Integrity, experience, leadership, hard work, and innovative ideas are the foundation
of our success at USIS. They also characterize the USIS management team. These seasoned
professionals bring a wealth of experience from serving with many of the largest
and most well-respected businesses in the world. Several also possess distinguished
military service records.
Sterling Phillips — President and CEO
Sterling Phillips is President and CEO of US Investigations Services, Inc. (USIS), the largest commercial provider of background investigations to the federal government. Mr. Phillips leads an organization of more than 6,000 employees in two divisions: Investigations Services Division (ISD), which performs federal, state, and local background investigations, fraud investigations and site visits, and Global Security and Solutions Division (GS&S), a global leader in the areas of security, intelligence support, litigation support, training and records management.
Mr. Phillips is a seasoned executive with a distinguished career leading companies serving government, security and technology clients. Prior to joining USIS in January 2013, Mr. Phillips served as CEO, President and Director of GTSI, an IT systems integration and services provider to federal, state and local governments. He led GTSI through a successful business turnaround and oversaw rapid growth culminating in the company’s sale in June 2012 to Unicom Systems.
From 2007 to 2010, Mr. Phillips was a venture partner with FirstMark Capital, and before that served for six years as Chairman and CEO of Analex Corporation, an intelligence, systems engineering, and security services provider to government clients that included the U.S. intelligence community, the Department of Defense and NASA. From 1996 to 2001, Mr. Phillips was senior vice president of Federal Data Corporation in the science and engineering and corporate marketing groups (now part of Northrop Grumman); during his tenure, the company’s revenues increased from $130 million to more than $650 million.
Earlier in his career, Mr. Phillips was chief operating officer from 1993 to 1996 for TRI-COR Industries, Inc., and also served as president of the federal business development division for Computer Sciences Corporation from 1992 to 1993. Previously, Mr. Phillips had a highly successful 24-year career with IBM, where he steadily advanced through technical, marketing and management roles of increasing responsibility. He spent the final nine years as an executive in the company’s federal systems division (now a part of Lockheed Martin) in business development and general management roles.
Mr. Phillips holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Johnny Tharp — President, Investigations Services Division
Johnny Tharp is President of USIS’ Investigations Services Division (ISD), the largest commercial supplier of background investigations to the U.S. government and a provider of diverse investigations, including site visits, to all levels of government and law enforcement agencies. Mr. Tharp leads a staff of more than 3,200 personnel across the U.S. and is the primary point of contact for USIS’ current five-year Background Investigations Fieldwork Services contract with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Federal Investigative Services. Most recently, Mr. Tharp had served as Chief Operating Officer of ISD.
Mr. Tharp has been with USIS since 2001, starting as a special investigator in El Paso, Texas. From July 2003 to March 2007, he was a District Manager in both Albany, New York and St. Louis, Mo., with responsibility for all aspects of investigations assigned to those geographic areas. From March 2007 to December 2010, he served as the Regional Vice President of the Eastern Business Unit, where he directed operations of five districts in 12 states. He was next promoted to Vice President of Support Operations, where he was responsible for quality, training, mobile technology and communications for the ISD business. In December 2012, Mr. Tharp assumed the role of Vice President of Field Operations for the ISD business with oversight of 10 regions and more than 2,500 employees serving on a number of different contracts in both commercial and government markets spanning the U.S. and its territories.
Mr. Tharp earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Texas at El Paso and a Master of Business Administration degree from Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, Pa.
Jeremy Wensinger — President, Global Security and Solutions
Jeremy Wensinger is President of USIS’ Global Security and Solutions (GS&S). GS&S is a global leader in the areas of security, intelligence support, litigation support, training and records management. With revenues in excess of $240 million and more than 2,000 employees, GS&S has the ability to provide broad and unique solutions and products to government and industry customers.
Before joining USIS, Mr. Wensinger spent the first 20 years of his career with Harris Corporation where he started in the finance organization. He progressed to Controller for Harris Information Systems before moving into operations. Over the course of his career at Harris, he held positions as President, Harris IT Services Corp., President, Harris Broadcast Communications Division and Group President, Harris Government Communications Systems. In the last position, he led a $2 billion group responsible for engineering services, operations, business development and strategic marketing for Harris’ government business.
In 2008, Mr. Wensinger joined Cobham Defense Systems as Chairman of the Board and President. In this role, he was responsible for a $1.5 billion group of businesses providing professional services and electronic systems to the U.S. Government, including the intelligence community. In 2011, Jeremy joined GTSI Corp. as Chief Operating Officer. GTSI was a NASDAQ listed provider of information technology solutions and services to federal, state and local government customers.
Mr. Wensinger holds a BS in business administration from Bowling Green State University and an MBA from the University of South Florida. He and his wife, Laurie, reside in Leesburg, VA.
Donald I. Buzinkai — Chief Financial Officer
Donald Buzinkai is the chief financial officer of US Investigations Services, Inc. (USIS). Mr. Buzinkai’s duties include leading an accounting, pricing and financial planning, reporting and analysis organization to provide strategic and financial guidance to all USIS businesses. Prior to USIS, he served as the CFO of Kroll Advisory Solutions, a subsidiary of Altegrity, where he was responsible for all financial functions and led an organization of more than 100 employees.
Mr. Buzinkai has more than 22 years of financial executive experience. Before joining Kroll Advisory, he served as vice president, controller and chief accounting officer for Kaydon Corporation, a leading designer and manufacturer of custom engineered and performance-critical products. From 1990 to 2007, he held a series of positions with increasing responsibility at Ingersoll-Rand, a global diversified industrial company.
Mr. Buzinkai, a Certified Public Accountant, earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from King’s College and a Master of Business Administration degree, with an emphasis in Operations Management, from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.
Susan M. Kirton — Vice President of Human Resources
Susan Kirton is vice president, Human Resources of US Investigations Services, Inc. (USIS), a position she has held since September 2008.
In this role, Ms. Kirton works closely with the presidents of USIS' two divisions, the Investigations Services Division (ISD) and the Global Security and Solutions (GS&S) Division and their HR teams in a combined team approach. She coordinates talent management, employee engagement and development and compliance strategies. Over the past 12 years, she has been promoted to increasingly more responsible positions at USIS. Beginning in June 2007, Ms. Kirton served as director of Human Resources for the Investigative Services Division. Before that, she filled the role of director for that division's Staffing and Employee Development, where she managed efficient and timely recruitment of new employees and developed defined career paths within the division. Ms. Kirton also led a team leader development program.
Prior to USIS, Ms. Kirton worked in HR leadership roles in the retail and hospitality industries.
Ms. Kirton earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from the University of Pittsburgh and a Master of Science degree in Human Resource Development from Villanova University.
Kevin M. Piltz — Chief Information Officer
Kevin Piltz is chief information officer for US Investigations Services, Inc. (USIS). Mr. Piltz directs all strategic technology planning and design, focusing on optimizing constituent areas, including software development, project and IT management, and business processes, in support of company goals. He is based in Falls Church, Va.
Prior to joining USIS in July 2012, Mr. Piltz was CIO of M*Modal (formerly MedQuist), where he was responsible for all internal and external IT services, systems and business relationships. During his time with M*Modal, he participated in a number of mergers and acquisitions that accounted for more than 40 percent of company growth. In addition, his efforts drove efficiencies that resulted in significant operational and financial savings for the company.
Previously, Mr. Piltz was CIO for Geller and Company, where he oversaw IT, development, project management and facilities. At the time, he managed one of the largest SQL-based SAP environment on the East Coast. Prior to that, Mr. Piltz was CIO for Amdocs (formerly ITDS). In that role, he was responsible for the short- and long-term strategic direction of all new development and technologies. Mr. Piltz was also involved in all technical and support aspects during the merger between Amdocs and ITDS. He had joined ITDS as senior vice president, Development, in 1997.
Earlier in his career, Mr. Piltz served in several senior-level technology-related positions, including director of new technologies for Subscriber Computing, Inc.; assistant vice president systems/program manager for Transamerica Insurance Group/TIG Insurance; and owner/consultant for Fault Tolerant Solutions, Inc.
Mr. Piltz earned a Bachelor of Science degree in General Business Administration, with a minor in Computer Science, at Ball State University.
Keith R. Simmons — Vice President, Deputy General Counsel
Keith R. Simmons is Vice President, Deputy General Counsel. He also serves as Assistant Corporate Secretary to the Boards of Directors for US Investigations Services, Inc. (USIS) and its subsidiaries. Mr. Simmons is responsible for providing legal counsel and services, regarding corporate governance, regulatory compliance, contractual and intellectual property matters as well as general corporate legal matters, primarily in support of the USIS Government Services Group.
In 2005, Mr. Simmons joined USIS as Associate General Counsel and Assistant Secretary to the Boards of Directors bringing nearly 30 years of legal experience to the company. Before joining USIS, Mr. Simmons held senior legal counsel positions including General Counsel for the technology company, SEI, Inc., in Harrisonburg, Va., and Senior Vice President and General Counsel at Grove Worldwide LLC, a manufacturer of capital equipment in Shady Grove, Pa.
Mr. Simmons has a broad legal and general business background with public and private companies. His expertise includes corporate law and governance, business litigation, mergers and acquisitions, employment law, and commercial and government contract law.
In 1972, Mr. Simmons earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering, Cum Laude, from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wis., and his Juris Doctorate from Marquette University Law School in 1977.
Mitch Lawrence – Vice President, Security
Mitch Lawrence is vice president, Security of US Investigations Services, Inc. (USIS). Mr. Lawrence is responsible for day-to-day security operations and security compliance for USIS. These activities include management of all aspects of the USIS personnel security program, facility clearances, investigator credentialing, and the USIS Personally Identifiable Information (PII) program and compliance with regulatory guidance issued by the Commonwealth of Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services.
Prior to coming to USIS, Mr. Lawrence gained more than 30 years experience in special security, working in the intelligence community and Department of Defense in various security areas such as program, personnel, information technology, facility, operations, training and management. His government career includes working for the NSA and CIA. After leaving government, Mr. Lawrence served as a business unit executive for a federal professional services firm before joining AT&T Government Solutions as Director of Security. Most recently, he served as Director of Security for KEYW Corporation, a publicly traded federal contractor for the intelligence community.
Mr. Lawrence is active in numerous professional security associations that help shape the industry. In addition, he was named one of the “Most Influential People in Security” by Security Magazine for 2012.
Mr. Lawrence holds a masters degree from Eastern Michigan University in Information Security and an undergraduate degree from the University of Tennessee in Political Science. Top