LaKeshia Grant Shephard
Chief Executive Officer
Ms. LaKeshia Grant Shephard holds a Bachelor of Science in Finance and a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from Morgan State University. She is also a Certified Enterprise Architect (CEA) from Carnegie Mellon University, IBM and the Open Group. She is a graduate of the Smith College/Society for Women Engineers Excellence Program for Women in Science, Technology and Engineering, Veteran Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship (V-WISE) and alumni of the Goldman Sachs/Babson College 10,000 Small Business program. She is a certified Lean Six Sigma Professional (LSSP), Change Management Specialist (CMS), AWS Business Professional and is also certified in Information Technology (IT) Infrastructure Library (ITIL).
Ms. Shephard was the 2014 Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Small Business Person of the Year for DC. She is also a 2014 SmartCEO Brava! winner. She was also recognized as the 2013 Corporate Heroine in Technology of the Year by the March of Dimes and AFCEA NOVA. She was also nominated for the 2013 Women in Technology (WIT) Entrepreneur award. She was recognized as the 2012 Women in Business Champion of the Year by the DC Chamber of Commerce and received three honors by Morgan State University. First, she received the Morgan State University President's Appreciation Award for Distinguished Alumni. She was also awarded the Morgan MBA Alumni of the Year award and Morgan named an award in her honor for future MBA students.
Ms. Shephard is one of select founders in the Kauffman Foundation and Khan Academy Entrepreneurship Series alongside Richard Branson, chairman of the Virgin Group; Lara Morgan, founder of Pacific Direct; Marc Ecko, founder of Ecko Unlimited; T.A. McCann, founder and CEO of Gist; and Zach Kaplan, CEO of Inventables. Once recognized as a rising star by the National Women of Color in Technology and featured on MSNBC, business journals, Black Enterprise and national newspapers, she has been instrumental in the concept of “collaboration as opposed to competition.” She has brought many cross-functional organizations together to become major forces in large government and commercial contracts for over 22 years. Her experience includes leadership at American Management Systems, Booz Allen Hamilton and Hewlett Packard.
Ms. Shephard is also an adjunct professor teaching Business Planning and Business Practicum at Bowie State University.
To learn more about her and how she started VEA, check out the following videos: