WASHINGTON (December 2, 2013) —The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) today recognized the 2013 National Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week Award winners. The winners include 12 organizations, businesses and individuals who have demonstrated leadership and commitment in advancing the minority business community. U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker presented the awards during a ceremony in Washington, DC.
“I am pleased to recognize and personally congratulate the 2013 National Minority Enterprise Development Week Award winners,” said Secretary Pritzker. “Helping American businesses grow and create jobs is the key focus of the Commerce Department’s ‘Open for Business Agenda,’ and today’s award recipients are playing a critical role in those efforts by helping minority-owned businesses innovate, expand and thrive.”
Winners were selected for the following awards: Ronald H. Brown Leadership Award; Champions of Minority Business Development; and Minority-Owned Firms. The awards are designed to celebrate and recognize outstanding achievements of minority entrepreneurs based on the challenges the business has overcome, total revenues, total jobs created and the economic impact the business has had on the community. MBDA also recognizes individuals and organizations that have demonstrated leadership and commitment in advancing the minority business community.
“These award recipients are pillars in their communities who help create jobs and keep our nation competitive in the global economy,” said David A. Hinson, MBDA National Director. “MBDA and the U.S. Department of Commerce are pleased to honor these outstanding leaders and firms and the entrepreneurial spirit they embody and promote.”
Here is the list of the 2013 National Minority Enterprise Development award winners:
- Ronald H. Brown Leadership Award was presented to Marie C. Johns, founder of L & L Consulting, LLC. This award recognizes individuals who have shown exceptional leadership and achieved significant success in creating diversity in the public or private sector. The award was inspired by the outstanding leadership of the late U.S. Secretary of Commerce Ronald H. Brown. Ms. Johns was recognized for over 30 years of exceptional leadership and commitment to being a champion for small businesses through economic empowerment and advocacy.
Champions of Minority Business Development:
- Advocate of the Year Award was presented to Linda B. Oliver, Deputy Director, Plans & Policy, Office of Small Business Programs, Department of Defense. This award is presented to an individual or organization that has demonstrated significant accomplishment in advocating minority business enterprise as an economic force in the global economy. Ms. Oliver has demonstrated a steadfast commitment to promoting small business development at every level within the Department of Defense and throughout the United States.
- Distinguished Supplier Diversity Award was presented to Lockheed Martin Corporation. This award is presented to an individual or organization whose business practices have had a significant impact on the growth and development of minority-owned firms. Over the past 20 years, Lockheed Martin has partnered with Native American-owned businesses to maintain a strong Native American supplier base that has resulted in increased contracting opportunities for minority-owned firms.
- Distinguished Supplier Diversity Award was presented to The Proctor & Gamble Company. This award is presented to an individual or organization whose business practices have had a significant impact on the growth and development of minority-owned firms. Procter & Gamble (P&G) was among the first consumer products companies to link supplier diversity with minority consumers purchasing decisions. Few corporations in America can match P&G’s level of spend with minority-owned businesses.
- Access to Capital Award was presented to Juan Carlos Diaz, First Vice President of Commercial Lending at United Bank of El Paso Del Norte. This award is presented to an individual or organization who has demonstrated outstanding leadership in the financial community by providing working or investment capital to minority-owned businesses. Diaz’s dedication and diverse client portfolio have greatly contributed to United Banks’ reputation for being the principal small business loan provider in the far West Texas area, which has resulted in job creation and business expansion for minority-owned firms.
- Champions of Minority Business Development: Media Award was presented to David Candelaria, Vice President and General Manager of Entravision Communications – Univision 26 El Paso. This award is presented to a print, broadcast or radio media organization that has achieved notable success in advancing public awareness of the positive impact of minority-owned businesses on the global economy. Entravision Communications is a diversified Spanish-language media company with a unique group of media assets including television stations, radio stations and digital platforms. Entravision is recognized for serving as an outlet for business advocates informing the community of the support available to established and aspiring entrepreneurs.
- Minority Retail Energy Firm of the Year was presented to Liberty Power Corporation. This award is presented to the minority-owned firm in the energy industry that has achieved notable success in providing quality products and services that resulted in improvement of the environment, proficiency, and customer satisfaction. Liberty Power is one of only four national retail electric providers licensed in 16 or more markets and is the only minority-owned, independent energy retailer with a national presence. The company has been recognized as one of the fastest growing Hispanic-owned businesses in the United States.
- Minority Manufacturer of the Year was presented to Bridgewater Interiors. This award is presented to a minority-owned firm that has achieved significant success in employing new and innovative techniques that led to a significant increase in market share, job growth and customer satisfaction. Established in 1998, Bridgewater Interiors, LLC is a joint venture between Detroit-based Epsilon Technologies, LLC and Johnson Controls, Inc. that provides quality manufacturing and assembly of complete automotive seating systems, overhead systems, and center consoles. Equipped with the most progressive technologies, equipment, and highly skilled team, Bridgewater Interiors is a recognized leader in the manufacturing industry.
- Minority Construction Firm of the Year was presented to Metcon, Inc. This award is presented to a minority-owned firm that has achieved outstanding success in private or public sector construction projects and has exhibited revenue and job growth over a sustained period of time. Founded in 1999, Metcon is a Native American-owned business that provides full service commercial general contracting throughout North and South Carolina. With over 650 successful project completions, Metcon has experienced tremendous revenue growth over the past four years and has nearly doubled their number of employees within the past two years.
- Minority Construction Firm of the Year was presented to Cherokee CRC, LLC. This award is presented to a minority-owned firm that has achieved outstanding success in private or public sector construction projects and has exhibited revenue and job growth over a sustained period of time. Cherokee CRC started as an environmental company and has evolved to provide professional and construction management services. Their strategic approach of identifying needs and opportunities, and systematically acquiring resources to meet these needs has grown the firm into a multi-million dollar enterprise.
- Minority Exporter of the Year was presented to Instant Data Technologies (Indatatech). This award is presented to the minority-owned company that has achieved outstanding success in penetrating domestic and global markets. Founded in 2000, Indatatech is a supply chain management and consulting company serving clients across the United States and in 11 countries. The company has grown its revenues by 200 percent in the past two years, creating American jobs and producing sub-contracting opportunities for other small businesses.
- Minority Manufacturer of the Year was presented to Reliance Wire & Cable, LLC. This award is presented to a minority-owned firm that has achieved significant success in employing new and innovative techniques that led to a significant increase in market share, job growth and customer satisfaction. Reliance Wire is a one-stop sourcing solution recognized as one of the leading manufacturers of tubing and cables for the automotive, appliance, and electronics industries. With the most advanced manufacturing technologies, rigorous quality control and strategically located facilities, Reliance Wire’s innovations have put their clients ahead of the marketplace.
For more information on the 2013 MED Week Award winners, please visit http://medweek.mbda.gov.
About the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA)
MBDA, www.mbda.gov, is the only Federal agency dedicated to the growth and global competitiveness of U.S. minority-owned businesses. Our programs and services better equip minority-owned firms to create jobs, build scale and capacity, increase revenues and expand regionally, nationally and internationally. Services are provided through a network of MBDA Business Centers.