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Thomas Flake

General Info

About

Thomas Flake founded Bcause in 2012 and has served as the firm’s Chief Marketing Officer and Board Member since January 2014. After leaving an 8.5-year career in the Navy, in 1994, Tom started a business, Synergy Consultants, which provided computer education seminars, software development and outsourced desktop support to the Internet Service Provider (ISP) community. In 1998, Synergy Consultants was merged with another company, iTribe, and with outside investors contributing $1 million, Picus, LLC, a competitive local exchange carrier, was formed. During the next two years, Picus invented flat-rate long distance, bundled local, long distance and Internet Access, and SS7 enabled toll-grade voice over internet protocol. Also during this period, Picus raised over $17 million in direct investment from accredited investors and another $50 million in loans from vendors (Nokia, Nortel, Coppercom and GE Capital), merged with or acquired seven other companies and grew its customer base to over 35,000 customers in the Mid-Atlantic region. As founder, Board member, Vice President of Business Development and later Chief Operating Officer, Tom was integral to all of these activities. In 2000, Picus’ ability to raise additional capital was impeded by the market crash and the company declared bankruptcy. Later in 2001, Tom founded TeliOn, the first-of-its-kind municipal area wireless network for Internet access. The company was sold in 2002 to Pinnacle Online. Also in 2002, he joined Jacobs Engineering, a Fortune 500 firm, as a Project Manager. In 2004, Jacobs Engineering won the largest contract ever awarded by NASA’s Langley Research Center – the ROME contract – and Tom was promoted to Manager, Information Technology Projects. In 2005, his responsibilities were expanded to include all aspects of managing the team responsible for information technology infrastructure, including desktop support, server management, data acquisition systems at the five largest wind tunnels and information technology security. During his tenure, customer feedback scores began in the 80’s but quickly rose to over 99% and remained there for over four years. In 2005, he was certified a Project Management Professional (PMP). In 2009, Tom accepted re-assignment and became responsible for all aspects of Jacobs-ROME organizational development, marketing and Minority Serving Institution outreach. During his tenure, ROME’s customer scores increased from the low 90’s but quickly increased to over 96%. In 2011, Tom was informed that his position was being eliminated due to NASA budget cuts, and he decided to return to entrepreneurship. In October 2011, he and a partner (John Ashby) purchased VBB Communications, rebranded it as Utility Scale Computing and re-launched the company, US Computing LLC, which provides outsourced solutions for maintenance and monitoring of computer infrastructure (including server co-location, network connectivity, power, HVAC, systems administrator services and rack space). Tom owns 50% of US Computing. In 2012, Tom joined with the National Institute of Aerospace and proposed the creation and funding of a small business incubator (Peninsula Technology Incubator or PTI) on the peninsula to leverage the enormous potential represented by the proximity of Langley Research Center, National Institute of Aerospace, Jefferson Labs, Hampton University, Christopher Newport University and The College of William and Mary. Tom received a Bachelor of Science degree from Old Dominion University School of Business and Public Administration with a major in Decision Science (Quantitative Methods) and minors in Business Administration and Information Systems. He graduated from The College of William and Mary’s Executive MBA program and is certified by NASA as a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt.
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