It all started in 1976 when the three of us that later became founders of the company, Carl H. Dubac, David L. Shumaker and Sidney S. Cox, agreed to become partners in a venture to provide engineering service and management support to the Naval Air Systems Command (NavAirSysCom) which at the time was located in the Pentagon City, VA complex. The venture began with the engagement of a lawyer (not a law firm) who advised us among many other items to first select a name for our company, incorporate in the State where we intended to do most of our work and also register in other States where we expected to work in the future. It sounded like a simple task but it took several name submissions before we finally found a name that was not already incorporated in VA and also not registered to do business in VA, MD and DC. We originally had hoped to register to conduct business in every State where Naval Aviation had a facility but the search process became too costly. Finally, it all became reality when the Analytical Sciences Corporation was incorporated in the Commonwealth of Virginia on April 14, 1977. As with most companies of the era, we used the capital initial letters of our name (ASC) as our acronym.
On August 9, 1977 our new company (ASC) received a letter from a law firm representing The Analytical Sciences Corporation (TASC) of Reading, MA. In it, TASC noted that the July 18, 1977 issue of the Commerce Business Daily stated that NavAirSysCom intended to negotiate with the Analytical Sciences Corporation to perform analysis of the A-6E TRAM program – this was to be our very first DOD contract. The letter further noted that since they (TASC) had been in the business of system performance analysis, design and evaluation since 1966, they were of the opinion that by us using our name in conjunction with the services being in essence of similar nature by both companies in the same area would result in confusion and constituted trademark infringement and possibly unfair competition. They concluded by requesting that we immediately cease to use the acronym (ASC) and the name Analytical Sciences Corporation. Obviously, it was a day that I can only describe as being one where we went from a three week flush of victory brought on by the award of our first contract to the anxiety of facing a potential disaster because of legal action caused by our company name.
Needless to say, we engaged a specialized law firm who conducted a thorough review which revealed that TASC was already in a similar conflict with another company known as TASK and that TASC was incorporated in Delaware but was not registered to do business as a foreign Corporation in the same jurisdiction where we (ASC) were already incorporated. In essence, TASC really had no grounds for a case against us. However, on advice of our counsel and in an effort to avoid any further complications and possible court actions, we agreed to have our counsel negotiate an agreement with TASC’s counsel wherein we would change our name provided TASC would pay the costs associated with the name change to include our legal fees. The negotiations were completely successful and we began an earnest search for a new name.
Again, the guidance from counsel was to consider using just letters as the name rather than as before where the name lead to an acronym both of which could be challenged. In other words, make the name of the company and its acronym the same. They also noted that it would be much cheaper searching for available names to incorporate in a State and register in other jurisdictions if you used three to four letters as the name. Since the first letter of our first names were CDS and the first letter of our last names were DSC (see the first paragraph of the story for our full names), we gave them these three letters. As these letters could be arranged in six (6) different combinations, we asked that each be run through the process until the first one passed the criteria that (1) it could be incorporated in VA and (2) registered to do business in VA, MD and DC. Because of the possibility that none of the six combinations of these three letters would meet our criteria, we also authorized the use of the same letters squared (CDS2). DCS was the first combination that fit and on January 12, 1978, DCS Corporation replaced Analytical Sciences Corporation.
So, what do the initials “DCS” stand for? As explained, it is simply three letters whose source was the first letter of the three founder’s first and last names. So one could say it stands for Dubac, Cox, Shumaker while another could say it stands for Dave, Carl, Sid. But in the real world, what is of far more importance is what DCS has come to mean and represent. In that regard, it stands for the employees, past and present, who have made DCS Corporation the fantastic company that exists today. Accordingly, it can honestly be said that the initials “DCS” stand for its employee-owner’s:
Dazzling Capable Source of talent
Doing Consistently Superior work
Developing Customer Satisfaction
Demonstrating Conspicuous Superiority
And now you know the “complete” story about our name.
– Carl Dubac