Mr. Chapman began his career working for legendary Texas political leader Bob Bullock. He spent eight years in the Texas Controller’s office, before moving to California in 1986 to enter the computer industry. It was at this time that he first became aware of major problems in federal small business contracting programs, and soon became an advocate for small technology firms. In this role, he closely monitored federal “set-aside” contracts for small businesses. His work triggered a 1991 Congressional investigation into the F-22 Stealth fighter that forced the Air Force and Lockheed Martin to allocate an additional $501 million to small and minority-owned firms.
In his continuing role as a small business advocate, Mr. Chapman spearheaded litigation to acquire information on small business utilization in government contracting. In 1993, a ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit led to the release of vital information documenting small business contracting awards. This has paved the way for greater participation by small businesses in federal contracting.
In 2003, information provided by Mr. Chapman prompted a GAO investigation confirming that, in direct conflict with the Small Business Act of 1953, a significant number of small business contracts were being awarded to some of the world’s largest corporations.
In order to form a coalition to promote fair policy in federal small business contracting, Mr. Chapman founded a trade group, the Micro Computer Industry Suppliers Association, in 2003. When membership began to include businesses in other industries, the name of the organization was changed to the American Small Business League in 2004.
A vocal crusader for the rights of small business, Mr. Chapman is a familiar figure at the Small Business Administration and in the United States Congress, where he has continued to work tirelessly during the last two presidential administrations to prevent federal small business contracts from being diverted to large corporations.