for the National Defense Authorization Act, prepared Air Force leadership for hearing testimony, and escorted congressional members on delegation visits around the world. Gary served as vice commander of the 90th Missile Wing, in which he was responsible for the operations of a military installation, 150 nuclear ICBMs, and approximately 8,000 personnel. His final position in the Air Force was as vice commander of 20th Air Force—second in charge of the nation's ICBM force. He was responsible for the operations of three large ICBM wings, including 450 silos and missiles, nearly 20,000 personnel, an annual budget of $750 million, and assets valued in the tens of billions of dollars.

After retiring from the Air Force, he was an independent consultant providing contract proposal writing expertise to the defense industry. He has always been an active member of the communities where he lived. Most notably, he served on the general committee of Cheyenne Frontier Days, Inc., which is the largest outdoor rodeo in the world. As part of the all-volunteer leadership team for this nonprofit, 10-day mega-event, he organized over 3,000 volunteers and led the planning, public relations, contracting, and marketing of the "Daddy of the All." In fact, his committee won the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association Large Outdoor Rodeo of the Year Award—the top award in the business—all three years that he served as a chairman.

Gary is married to the former Patricia Hasty, of Clearwater, Kansas, and has two children, Ryan and Ethan.

Doug CaseDouglas Case, Marketing Director

Douglas' background includes 20 years in sales and marketing with 10 years in government and corporate IT sales with MicronPC. His roles with MicronPC included sales manager, Air Force account executive, and federal channel account executive. His tenure in the government IT marketplace was marked with success as part of the MicronPC Government team developing and executing strategic sales and marketing plans, including his contribution to MicronPC's award and performance on the Air Force $1 billion Desktop 5, and IT-BPA contracts.

In 2006 he founded Risingline, a marketing and web development company, which he currently manages. Risingline provides consulting, marketing, design, project management services, and IT support to corporate and midsize clients throughout the U.S.

Douglas received his Bachelor of Science degree in business administration, graduating magna cum laude with presidential honors, from Lewis–Clark State College. He resides in Boise and enjoys spending time with his wife and three children in the beautiful outdoors of Idaho. He's actively involved as a coach and committee member with the Meridian Police Activities League, which provides organized sports activities for youth with the goals of developing teamwork, leadership, and sportsmanship.

Adam Moore

Adam Moore, Technical Advisor

Adam has been building and working on computer systems for more than 25 years. As a child he started building computers out of the spare parts so he could play video games on them. This provided opportunities to learn and gain various technical skills as technology and the computer industry advanced to what it is now. He is CompTIA Security + Certified as well as Security + CE. For the last 6 years he has worked as a contractor at Hill AFB providing IT support as a CSA, FSA, and currently as the IT Service Desk Manager. Adam has also worked as a Key Accounts Manager for UPS Freight and as the Operations Manager for Arizona Elite Security. He was a volunteer for the Red Cross in Phoenix, Arizona as a Ham Radio Operator where he provided logistical support and communications for their disaster recovery team. Adam lives in Ogden, Utah with his wife and three children. In his spare time he works as an Artist and illustrated the children's book series "The Littlest Fairy."




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