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From the Director


  • Submitted on 19 February 2014

    Created on February 19, 2014
     

    I am honored to serve as the Agency’s Acting National Director. In this capacity, I will continue to promote our Agency’s important mission and the stellar work of minority-owned businesses.

  • Submitted on 06 January 2014

    Created on January 7, 2014
     

    David Hinson, National Director Dear Friends,

    After four and a half years as National Director of the Minority Business Development Agency, I am leaving the Agency to return to the private sector on January 15, 2014. It has been a privilege to work with each and every one of you and to serve the American people under the leadership of President Obama and four Commerce Department secretaries, including Secretary Pritzker.

    During my tenure as National Director, we worked to help the U.S. economy rebound from the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. Like nearly every other federal agency, MBDA carried out its work under flat or reduced budgets, all while the demand for Agency services continued to increase. Despite these challenges, we experienced one of the most productive periods in Agency history. We increased funding for our national business center program for the first time in 15 years and we provided targeted support to our clients in the areas of manufacturing, healthcare technology, government contracting and exporting. We also increased bottom-line support for minority-owned firms by helping them get over $19 billion in capital and contract awards, resulting in the creation and/or retention of over 50,000 jobs.

  • Submitted on 10 December 2013

    Created on December 10, 2013
     

    David Hinson, National DirectorOne of the real joys of the holiday season is having the opportunity to say thank you. As the year ends and the Agency reflects on all the things we are grateful for, MBDA’s relationship with you, our stakeholders, is especially treasured. Your continued partnership throughout this year has greatly contributed to our success in increasing the growth and global competitiveness of minority-owned businesses.

    MBDA is proud to have reached a number of special milestones this year. In particular: we awarded $7.3 million in grants to boost job creation through the funding of seven new MBDA Business Centers; we made a supplemental investment of $625,000 to five existing MBDA Business Centers to better serve minority business communities nationwide; we launched a national webinar series that highlighted the resources of the government in support of international trade, federal contracting, and industry specific initiatives; and, we commemorated a 31-year history of celebrating minority-owned businesses and stakeholders during National Minority Enterprise Week, December 1-7, 2013, as designated by Presidential Proclamation.

  • Submitted on 04 November 2013

    As we celebrate Native American Heritage Month the Minority Business Development Agency would like to pay tribute to the rich ancestry and traditions of Native Americans. While we take great pride in honoring their many accomplishments and contributions to American society, I want to highlight their contributions to the U.S. economy and the minority business community. Here are some quick facts about the Native American business community:

    • There are 236,000 Native American-owned firms in the U.S.

    • 10 percent have paid employees (average 8 per firm), and over $1.2 million in annual receipts.

    • This sector generates $34.4 billion in annual economic output.

    • Native American-owned firms employ 185,000 workers.

    MBDA continues to invest in Indian Country to support job creation and economic development through the operation of MBDA Business Centers in states with large American Indian populations. MBDA now has six centers addressing the unique economic challenges and opportunities in Indian Country. The centers are located in Alaska, California, Connecticut, North Dakota, New Mexico, and Oklahoma.

  • Submitted on 12 September 2013

    Created on September 12, 2013
     

    David Hinson, National Director Last month the United States Government partnered with the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia to host the 2013 U.S.—Sub-Saharan Africa Trade and Economic Cooperation Forum in one of East Africa’s largest and most vibrant cities, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.  Senior U.S. Government officials and business leaders, along with their counterparts from African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA)-eligible nations, discussed a range of trade and investment-related issues that are likely to have a significant impact on the future of Sub-Saharan Africa. 

    AGOA is the most important trade legislation between the United States and Sub-Saharan Africa to date, and has paved the way for new product exports to the United States, including cut flowers, horticultural, automotive products, and steel. Textile, apparel goods and agricultural products, a promising area for new AGOA trade, were added in 2009.  Since being signed into law in 2000, AGOA has resulted in substantial growth of the African apparel industry, adding 350,000 new jobs in Sub-Saharan Africa, and about 100,000 jobs in the United States. 

  • Submitted on 28 August 2013

    Created on August 28, 2013
     

    Martin Luther King - March on WashingtonFifty years ago this week, on August 28, 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered one of the most consequential speeches in American history. Standing in the shadow of the Lincoln Memorial before nearly a quarter million Americans from nearly every corner of the nation, Dr. King articulated his vision of a more just and equitable America, creating  a powerful weapon in his non-violent crusade for civil rights.

    His goal was simply stated, easy to understand and remarkably consistent with what he believed throughout his entire life.  He wanted social and economic justice for all.  In fact, he spoke about justice 11 times in his famous speech, exactly the same number of times he used the word “dream.”

    My office, the Minority Business Development Agency, is located directly across the street from the Willard Hotel where Dr. King prepared his notes and rested the night before he spoke.  When I look in that direction now, 50 years later, I wonder what might have been going through the minds of those who were there with him on the mall, or those who saw him live on television. Did they realize they were witnessing such an historic moment?

  • Submitted on 23 August 2013

    Created on August 23, 2013
     

    Each year, since 1955, Fortune Magazine ranks the 500 largest corporations in the United States.  Corporations that are part of the Fortune 500, purchase goods and services from other businesses which in turn support thousands of other companies and millions of jobs across the nation.  Becoming a supplier to a major corporation is a growth strategy that many minority-owned firms incorporate into their business plans, and Fortune 500 corporations have responded by launching supplier diversity programs.  Some are more successful than others. 

    The Billion Dollar Roundtable (BDR) was created 12 years ago to identify and honor those Fortune 500 corporations that have embraced the value of working with diverse suppliers and procuring quality products and services to satisfy their corporate needs.   Every corporation that is a member of the Billion Dollar Roundtable is formally committed to procuring at least $1 billion annually in goods and services from minority and women-owned businesses.  Today, there are 18 corporate members of the BDR, with many more on their way to achieving the $1 billion threshold.

  • Submitted on 15 August 2013

    Created on August 15, 2013
     

    David Hinson, National DirectorFifty years ago, on August 28, 1963, on the 100th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, Martin Luther King Jr. led a “March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom” that culminated at the Lincoln Memorial.  A quarter of a million traveled to Washington, DC, to hear what Dr. King had to say.  Millions more listened on television and radio.

    The day began with Marian Anderson, one of the greatest singers of the 20th century, singing the National Anthem. The day ended with Dr. King delivering one of the greatest speeches ever given in American history.

    It is interesting to note that no one ever called Dr. King’s speech the “I Have a Dream” speech until after he finished it.  The original title of his speech was “The Cancelled Check.”  He also called it “The Normalcy Speech.”  Dr. King chose those titles because an important part of his speech was about jobs. America, he said, was defaulting on a “promissory note insofar as her citizens of color are concerned.”  He said “America has given… a bad check, a check which has come back marked ‘insufficient funds’” because of discrimination in jobs, limited job mobility, jobs that offered only minimum wages and high unemployment for the rest.

  • Submitted on 10 July 2013

    Created on July 10, 2013
     

    David Hinson, National Director

    The numbers are in and the report is out! Last month, the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) released its Annual Performance Report for Fiscal Year 2012 and we are proud to report that FY 2012 was another successful year for the Minority Business Development Agency, the U.S. Department of Commerce, and most importantly for the American business owners that we serve. In FY 2012, MBDA helped create and retain 16,730 jobs, the highest level in the 44-year history of the Agency. This was achieved by helping MBDA clients obtain over $3.6 billion in contracts and capital awards.

    In 2012, the agency increased services to minority business owners by adding new MBDA Business Centers in Anchorage, Alaska; Fresno, California; Santa Fe, New Mexico; Bismarck, North Dakota; Tulsa, Oklahoma; and Memphis, Tennessee. In addition, MBDA expanded coverage at select MBDA Business Centers to provide specialty expertise nationwide with the launch of the agency’s Federal Procurement Center – the first of its type – in Washington, DC; the Export Support Business Center located at the University of Texas at San Antonio; and the Atlanta MBDA Business Center that serves as the Advanced Manufacturing and Healthcare Technology Business Center at the Georgia Institute of Technology.   

    As we look ahead, MBDA will maintain jobs created and retained by clients as its key measurement of performance; however, a new Agency goal will focus on creating and retaining those jobs by generating international contract opportunities. Currently exporting to over 60 nations, minority-owned firms possess skills and relationships that make them one of the most effective exporters in the United States. In FY 2012, MBDA’s export support resulted in nearly $100 million in export transactions, and we plan to generate over $1 billion in international contract opportunities over the next five years. 

  • Submitted on 14 June 2013

    Created on June 14, 2013
     

    David Hinson, National Director Earlier this month I was invited to give the commencement address for the 2013 graduates of the New York City College of Technology (CUNY). I began my remarks with a true story of how I prepared for my speech by going skydiving. I jumped out of a perfectly good airline at an altitude of 13,500 feet in an attempt to clear my head and gain perspective of the words of wisdom that I wanted to impart.  We all laughed when I confessed that as soon as I stood in the doorway of the plane, having heard the instructor yell “GO – GO – GO”, preparing for the commencement address was not my first thought . . . and honestly, not the second or third.

    However, when I landed safely and reflected on all of the emotions that I felt at “jump altitude” – my extreme experience not only informed my commencement address but also made me ponder the many interactions I have had over the years with MBDA clients that share their excitement and anxiety about their future direction and growth.

    Although the topics have varied, in recent months, the dialogue has centered on the Affordable Care Act and what it means for minority businesses. While many business owners have acknowledged that an improved health care system will make a huge difference in the lives of millions of Americans, there is still uncertainty of how the provisions will impact their business operations.

Did you know...

Number of jobs created as a result of services provided by MBDA business centers during the last 5 fiscal years.
Graph for New Jobs Created

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