Meet Our Team
Our KYPTAC Staff is built on experienced professionals, with diverse backgrounds and strong ties to government agencies and contracting companies.
Nancy Brown, PMP
Nancy Brown is the Executive Director of the Kentucky Procurement Technical Assistance Center (KYPTAC), which is the primary provider for government contracting assistance in Kentucky. Brown has 13 years of domestic and international experience working in for-profit and non-profit corporations.
Nancy started her career working for Queen Rania of Jordan. After moving to the United States from Jordan, Nancy has served a wide range of clients and companies, such as Valvoline Headquarters as the Senior Marketing Project Manager and UK HealthCare helping the hospital market its initiatives and services.
Before joining the KYPTAC in 2016, Nancy served as a Program Manager for the Going Places Network, an opportunity-development and self-sufficiency initiative funded by the Walmart Foundation, in collaboration with Dress for Success. Nancy has a passion for serving small businesses and making a difference in her favorite state - Kentucky!
Nancy received her Bachelor of Arts in communications from the University of Kentucky and is certified as a Project Management Professional (PMP). Brown currently resides in Lexington, KY with her family.
Shawn brings over 17 years of experience in economic and small business development to her role.
Prior to joining the KYPTAC team, Shawn’s previous experience includes serving as the Director of Operations for the Council on Licensure, Enforcement & Regulation. She was also the Center Director and Management Consultant for the Bluegrass SBDC, where she assisted existing and new business with capital formation and business planning.
Shawn earned Bachelor's degrees in Management and Accounting from the University of Kentucky.
Jon Olsen, MBA
Senior Procurement Consultant
Prior to joining KSTC, Jon was the Procurement Operations Manager for the Corporate Services Office of the Western Area Power Administration. Jon has a total of 30 years experience in Federal contracting and financial assistance award placement and administration. Within the Department of Energy, he held positions as a Contract Specialist, Grants and Agreements Specialist, and Contracting Officer for the Western Area Power Administration and Golden Field Office. He also was a civilian Contracting Intern with the US Army, and a Contract Negotiator with the US Air Force.
Jon earned a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Alaska – Anchorage, and an MBA from the University of Colorado – Denver.
Senior Procurement Consultant
Melinda comes to KYPTAC with 10+ years’ experience assisting in the writing and management of over $10M in government grants (including Small Business Innovation Research grants), contracts and proposals. Most recently, she was the Principal Investigator of an SBIR project with the Department of Energy. Prior to this, she conducted scientific research characterizing nano materials and developing new techniques in the growth of two-dimensional materials. She formerly held the position of Director of the Western Kentucky University Cyber Defense Laboratory and taught an acoustics course for the Department of Physics and Astronomy. As part of her cybersecurity work, she received Certified Ethical Hacker and Computer Network Defense Architect certifications
She received both Bachelor's and Master's of Science degrees in Physics from Western Kentucky University.
Griffin Melzer joined the KYPTAC team in October of 2019 as an Aerospace Focused Counselor. Prior to joining the KYPTAC, Griff worked with the Kentucky Aerospace Industry Consortium (KAIC), promoting it’s mission by enhancing the marketing presence and expanding networking efforts to assist in the continued growth of aerospace in Kentucky. For over a year and a half, Griff and the KAIC team traveled all over the globe to build strategic partnerships on behalf of the Kentucky aerospace and defense sector. He looks forward to continuing his support of the industry through his role here with the KYPTAC.
Griff graduated from Salisbury University in Maryland in 2017 with a B.S. in Business Administration.
Frank Bennett brings decades of experience in business leadership and strategy to his position at KYPTAC. Before joining the KYPTAC team, Frank was the CEO of The National Quilt Museum in Paducah, Kentucky, for ten years. Frank has also served in leadership roles with several other firms, including Sage Fundraising Solutions and SmartStream IT Solutions. Frank has written on leadership and strategy topics for several years. His book, The Breathing Organization: Essentials of Effective Leadership," was published in 2007.
Frank received his BS in Communication from Middle Tennessee State University. He also holds a Certificate in Disruptive Strategy and a Certificate in Sustainable Business Strategy from Harvard Business School Online and a Certificate in Fundraising Management from Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis
Jim’s primary experience comes from 15+ years in the banking and insurance fields. Prior to teaming with KYPTAC, Jim was a Management Consultant with the South Central (KY) SBDC, assisting new and experienced entrepreneurs with their small businesses.
Jim received his B.S in Agribusiness Management from Eastern Kentucky University.