15 Years of Danya

Fifteen years ago, I was the Senior Vice President at a company when the CEO called us into a conference room and informed us that the company was filing for bankruptcy. I took that as a sign that it was time to start my own company. So in 1996, I formed Danya International, Inc. The name Danya came from my kids’ names—Daniella, Yaniv, and soon after, Daphna. I wanted to build a company that would make a positive social contribution. I was a clinical psychologist and had managed mental health and drug treatment programs, and I enjoyed doing that, but I felt I was reaching a limited number of people. I wanted to focus on public health communications to have a broader reach. I also wanted to build a healthy, profitable business that could withstand the ups and downs of business and markets.

Thus, I began writing proposals in my basement for government contracts and grants, focusing on Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contracts with the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and drawing on my expertise in addiction treatment and research. SBIRs require a combination of research skills, business capability, and innovative thinking to develop and evaluate evidence-based products that can be commercialized in the private sector. With the help of some friends, we were able to win a few $100,000 contracts. About 9 months after forming the company, I opened Danya’s first small office and hired a few people to get started.

We strung together four Phase I contracts over the first 18 months, and then we all had to take long vacations until we heard that we were awarded some larger Phase II contracts. Then we began to expand with other work at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and other National Institutes of Health (NIH) agencies. In year 4, we won the Office of Head Start (OHS) Monitoring Support Contract, which took us to a new level, and we have held that important contract for more than 11 years. We expanded into the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) with the award of the National Prevention Information Network (NPIN) contract for HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted diseases, tuberculosis, and hepatitis; the U.S. State Department; the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD); and even the U.S. Navy, along with several other agencies.

So with a vision of Innovative Solutions for Social Impact that has evolved over the past 15 years, we have won more than 150 contracts and grants that have allowed us to make a contribution by helping to reduce addictions, prevent diseases, promote the health and education of young children and their families, educate about mental health, and promote diversity and inclusion in everything we do. With more than 200 outstanding employees, 800 talented and dedicated consultants, and offices in Silver Spring, Atlanta, and Nairobi, we are helping the U.S. government make a difference in the lives of many people around the world, as demonstrated by the various projects, products, and services described throughout the Danya Web site. Please take a look at our work.

Thank you very much.

Jeffrey A. Hoffman, Ph.D.
Chief Executive Officer


One thought on “15 Years of Danya

  1. Jeff, thanks for sharing the beginnings of Danya International. I’ve enjoyed being a part of this wonderful organization. Your ability to be so resourceful has really paid off.

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