Virginia, known as the hub of the nation’s defense and home to the Pentagon, has seized the top spot in defense spending across the United States, according to new data from the Department of Defense Office of Local Defense Community Cooperation. During the 2022 fiscal year, the DoD allocated a staggering $62.7 billion in Virginia, outpacing states like Texas, California, and Florida. This revelation underscores Virginia’s pivotal role in national security, given its strategic military installations. However, as the specter of a government shutdown looms, questions arise about how states heavily reliant on defense spending might navigate prolonged disruptions. These numbers also shed light on the intricate dance between government funding and the nation’s military infrastructure. The report provides a comprehensive overview of defense spending, covering everything from contracted goods and services to grants awarded by the DoD, offering public and private leaders insights into optimizing defense investments.

Following Virginia, Texas, California, and Florida in defense spending, the next states in the top 10 are New York, Maryland, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and Arizona. Each of these states plays a vital role in supporting various aspects of the nation’s defense, contributing to the robust defense ecosystem that spans across the country. However, Virginia, with its proximity to the Pentagon and numerous defense-related installations, leads the pack as a major beneficiary of defense spending. The rankings highlight the significance of these states in ensuring the readiness and capabilities of the U.S. armed forces.

Contract Opportunities to Watch: Sarcos Defense

Sarcos Defense, a subsidiary of Sarcos Technology and Robotics Corporation, has secured a $13.8 million contract from Warner Robins Air Logistics Complex at Robins Air Force Base, GA. The contract, part of AFWERX AFVentures’ STRATFI program, will fund the development and integration of Sarcos’ AI and machine learning software framework, the AI Computational Service, into its Guardian line of robotic systems. The AI Computational Service aims to enable robots to learn from experiences using a success-based learning approach, enhancing their ability to understand their environment, exhibit sound judgment in unforeseen situations, and quickly acquire new skills. This contract will span four years and involve Military Utility Assessments at various Air Force locations, furthering the synergy between human workers and AI technology in enhancing productivity and safety.

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Cleared Opportunities

Booz Allen Hamilton’s corporate venture capital arm, Booz Allen Ventures, has invested in HiddenLayer, a security platform designed to protect machine learning (ML) models. This strategic investment will bolster Booz Allen’s Adversarial AI capabilities, enhancing its capacity to provide secure AI solutions in response to evolving national security threats and growing consumer demands. HiddenLayer’s platform, combined with Booz Allen’s MLSec platform and AI solutions, will empower government agencies to confidently adopt AI technologies while guarding against adversarial attacks and ensuring robust cybersecurity. Booz Allen Ventures’ commitment to investing in AI technologies supports the company’s broader missions focused on Generative AI and Responsible AI.

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Jillian Hamilton has worked in a variety of Program Management roles for multiple Federal Government contractors. She has helped manage projects in training and IT. She received her Bachelors degree in Business with an emphasis in Marketing from Penn State University and her MBA from the University of Phoenix.