UW News

November 7, 2018

UW recognized for 27-year partnership with Northwest Mountain Minority Supplier Development Council

When it comes to supporting and promoting the growth of minority businesses, the University of Washington has a long track record – 27 years to be exact. This milestone represents the UW’s long-standing relationship with the Northwest Mountain Minority Supplier Development Council (MSDC).

The Northwest Mountain MSDC is a Washington state nonprofit established in 1978 to aid in the growth and development of minority business enterprises (MBE’s). They provide MBE certification, MBE development, corporate services and an executive scholarship to support supplier diversity. At the Northwest Mountain MSDC 40th Anniversary Breakfast on October 10, the UW was presented with an award to recognize their 27-year involvement with the council.

“We couldn’t be more proud to partner with the Northwest Mountain MSDC to facilitate the growth and development of minority-owned businesses,” said Barbara Wingerson, associate vice president for UW Finance & Administration.

The UW partners with Northwest Mountain MSDC through the Business Diversity Program and the Foster School of Business Consulting and Business Development Center. The Business Diversity Program (BDP) supports the University’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion by encouraging the UW community to consider small, local and diverse businesses when sourcing and purchasing goods and services. Working collaboratively with Procurement Services and Capital Planning & Development, BDP connects buyers with diverse suppliers, and provides guidance and networking opportunities for companies who want to do business with the UW.

For more than 20 years, the Consulting and Business Development Center has accelerated student careers while growing businesses owned by people of color, women and others in under-served communities. Ten years ago the Center partnered with the Northwest Mountain MSDC to launch the Minority Business Executive Program as the first program west of the Mississippi River to focus on growing minority-owned businesses to be strategic partners in corporate supply chains.

“Businesses grow when they have access to contracting opportunities and access to management education that can support their growth. The Northwest Mountain MSDC understands that by combining their ability to connect minority-owned businesses with government and corporate contracting opportunities and our ability to improve the leadership and management of minority entrepreneurs we are able to build wealth in communities of color and create jobs where they’re needed the most,” said Michael Verchot, director of the Consulting and Business Development Center.