Deanne Caspers-Moon needed advice and she needed it right away. As the project manager at Caspers Construction Co. in Beatrice, she was fighting the clock trying to complete a complex bid on a contract. It was already afternoon and a delivery service was going to pick up the completed bid at 7 p.m. She turned to the place she knew could help: the Nebraska Business Development Center in Auburn.
Caspers-Moon called the NBDC office and spoke with Julie Ann Wilhelm, government contracting counselor. Wilhelm listened to Caspers-Moon describe her predicament. She knew there was no time to waste. "I stopped what I was doing and drove to Beatrice,"
Wilhelm recalls. "We sat down and reviewed the language in the solicitation."
To be absolutely positive about her advice, Wilhelm telephoned Scott Knapp, certified contracting assistance specialist in the Kearney regional office of NBDC. "Scott confirmed what I thought, and DeAnne felt comfortable completing her bid and sending it out that evening," Wilhelm says. "As a result of the immediate service I was able to provide, after a couple-hour drive, she was successful in being awarded the contract."
Caspers Construction has been in business since 1974. It was founded and is still owned by Caspers-Moon’s mother, Elsie, and her father, Eugene Caspers, who had served in Vietnam as a Seabee, the members of the U.S. Navy Construction Battalions. "Back then it was pretty much just him and one other guy," Caspers-Moon says. "Mom did the books for him."
Caspers-Moon earned a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and was working for an Omaha telemarketing firm, specifically on site selection and new building construction, when she came to a realization. "I figured that as the only child, if I was going to be involved in construction, I might as well go back to the family business."
Caspers Construction focuses on general contracting and finds no job too large or too small. Along with Sampson Construction of Lincoln, Caspers Construction served as contractors for the new Beatrice Community Hospital and Health Center, which opened in 2012.
Wilhelm originally contacted Caspers-Moon to introduce herself and the services NBDC make available. "Right away, Julie started emailing me links to federal contract opportunities that fit our profile," she says. "She took a real interest in our success."
While dropping everything and rushing to Beatrice to assist with a contract may seem extraordinary, "I don’t think it’s that unusual for Julie," Caspers-Moon says. "She is always willing to go above and beyond to help us out." That means a lot.