At the March 13, 2009 meeting of the (http://www.uky.edu University of Kentucky) Equal Opportunity Panel, presentation was given by Reagan Streetman, Supplier Manager and Contracting Officer for UK Dept of Purchasing, in which she descibed the official "Supplier Diversity Program" of UK. Streetman indicated that disadvantaged business enterprises (DBE), which are companies or firms owned at least 51% by women and/or minorities (or non-profit work centers for the blind and/or disabled), are preferred suppliers for UK. It is the official UK Purchasing policy to support DBE suppliers, encourage non-Purchasing departments to also use DBE suppliers, and to generally "foster and promote minority and women owned businesses."
Besides a vague 'preference' for DBE suppliers, several actual steps are taken or being considered, at students and/or taxpayer expense in order to achieve these objectives. Many male or white owned suppliers would greatly appreciate these opportunities but UK has reserved them especially for DBE.
Steps being taken by UK:
- one-on-one meetings with DBE and Purchasing
- referring DBE to other agencies/Depts as well
- host annual Supplier Diversity Fairs to assist DBE with showcasing their goods and services to Purchasing
- sponsor seminars and workshops to teach DBE how to compete for contracting opportunities
- maintain a database of designated DBE vendors
UK Purchasing Division:859/257-9100 or http://www.uky.edu/Purchasing
(preceding article based on .ppt handouts from the public meeting indicated)