Bret S. WackerBret Wacker Clark Hill
Bret S. Wacker
Bret S. Wacker is a member of Clark Hill PLC’s Government & Public Affairs Practice Group. Bret’s law practice focuses on counseling clients in all areas of federal government procurement and market development, including reviewing solicitations; drafting proposals; drafting contracts and subcontracts; assisting with contract negotiations; and performing government contract due diligence for mergers and acquisitions. Bret also works with clients in the assessment, development and implementation of federal procurement compliance programs, as well as counseling contractors during government audits and investigations and dispute resolution proceedings. He has represented clients before the U.S. General Accountability Office as well as the Boards of Contract Appeals and the Courts of the Federal Circuit.
In addition to his federal contracting practice, Bret works with both for-profit and not-for-profit entities seeking to secure federal research and development or other funding support through federal government agencies, including the U.S. Department of Defense and its sub-agencies. Bret's government affairs practice enables him to introduce and seek the support of executive and legislative branch officials who can assist with the funding and acquisition process relevant to client programs and initiatives.
Prior to joining Clark Hill, Bret served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Adecco Government Solutions, the U.S. federal market subsidiary of the world’s largest staffing and human resources organization. Recruited with the charge of restructuring and rebuilding this business unit after the loss of its longtime single major federal contract, Bret led a team that defined and executed a federal market capture strategy, including instituting compliant internal business processes, as well as crafting sales and marketing efforts which resulted in several new, multi-year federal contracts.
Previously, Bret was Senior Counsel and Assistant Secretary of Compuware Corporation, one of the world’s largest independent software vendors and IT professional services providers. Bret provided counsel to the company’s board of directors and senior executives on a wide range of transactional and corporate matters. During his ten years with Compuware, Bret negotiated and closed over 65 acquisition transactions in the U.S. and Europe.
Prior to joining the private sector, Bret served in the administrations of President Ronald Reagan and President George H. W. Bush, including an appointment as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Consular Affairs in which he oversaw the operations of the U.S. Passport Agency. In addition, Bret has provided policy and political counsel to the leadership of 3 national political campaigns. He is a member of the Bar of the States of Michigan and Maryland, and is also admitted to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan and U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado. He is a member of the Board of Contract Appeals Bar Association, and the American Bar Association Section of Public Contract Law, as well as the National Defense Industry Association.
Our client, Daniels Building Company, was the successful awardee of a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs construction contract to renovate existing kitchen and food storage areas at the Battle Creek VA Medical Center in Battle Creek, MI. The procurement was set aside for award only to service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses (“SDVOSB”) approved through the VA’s Center for Verification and Evaluation (“CVE”). After announcement of the award, a disappointed unsuccessful offeror filed a SDVOSB status protest challenging whether Daniels Building was actually a SDOVSB and thus ineligible for the contract award. Daniels Building engaged Clark Hill to defend this protest, which if sustained could have potentially destroyed our client’s business due to its dependency on federal SDVOSB set-aside contracts.
The protestor alleged that, through two separate joint ventures with two different companies with no connection to the VA’s procurement award, that Daniels was (1) controlled by a large company and thus no longer small; and/or (2) was controlled by non-veterans in conflict with the VA’s regulations. The protestor also alleged that Daniels Building fraudulently obtained its SDVOSB certification by intentionally filing false information with, and withholding key information from, the VA. The Clark Hill team of Bret Wacker, Stuart Schwartz and Nicole Tersigni prepared, in the mandated 5 day response period, a detailed brief demonstrating Daniels Building is in fact owned and controlled by a service disabled veteran; and that the protestor’s attempts to defame and discredit Daniels Building Company were without basis in fact or law. The VA agreed with Daniels Building that its joint venture relationships had no bearing on the ownership or control of our client, and that the protestor’s evidence was not compelling enough to overturn Daniels Building Company’s SDVOSB certification. Our client is now able to move forward with contract performance at the Battle Creek VA Medical Center.
Resolved a significant dispute in favor of a client with the Defense Contract Audit Agency regarding the allowability of deferred compensation costs
Crafted a “go to market” government business development strategy for a top 10 global independent software developer
Developed a government contract compliance plan for a multi-billion dollar global home products company
Negotiated the terms of the largest Stimulus Act construction subcontract at Savannah River Nuclear Site
Obtained approval of the EPA in the novation of a $90 million Great Lakes dredging contract on behalf of local marine construction company
Obtained a reversal of a U.S. Army decision excluding a client from a multi-billion dollar cloud computing contract procurement
On behalf of a leading IT hardware and software reseller, successfully prosecuted a bid protest before the Government Accountability Office resulting in a $7 billion Air Force ID/IQ contract award in favor of the client
Represented a large security firm in successfully protesting the award of a security contract at the Harry S Truman Library and Museum
Represented a manufacturer of advanced wiring systems on combat helicopters in bid protest of an adverse award of a $15 million Navy contract
Represented the largest non-profit in Las Vegas in overturning an adverse $20 million Ability One contract award of services at Nellis Air Force Base
Successfully defended a “software-as-a-service” provider in a protest of a NAFI contract award