Alana Alsop Joins McKissack & McKissack as DMV Director of Business Development

Alana Alsop Joins McKissack & McKissack as DMV Director of Business Development

"We're already active in many infrastructure projects in the DMV, but we plan to significantly expand our work in the area. The barriers to entry in this sector are high though, especially for minority- and woman-owned businesses. But breaking into this kind of work is complex and weighted towards large majority firms," said Deryl McKissack, president and CEO of McKissack. "When I met Alana through her business development efforts for other firms, it was clear to me that she would be a perfect fit at McKissack and give us an edge. She has excellent contacts and the perfect skillset for our needs."

Alsop will solidify McKissack's current business relationships and build new ones

"I aim to solidify current relationships, grow new relationships and be an active player in promoting diversity, equity and inclusion with respect to procurement. We want to make sure women and minorities have an equal playing field when it comes to these projects," Alsop said.

She pointed out that McKissack has been a thought leader in the AEC industry, pushing for equity for minority- and woman-owned businesses. "Deryl has fought every day for her success and now she is working to level the playing field and make it more equitable for diverse mid-sized businesses. We are working to get bigger pieces of projects and to lead teams as the prime contractor, in partnership with other like-minded top-notch companies."

Entrepreneur has worked in "every aspect of business development" in the AEC industry

Before joining McKissack, Alsop was director of marketing and business development for David M. Schwarz Architects in Washington, D.C. Much of her career, however, has been as an entrepreneur. Since 2013, she has owned BoothBid, a consultancy that connects new and emerging businesses with exhibit booths and sponsorships at national trade conferences and similar events. Although the convention and conference business slowed during the Covid-19 pandemic, Alsop said the "experience shaped who I am today and I will always be an entrepreneur at heart after running my own business for almost a decade."

Business development work has a lot in common with entrepreneurship, according to Alsop. "You run your own piece of the company, you set goals, and you go for it—but with a firm like McKissack, you have a lot more support and a broader array of services to market," she said.

"I have been in every aspect of the business development field, from proposals and sponsorships to sales and marketing. It has given me such a broad array of skills and such significant depth of knowledge that I have the ability to jump, make new contacts and turn them into authentic and productive connections," Alsop said.

Before she founded her own company, Alsop worked in the AEC industry as director of sponsorship for Associated Builders and Contractors, the trade group, and as a proposal manager in the construction and engineering section of Pepco Energy Services.

Alsop noted she was drawn to work for McKissack because "I met Deryl McKissack at various industry events and admired her business success, her fighting spirit and her leadership in mentoring others, and especially women, in the industry. She is forging a meaningful and unique path in the AEC industry, and I hope to follow in her footsteps," Alsop said.

Alsop lives in Prince George's County, Maryland, with her husband, who is an urban farmer, two daughters and a dog.