Mentor/Protégé Program

The Department of Defense Pilot Mentor-Protégé Program was established under Section 831 of Public Law 101-510, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1991 (10 U.S.C. 2302 note). The purpose is to provide incentives for DoD contractors to assist small businesses as defined in the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulations (DFARS) 219.7102 (b) in enhancing their capabilities and increasing the participation of such firms in government and commercial contracts.

Effective October 1, 2003, Mentor-Protégé Program was transitioned from the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD), Small & Disadvantaged Business Utilization (SADBU) level to the military services and other defense agencies delegating them full authority to approve and fund mentor-protégé agreements.

If you are not aware of this program I would highly recommend that you spend a little bit of time on Google searching for information on the Mentor/Protégé program within the US Government. Another helpful search is to actually go to an agency’s website and search for M/P program to see what that particular agency is doing with the program and if they even have a program up and running. DOD and NASA appear to be the leaders in the Mentor/Protégé space but there are others who are active. One interesting tool is a program through George Mason University in Virginia where they actually have a program to help small companies get into government contracting and connect them with mentors. Their website is URL

– A SBA Certified Small Disadvantaged Business (SDB) Concern
– A qualified organization employing the severely disabled
– Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB)
– Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business
– HUBZone Business

Again, I am not going to spend a lot of time blogging on this topic…this is something that each individual SDVOSB needs to figure out if the M/P program fits into their long term business strategy and if so they should pursue it.

Joel Stevens


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