About Us

The Cross Timbers APEX Accelerator helps companies find contracts for work with local, state and federal governments.



Hours of counseling accomplished, 2021



Value of the 1,400 awarded contracts, 2021


New Clients

Number of new clients welcomed, 2021

Our mission is to increase the number of contracts awarded to companies in our county service area, resulting in increased revenue and jobs in those areas. Based at the University of Texas at Arlington, we provide one-on-one counseling, events, and up-to-date research in everything that has to do with selling to government agencies.

Cross Timbers APEX Accelerator is expected to seek out and assist Small Business, Small Disadvantaged Business (SDB),Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB), Historically Underutilized Business Zone Small Business Concerns (HUBZone), Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB), and Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority Institutions (HBCU/MIs).

Similar to our Small Business Development Center (SBDC) partners, Cross Timbers maintains detailed counseling records on all client activities. Cross Timbers also functions within the terms and conditions of its contract with the Department of Defense and that of the University of Texas at Arlington.

Cross Timbers APEX Accelerator operates under the ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management Systems.


Cross Timbers serves as a North Texas APEX Accelerator. This APEX Accelerator is funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the Department of Defense. The purpose of the APEX Accelerator program is to help the Department of Defense satisfy its needs for goods and services by increasing competition in the private sector.

The cooperative agreement with DOD is matched with funds from the University of Texas at Arlington and Third Party Contributors.

The content of any written materials, or verbal communications of the APEX Accelerator, does not necessarily reflect the official view of, or imply endorsement by, DOD or DLA, UTA, or Third Party Contributors.

Meet Our Staff

Gregory James


Gregory James

Federal Marketing, Mentor/Protégé Agreements, Market Research : Gregory James has extensive experience in federal contracting and contract financing. Mr. James currently serves as the Director of the Cross Timbers APEX Accelerator, located at the University of Texas at Arlington. Prior to Cross Timbers, Mr. James was the Project Director of the Dallas/Fort Worth MBDA Business Center, in Dallas, TX, and the Minority Business Enterprise Center (MBEC), which is funded by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Minority Business Development Agency. Mr. James was an investor and former President/Chief Operations Officer of PAZ Energy LLC. The group of eleven minority investors negotiated a $125 Million loan from Silver Point Finance to acquire 11.03% in 114 natural gas wells, at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, operated by Chesapeake Energy. Mr. James graduated from the Southern Methodist University (SMU) Cox School of Business and has served on the SMU Alumni Board of Directors. Mr. James has published an eBook entitled “The James Guide to Developing a Federal Marketing Plan” which is available on Amazon.com.

Phonthip Garringer

Business Counselor

Phonthip Garringer

Market Analysis Procurement Counseling: Phonthip Garringer is a Business Counselor at Cross Timbers APEX Accelerator. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Management with a Minor in Finance. Prior to CTAA, she worked in management, financial, and hospitality industries for over 10 years.

Mindi Ramirez

Administrative Assistant

Mindi Rameriz

Shelia Birdow

Business Development Coordinator

Shelia Birdow

Outreach Events DoD Information Security Requirements : Shelia Birdow earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Merchandising from Texas Christian University and certifications in Project Management, ITIL and Lean Six Sigma. She brings with her more than 15 years of experience in Information Technology network and desktop support. As a former business owner she also brings her experience and skills in business management and client relations.

James Rollins

Business Counselor

James Rollins

Procurement Counseling and Bid Matching: James R. (Jim Bob) Rollins grew up in Longview, Texas. Entered the U.S. Army in 1972 and retired in 1997 after serving as an Armor Officer and Civil Affairs Officer in the U.S, Europe, Southwest Asia, and Australia. Upon retiring from the military, he moved to Lufkin, Texas, where his wife was raised and began a career with the Procurement Technical Assistance Program. He has worked as a Part-Time Procurement Counselor, Senior Procurement Counselor, and Director at the Angelina College Procurement Assistance Center. Then began working as a Procurement Counselor for the University of Texas at Arlington Cross Timbers Procurement Technical Assistance Center. James attended Australian Joint Service Staff College, Angelina College, and the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.

Vineetha Uddaraju

Research Assistant


Market Analysis : Vineetha Uddaraju is a Graduate Research Assistant at Cross Timbers APEX Accelerator. She is currently pursuing a Master's Degree in Business Analytics at the University of Texas at Arlington. She has three years of work experience in Supply Chain, Logistics and Airline Management.

Third Party Contributors

The Third Party Contributors for this contract year include Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, Bell Helicopter Textron Inc., L3Harris Technologies and Southwest Airlines.

View a complete list