CDCA announces new president, key leadership changes following annual election

Executive Board headshots

Executive Board headshots

CHARLESTON, S.C. — The Charleston Defense Contractors Association (CDCA) announced Monday that their organization has officially implemented new leadership within its board of directors to include new board members following their 21st annual election. This included the appointment of a new president, vice president, treasurer, and secretary for the CDCA.

According to the CDCA, the elected board of directors will serve for three years and remain in their current roles from 2022 until the next annual election in 2023.

“Having been a member of the CDCA board of directors for over three years, and holding various positions along the way, I’m more excited now than ever about where this organization is headed,” said Gary Jaffe, the newly elected president of CDCA. “Being entrusted to lead the CDCA is an incredible honor and I look forward to seeing what opportunities await.”

Jaffe, a resident of Charleston for nearly 20 years, works as the director of strategy and growth for Atlas Technologies, Inc., a veteran-owned small business IT solutions firm specializing in secure communications and networking for military clients. Jaffe attended The Citadel, also known as the Military College of South Carolina, where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration and later an MBA from The Citadel’s Graduate College.

Additionally, Jaffe served in the U.S. Air Force and was deployed during Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. He currently serves as a senior executive for Atlas Technologies, Inc. providing Jaffe with insight and experience that will prove valuable as CDCA’s new president.

Mike Teeple, the newly-elected vice president of CDCA, has been supporting the local Charleston defense Industry for 15 years as a senior leader at Booz Allen Hamilton. Teeple attended The Citadel, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree, and later a Masters degree from The Citadel’s Graduate College. Additionally, Teeple served in the U.S. Navy as a Surface Warfare Officer (SWO) onboard the USS VISCKSBURG (CG 69) and the USS CHUNG-HOON (DDG 93). Teeple also served in the USNR supporting the Maritime Expeditionary Group. According to Teeple, his vast experience in the defense industry allows him to offer unique insight and recommendations to the board.

Manuel Lovgren, affectionately referred to as “Manny,” was re-elected as the treasurer of the CDCA. Lovgren has been a resident of South Carolina since 2013 and has 33 years of experience in Operational Business Development Leadership and Management for DoD services. He also serves as the vice president of strategic initiatives for Orbis, where he provides business strategies and helps with organizational funds. Lovgren was a part of the Sonar Technician community while serving in the U.S. Navy for six years. Known for his ability to grow finances for businesses, Lovgren is looking forward to continuing to apply those skills as the treasurer of CDCA.

Claire Allen, a former adjunct instructor at Trident Technical College, has been involved in various Charleston organizations since 1998. Following her tenure as an educator, Allen went on to receive her Project Management Professional certification from the Project Management Institution to further build her expertise in the government contracting industry. Along with her certification, she has received a BBA in Marketing and an MBA in Entrepreneurship. Claire was elected to CDCA’s Executive Board to serve as the Secretary and Chair of the Operations Committee.

Also noteworthy, serving his first term on CDCA’s board of directors is Ron Ravelo, a former Navy pilot with 30 years of military service. After retiring from the Navy in 2017, Ravelo joined the Charleston defense industry as a Senior Program Manager — then Director — of SRC, a nationally-recognized defense research and development company. In September, Ravelo joined SAIC in their NIWC Atlantic account as a senior director, where he is responsible for the account’s C4ISR programs and charged with execution and growth.

Ravelo will serve as the new chair of CDCA’s Education Committee.

According to CDCA, the new members of the board have a distinguished and longstanding record of strong leadership that is sure to help with expanding the organization. If you are interested in learning more about the board of directors, visit

Those interested in becoming a member of CDCA or would like to learn more about the organization are encouraged to visit

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