Category: News

NMSDC Inducts New Corporate Plus Members

NMSDC Inducts New Corporate Plus Members

Corporate Plus Induction at the Forum Header Image

During the 2023 Minority Business Economic Forum in Miami last month, NMSDC introduced a new cohort of Corporate Plus members. The Corporate Plus program is an unprecedented membership program for NMSDC-certified minority businesses of the highest caliber. This program was created to address corporations’ requests for assistance in locating minority suppliers with the capacity to fulfill national contracts.

The most recent inductees include:

“The latest group of Corporate Plus members and their accomplishments reflect what is possible when we focus on accelerating MBE growth and reach towards NMSDC’s goal of $1 trillion in annual revenue for certified MBEs,” said Director of Corporate Plus Lorena Valencia.

Corporate Plus members have demonstrated a capacity to execute national contracts for major corporations. NMSDC national corporate members nominate MBEs for this designation, which elevates their profile among national corporate members and facilitates the MBEs broader participation throughout the NMSDC network.

NMSDC recently received a multi-year, $500,000 grant from the Blackstone Charitable Foundation to expand the program and looks forward to adding additional members in the coming years.

Learn more about Corporate Plus on the NMSDC website at

NMSDC Issues 2023 Annual Conference & Exchange Call for Proposals

NMSDC Issues 2023 Annual Conference & Exchange Call for Proposals

Submit a Proposal for the NMSDC Annual Conference & Exchange

The National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) is excited to announce the official call for proposals for the 2023 NMSDC Annual Conference & Exchange taking place October 22 – 25 in Baltimore. This year’s theme is Close the Equity Gap. We must come together to identify the barriers facing our community. It will take a coalition of organizations, industry leaders, business owners, and changes in policy to reach economic equity. We need innovative and transformative solutions. That’s where you come in!

NMSDC is looking for proposed breakout sessions, power talks, and interactive engagements in the following categories:

Closing the Access Gap
From global markets to public policy and capital to contracts, minority business enterprises (MBEs) are facing access barriers that must be solved to close the equity gap. At the same time, corporations need access to MBEs in emerging industries, those that can scale for contract success to fulfill their equity and spending pledges. Proposals should identify barriers to and solutions for closing the access gap.

Closing the Knowledge/Skills Gap
MBEs must be ready to capitalize on emerging markets and the green economy while also passing the torch to the next generation. They need the knowledge and skills to build relationships, fill their sales funnel, and win contracts. At the same time, corporations need to further their DEI and ESG initiatives, move beyond supplier diversity to business diversity, and train the next generation of procurement professionals. Proposals should provide practical advice and training for closing the knowledge/skills gap.

Closing the Relationship Gap
From mergers and acquisitions to joint ventures and strategic alliances to MBE-to-MBE contracting, building strategic relationships is the key to an MBE’s success. At the same time, it is vital for corporations to follow through with their commitments to MBEs, work with them and other partners as industries shift, and build long-lasting relationships with nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and others to further DEI and ESG initiatives. Proposals should focus on closing relationship gaps within the NMSDC community.

Closing Other Gaps
If you have an interactive and informative proposal that doesn’t fit into one of the categories above, we still want to hear from you! Proposals should identify the gap and potential or tested solutions for closing it.

To submit a proposal, visit

More information about conference registration and hotel accommodation will be coming soon. In the meantime, we look forward to receiving your amazing ideas for closing the equity gap and accelerating MBE growth.

NMSDC Announces 2023 Emerging Young Entrepreneurs

NMSDC Announces 2023 Emerging Young Entrepreneurs

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Today, the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) announced the eighth cohort of the Emerging Young Entrepreneurs (EYE) program. EYE is a nine-month experience uniquely designed to provide the next generation of minority entrepreneur participants with support to enhance their growing business. This year’s Emerging Young Entrepreneurs are:

“The 2023 EYE cohort is the largest in NMSDC’s history and reflects our commitment to accelerating MBE growth as we march towards our goal of $1 trillion in annual revenue for NMSDC-certified MBEs,” said NMSDC Senior Director of Strategic Alliances and Programs Jetheda Hernandez.

NMSDC provides cohort members the skills, tools, and strategies to start or grow their innovative businesses. EYE participants are matched with mentors from corporate sponsors, MBEs, and additional stakeholders and engage in an interactive pre- and post-conference (NMSDC Annual Conference & Exchange) curriculum along with five days of hands-on training and practical application.

For more information on the EYE program visit

NMSDC’s Second Annual Minority Business Economic Forum Sparks the Next Wave of Economic Equity

NMSDC’s Second Annual Minority Business Economic Forum Sparks the Next Wave of Economic Equity

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Earlier this month, some of the country’s top corporate, government, minority businesses, capital providers, and thought leaders came together in Miami for NMSDC’s Second Annual Minority Business Economic Forum. Co-hosted by MasTec Chairman Jose Mas and Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, the event focused on the systemic barriers many minority business enterprises (MBEs) face and developing solutions to overcome them to build a more inclusive economy that works for all.

The event kicked off on Monday, May 8 with a welcome reception at the beautiful W South Beach. After the reception attendees attended one of two dinners, the first hosted by Jose Mas at his home and another at the Red Rooster in historic Overtown, a community that has a rich and storied history for Miami’s Black community. These opening events set the tone for what was to be a productive and meaningful event of relationship-building for attendees.

The next morning, the main programming got started in earnest with opening remarks that included the official announcement by NMSDC CEO and President Ying McGuire that the 2022 NMSDC Minority Businesses Economic Impact Report was being released that day. Following the announcement, McGuire held a brief fireside chat with Forum co-chairs, Mas and Mayor Suarez.

Building on their insightful conversation, U.S. Senator Marco Rubio delivered a keynote speech that emphasized the promise of the American dream for minority-owned businesses.

After the senator’s inspirational call to action, an impressive panel of minority business owners who have built multi-billion-dollar MBEs shared their stories with attendees and emphasized how they leverage their success to give back to and build generational wealth for their communities. Speakers on the panel included James H. Lowry Associates CEO and Founder Jim Lowry, Bally Chairman Soo Kim, Zones Chairman and CEO Firoz Lalji, and Forum Co-chair and MasTec CEO Jose Mas.

Following an induction ceremony for the newest Corporate Plus members, Republica Havas CEO and Co-founder Jorge Plasencia moderated a timely panel featuring c-suite leaders from Flagstar Bank and Denny’s who shared solutions for MBEs looking to weather the uncertain business tides presented by COVID-19, inflation, recession fears, and other unprecedented geopolitical issues.

Not to be outdone, the last main stage session of the day featured former NFL players turned successful entrepreneurs, Cris Carter and Adam Walker whose mix of humorous anecdotes and emotionally poignant life stories captured the imaginations and attention of both the MBEs in the audience looking to emulate their success and the corporate leaders looking to build stronger business relationships with those MBEs.

Before breaking for the day, NMSDC had one more surprise for attendees — a special live satellite appearance from the executive director of Beyoncé’s BeyGOOD foundation, Ivy McGregor, who announced a partnership between BeyGOOD and NMSDC focused on recruiting Black entrepreneurs to the Black Parade Route luncheons.

After a brief break, attendees came together at the impressive 1111 Lincoln Road, to recognize this year’s Equity Honors awardees. Emceed by MSNBC’s Katie Phang, the ceremony and dinner were full of entertainment (including a performance from Miami Arts Studio 6-12 @ Zelda Glazer students), great conversation, and the celebration of the top corporate leaders at the vanguard of economic equity and minority business integration.

The final day of the Forum kicked off with programming that focused on three main themes, increasing access to capital, enabling MBEs to leverage recent investments by the federal government, and building generational wealth for communities of color.

After brief opening remarks from McGuire, attendees heard from two amazing panels focused on capital. The first featured leaders from Kapor Capital, Apis Holdings, Avance Investment Management, and Loop Capital sharing their vision for reimagining the capital ecosystem to better support MBEs.

Following their words of wisdom, representatives of Barclays and NMSDC Entrepreneur in Residence Kurt Trevan took the stage to announce the official launch of the Capital Manager’s Program, an effort aimed at assisting capital providers and related service companies to more easily connect with minority business enterprises (MBEs) to provide the funds needed to grow and scale their businesses.

In the wake of this groundbreaking announcement, corporate leaders from NBC Universal, Ariel Investments, Target, Lincoln Financial, and Lenovo engaged in an equally robust discussion about how building generational wealth for communities of color requires going beyond supplier diversity and shared how their companies are leading the way in the movement to a more holistic business diversity.

Up next was an impactful panel led by Under Secretary of Commerce for Minority Business Development Don Cravins Jr. featuring former U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Henry Cisneros and White House Senior Advisor and Infrastructure Coordinator Mitch Landrieu. The session focused on how recent unprecedented federal investments have created an opportunity for MBEs to help build the industries of tomorrow.

The main stage concluded its panel discussions with a conversation of chief procurement officers from some of the nation’s leading companies in supplier diversity including Ampcus, JP Morgan Chase, Truist, Bristol-Meyers Squibb, and Accenture on the core purpose of the Minority Business Economic Forum, building generational wealth for communities of color through increased opportunities for MBEs.

The Forum ended with one final surprise when McGuire and a representative from the Blackstone Charitable Foundation took the stage to announce a multi-year, $500,000 grant aimed at connecting more MBEs with major employers through NMSDC’s Corporate Plus program.

NMSDC is grateful to all the speakers, sponsors, and attendees who made this year’s Minority Business Economic Forum a success and we can’t wait to see you all again this fall at the NMSDC Annual Conference & Exchange in Baltimore to continue these important conversations!

Remembering WIPP President and CEO Candace Waterman

Remembering WIPP President and CEO Candace Waterman

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NMSDC was incredibly saddened to learn about the sudden passing of Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP) CEO and president, Candace Waterman on May 19. She leaves behind a legacy of leadership for the progress of women and minority-owned businesses that will not be forgotten.

With over 35 years of experience, she served as a tireless advocate for the over 12 million women-owned companies in the U.S. She worked in a bipartisan manner with lawmakers to affect and influence policy that created greater economic equity, procurement inclusion, and access to the global marketplace.

As a U.S. delegate of the Women20 (W20) Women Entrepreneurship Working Group of the G20 countries, Candace was recognized as a global thought leader and subject matter expert. Her commitment to diversity, inclusion, and operational excellence earned her numerous awards and recognition including the 2019 WBE Hall of Fame Recipient and the 2019 Top Executives in Diversity. Additionally, she held seats on the American Contract Compliance Association (ACCA) board of directors and the Essence Entrepreneurial Advisory Council for Essence Magazine.

“A great friend of NMSDC and a fellow committee member of the Council for Underserved Communities at U.S. Small Business Administration, we lost a devoted champion for equity and diversity, a passionate advocate for diverse businesses, and an authentic leader impacting all of us.  Her legacy lives on through our continued work on economic equity and inclusive growth,” said NMSDC CEO and President Ying McGuire.

We extend our sincerest condolences to her family, friends, and colleagues. Candace’s leadership and dedication to the plight of women and minority business owners will be missed by everyone in the NMSDC network. We hope to honor her legacy in our continued work to accelerate minority business growth and create long-lasting generational wealth for the communities of color we serve.

A memorial service to honor Candace will be held Thursday, June 29 from 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. at the Washington National Cathedral in Washington, DC. Learn more about the service on the WIPP website.

NMSDC Receives $500,000 Grant from Blackstone to Expand Corporate Plus Program

NMSDC Receives $500,000 Grant from Blackstone to Expand Corporate Plus Program

At the Minority Business Economic Forum in Miami, the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) announced it has received a multi-year grant totaling $500,000 from the Blackstone Charitable Foundation to connect minority-owned businesses with major employers through its Corporate Plus program. Operating for over 25 years, Corporate Plus enables vetted, certified minority business enterprises (MBEs) to adequately scale their business, so they are better able to execute national and global contracts. This grant will enable NMSDC to expand and increase the impact of the program by:

  • Growing Corporate Plus membership by 20% year-over-year.
  • Facilitating increased direct corporate introductions to MBEs.
  • Driving an overall revenue growth rate for Corporate Plus members exceeding the national average.
  • Increasing capacity building for MBEs focused on meeting industry gap areas.

“All too often MBEs are associated primarily with the small business community. While this may be true in many cases, Corporate Plus recognizes that there are also numerous large, minority-owned businesses that are primed to do business on a national and global scale,” said NMSDC Chief Growth Officer Sylvia Acosta, Ph.D. “This program has helped many MBEs take the next step in their business development and we are excited for the acceleration in MBE growth that will no doubt result from Blackstone’s support of this program,” she added.

“At Blackstone, we believe supporting the growth of diverse businesses delivers strong performance, drives entrepreneurship, and builds a more resilient supply chain,” said Blackstone Charitable Foundation Executive Director Maura Pally. “Blackstone is thrilled to be supporting NMSDC as we seek to enable our portfolio companies to align their supply base with their consumer base.”

NMSDC is extremely grateful to Blackstone for its support of this program as the two organizations work together to achieve NMSDC’s ambitious goal of $1 trillion in annual revenue for certified-MBEs and its larger vision of eliminating the racial wealth gap and building long-lasting, generational wealth for communities of color.

To learn more about the Corporate Plus program visit the NMSDC website at

NMSDC Launches Capital Manager’s Program

NMSDC Launches Capital Manager’s Program

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At its Minority Business Economic Forum this past week, the National Minority Supplier Council (NMSDC) and Barclays announced the official launch of the Capital Manager’s Program to assist capital providers and related services to more easily connect with minority business enterprises (MBEs) to provide funds needed to grow and scale their businesses. The initiative is being launched thanks to the initial support of $100,000 from Barclays. The first goal of the program is to establish the largest and most comprehensive database of capital providers and services firms that have an ethnic minority founder and/or a particular focus on MBEs.

NMSDC is making the database, which includes over 500 firms, publicly available. Not only will it reduce the burden on MBEs to find the right capital partner, but it also includes organizations that provide capacity-building services to MBEs.

“With this new program, NMSDC is hoping to enhance returns and de-risk investments for capital managers focused on the MBE ecosystem,” said NMSDC Entrepreneur in Residence Kurtis Trevan. “Ultimately, this program, in conjunction with NMSDC’s current Growth Initiative, is about rapidly increasing the amount of capital available to MBEs and helping NMSDC get one step closer to its goal of $1 trillion in annual revenue for NMSDC-certified MBEs,” he added.

According to a recent study from the Harvard Business School, minority-owned capital managers are three to four times more likely than white investors to fund minority entrepreneurs. Furthermore, according to a study from the Knight Foundation, these firms only manage .7% of U.S. Assets Under Management. That is despite findings from the National Association of Investment Companies that these very same firms experience higher returns than their majority-owned counterparts.

“The data is clear. Not only do we need to make access more readily available to minority-owned businesses, but we also need to ensure more capital flows to both capital management firms owned by individuals from those communities and firms that are focused on these communities,” said Barclays Global Co-head of Capital Markets Travis Barnes, “We’re excited and grateful to partner with NMSDC on this critical issue,” he added.

The Capital Manager’s Program is part of NMSDC’s continued effort to accelerate MBE growth and help build long-lasting generational wealth for communities of color in the United States. To learn more about this program, contact the Capital Manager’s Program at

NMSDC Announces 2023 Equity Honors Winners

NMSDC Announces 2023 Equity Honors Winners

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the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) announced this year’s Equity Honors awardees during a reception and dinner at the Minority Business Economic Forum in Miami. NMSDC’s newest awards program, The Equity Honors, recognizes chief corporate officers identified by their peers as staunch leaders at the forefront of economic equity and minority business integration. These awards reflect NMSDC’s strong belief that building a more equitable economy requires focusing on business diversity at all levels of corporate America. The 2023 winners are:

Chief Executive Officer of the Year
Robert Davis, Merck & Co, Inc.

Chief Diversity Officer of the Year
Lottie Holland, Stellantis

Chief Financial Officer of the Year
Caroline Litchfield, Merck & Co, Inc.

Chief Information Officer of the Year
Sabina Ewing, Abbott

Chief Marketing Officer of the Year
Gerald Youngblood, Lenovo (United States), Inc.

Chief Operations Officer of the Year
Mark Stewart, Stellantis

Chief Procurement Officer of the Year
Brad Pomerleau, Target Corp.

“These winners represent the bold decisive leaders who are breaking open legacy circles of influence and creating opportunities to usher in the talent, perspectives, and expertise from our nation’s communities of color that have been ignored for far too long,” said NMSDC CEO and President Ying McGuire. “Visionaries like these are leading the charge as we march towards our shared vision of $1 trillion in annual revenue for NMSDC-certified MBEs,” she added.

Nominations were solicited from NMSDC’s certified minority business enterprises (MBEs) and NMSDC corporate members. Winners were determined by a panel of supplier diversity practitioners. For more information about the NMSDC Equity Honors including who was nominated for this year’s awards, please visit

NMSDC Releases Its Yearly Minority Businesses Economic Impact Report

NMSDC Releases Its Yearly Minority Businesses Economic Impact Report

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The National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) announced the release of the 2022 Minority Businesses Economic Impact Report during its Minority Business Economic Forum in Miami. The report gives valuable insight into understanding NMSDC-certified minority business enterprises’ (MBEs) role in the U.S. economy and how they are leading the next wave of economic equity and business diversity. Building on findings from 2021, this year’s report aims to accomplish three primary goals:

  • Track progress towards NMSDC’s ambitious goal to reach $1 trillion in NMSDC-certified MBE annual revenue.
  • Uncover any disparities that exist between NMSDC-certified MBEs to provide direction in programming and development efforts to address them.
  • Provide regional and state-level growth data to better focus and align the NMSDC network’s advocacy efforts.

“Last year we celebrated our 50th anniversary by setting an audacious goal to reach $1 trillion in annual revenue for NMSDC-certified MBEs. This year’s Minority Businesses Economic Impact report reflects our progress toward that goal as we ride the next wave of MBE growth and get closer to our ultimate goal of ending the racial wealth gap,” said NMSDC CEO and President Ying McGuire.

The report shows the growing impact that NMSDC-certified MBEs are having on the U.S. economy including:

  • $316.2 billion in total annual revenues for certified MBEs (a 21% increase from 2021).
  • $482.1 billion in total economic activity.
  • 1.8 million U.S. jobs supported.
  • $136.4 billion in total wages.

In addition, in 2022, annual revenue for MBES increased across each of the communities of color NMSDC serves:

  • Asian Pacific revenue totaled $94.4 billion, a 34.9% increase from 2021.
  • Hispanic revenue totaled $77.7 billion, a 23.3% increase from 2021.
  • Asian Indian revenue totaled $71 billion, a 20.3% increase from 2021.
  • Black revenue totaled $59.6 billion, a 4.6% increase from 2021.
  • Native American revenue totaled $13.5 billion, a 12.5% increase from 2021.

The report also showed that:

  • Asian Indian businesses account for 16% of NMSDC-certified MBEs.
  • Asian Pacific businesses account for 12% of NMSDC-certified MBEs.
  • Black businesses account for 41% of NMSDC-certified MBEs.
  • Hispanic businesses account for 28% of NMSDC-certified MBEs.
  • Native American businesses account for 3% of NMSDC-certified MBEs.

“While NMSDC was excited to see continued growth across all the communities it serves in this year’s Minority Businesses Impact Report, it also highlights the disparity that Black businesses continue to face in the United States, said NMSDC Senior Vice President of Success Fernando Martinez. “We are dedicated to working with our corporate members, MBEs and other strategic partners to explore how we can enact and promote solutions that address this inequity,” he added.