The Greater Washington Partnership recently announced the addition of two distinguished Board partners: Dave Calhoun, chief executive officer at The Boeing Company, and Tim Sands, president at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech). They bring cross-sector expertise to strengthen a competitive tech workforce in the region.
Calhoun and Sands joined the Greater Washington Partnership amid the organization’s sharpened focus on skills and talent initiatives, which aim to bridge the gap between the business and academic communities from Baltimore to Richmond. Virginia Tech and Boeing developed a constructive shared commitment to innovation and collaboration as they expand their regional footprints.
Last year, an estimated 70,000 jobs were unfilled in the region, and almost half of these vacancies were technology jobs. And a key resource the Greater Washington Partnership uses to address these gaps is the Employer Signaling System (ESS), a differentiating tool informed by employers and labor market data that helps educators prepare students to fill some of the most in-demand tech jobs.
Virginia Tech is an existing partner with the ESS and has a history of working with industry leaders to build a curriculum that aligns with evolving labor market needs.
Calhoun and Sands’ term is effective immediately and runs through 2026.
Along with welcoming new board partners who are long-standing champions for filling employment gaps, the Greater Washington Partnership hired Emily Bouck West as a new vice president for skills, talent, and the future of work to advance these projects. And Bouck West recently served as public policy manager at Amazon, focused on workforce development matters.
“The ongoing partnership between Boeing and Virginia Tech is a leading example of how employer-educator collaboration can unlock talent, drive innovation, and catalyze economic transformation for a region. As the Greater Washington Partnership continues to double down on its skills and talent work, I couldn’t think of two better leaders than Dave and Tim to help shape our work and provide insight on the innovative methods they have discovered to strengthen ties between industry and academia.”
— Peter Scher, vice chairman at JPMorgan Chase & Co. and board chair of the Greater Washington Partnership
“The Partnership’s efforts to bring together employers, community leaders and academics to identify shared opportunities and act on key issues is important to our region, and our nation. Together, we will leverage insights from GWP programs, including the Employer Signaling System, to fill vital tech jobs and generate greater economic opportunity. We are thrilled to have leaders like Dr. Tim Sands and Dave Calhoun join our board as we strengthen and expand these vital initiatives.”
— Kathy Warden, chair, chief executive officer and president at Northrop Grumman and vice board chair at the Greater Washington Partnership
“Virginia Tech has been an important partner to Boeing over the years, and I’m excited to bring the shared knowledge from that relationship to the Greater Washington Partnership. By bringing together business and academia into the alliance, we will continue to foster a robust talent pipeline in our region — helping us invest in the future of our workforce and ensuring sustained growth and innovation. I’m looking forward to contributing as a board member as we work collectively to drive impactful change in our community.”
— Dave Calhoun, Boeing president and CEO and new Partnership board partner
“Virginia Tech has been a proud member of the greater Washington D.C. community for more than 50 years, with nearly 80,000 alumni and a growing number of industry partners in the region. We look forward to working collaboratively with the Greater Washington Partnership to make education and employment more accessible, develop and attract diverse talent, and support the region’s growth as one of the nation’s most innovative technology hubs.”
— Tim Sands, Virginia Tech president and new Partnership Board partner
“Emily’s experience and passion advancing our tech-ready talent pipelines will fuel the Partnership’s work. When students are equipped with the knowledge, skills and abilities they need to be successful in tech roles, it benefits not only the students but also the employers in our region, and more broadly, our region’s economy. With the addition of Tim and Dave on our board, together, we are moving swiftly to meet our evolving needs. Both of their institutions have been intentional about their growth and presence in the region.”
— Kathy Hollinger, Greater Washington Partnership chief executive officer