Katie Bigelow, Founder

With the vision of Warfighters Serving Warfighters, this defense contracting company focuses on three primary competencies including program management, engineering, and business development. Mettle Ops launched in 2013 and now holds over $13M in contracts that focus on materials and solutions for soldier survivability.  Katie’s nontraditional approach continues to redefine the government defense space.

Katie served her country as a soldier for more than 10 years. As an Army Aviator, she piloted and commanded missions in Korea and Iraq as well as the United States. Katie spent the bulk of her aviation career as a medical evacuation pilot carrying injured American heroes from the battlefield to safety.

The Bigelow family motto is “Never Give Up”. Katie and Mark raise their own army of seven children in Sterling Heights, Michigan.


Mark Bigelow, VP of Operations

As a strong leader, mentor, manager, and business developer, Mark Bigelow manages programs and develops Mettle Ops to cultivate company growth. He’s a visionary who specializes in building strong relationships, strategic thinking, and creative solutions. Mark’s accomplishments range from serving as the first Manager for Michigan Area Operation to capturing a $9 million sole source contract to support TARDEC with T&E Survivability support. Mark brings dynamic project management skills and leadership experience while serving as the Vice President of Operations at Mettle Ops.

Mark served his country as a US Army Artillery officer and Acquisition Corps officer and bravely led 100 soldiers and 27 combat vehicles in Operation Iraqi Freedom. He has retired after more than 23 years of active duty and will always be a leader of soldiers at heart.