May 24, 2024

Pat Canciglia: SWaM Champion

Pat Canciglia, UMW's senior contracting officer and SWaM Champion for Procurement Services. Photo by Norm Shafer.

Pat Canciglia, UMW’s senior contracting officer and SWaM Champion for Procurement Services. Photo by Norm Shafer.

Pat Canciglia’s job is a bit like a puzzle, but as Mary Washington’s senior contracting officer for Procurement Services, she enjoys putting the pieces together.

These puzzles aren’t jigsaws or crosswords, she says, but complex conundrums requiring Canciglia’s skills and expertise – she spent 33 years working for the federal government – not to mention a robust knowledge of higher education rules and regulations. Since coming to UMW five years ago, she’s learned every day is different and brings new challenges.

“Some unique procurements require me to research and develop strategy to assure my customers get what they need, vendors are given equal opportunity to compete and purchases are fair and reasonably priced,” said Canciglia, who earned associate’s, bachelor’s and master’s degrees after interning with the Navy’s procurement office.

From Capital Outlay construction projects to purchases for Design Services and Alumni Relations, Canciglia helps Mary Washington employees secure a vast array of products and services. The University’s designated “SWaM Champion,” Canciglia also ensures that UMW meets its goal to support small, women-owned and minority-owned businesses. She often collaborates with UMW’s Small Business Development Center so these organizations get the resources they need to thrive.

Canciglia also champions micro vendors who earn less than $3 million in annual revenue and have no more than 25 employees. Some will be among the 50-plus businesses who will showcase their goods and services at the annual Supplier Expo on Tuesday, March 3, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., in the UC’s Chandler Ballroom.

“There are hourly door prizes and giveaways, Sodexo will provide the snacks, and the Fredericksburg Nationals will have a booth,” she said. “It’s a lot of fun!”


Q: Last year Procurement Services updated policies and procedures to comply with the governor’s recent executive order. Can you tell us about that?
A: Short and sweet, UMW is required to pay up to five percent more for a micro vendor product or service. We’ve been working to get those vendors who meet those parameters officially recognized as such, and we’ve also provided justifications for exceptions where there isn’t a micro vendor to fulfill the University’s need.

Q: What’s the most rewarding part of your job? The most challenging?
A: I enjoy finding procurement solutions for our customers, but it’s tough overcoming the perception that our office is the obstacle.

Q: What in your office means the most to you?
A: A George Bernard Shaw quote: “The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.”

Q: What would people be surprised to learn about you?
A: I have a motorcycle license but rarely use it.

Q: How do you spend your free time?
A: I like gardening, but I’m not particularly good at it. I love my new granddaughter, Emiko, and enjoy every minute spent with her.

Q: What’s the most inspiring book you’ve read?
A: I read The Bible regularly. Besides that, The Blue Sweater: Bridging the Gap Between Rich and Poor in an Interconnected World, by Jacqueline Novogratz.

Q: What’s your motto?
A: Mother Teresa’s “Anyway Poem” – “You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and your God; it was never between you and them anyway.”

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Sustainability Surplus at Procurement Services

Procurement Services is home to a large collection of surplus binders in all shapes and sizes. Due to a constant influx of bids and proposals for new contracts, we always have more binders than we need. Stop on by to see if we have something that fits your needs, or contact Pat Canciglia (x1237).

Help UMW stay green!