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APRIL 2013






THIS CALENDAR INCLUDES EVENTS HOSTED BY WBENC'S REGIONAL PARTNER ORGANIZATIONS AND STRATEGIC PARTNERS. VISIT WBENC'S ONLINE CALENDAR FOR MORE EVENTS. ORV-WBC Catch the Wave Regional Conference April 22-23, 2013 Embassy Suites Charleston, W. Va. Click here for details. WBDC-Chicago Going Global – International Trade Resources April 23, 2013 WBDC Chicago, Ill. Click here for details. Astra WBA Women Entrepreneurs Global Connect Expo & Summit 2013 April 24-27, 2013 World Trade Center Portland, Ore. Click here for details. 23rd Annual Government Procurement Conference (OSBDU) April 25, 2013 Walter E. Washington Convention Center Washington, District of Columbia Click here for details. WBEC-PA-DE-sNJ WBE Program / MatchMaker Meetings April 26, 2013 Omni William Penn Hotel Pittsburgh, Pa. Click here for details. NAWBO 27th Annual Leadership & Legacy Awards Luncheon April 26, 2013 JW Marriott at L.A. LIVE Los Angeles, Calif. Click here for details. ISM 98th Annual International Supply Management Conference & Educational Exhibit April 28, 2013 Gaylord Texan Resort & Convention Center Grapevine, Texas Click here for details. Count Me In Women Veteran Entrepreneur Corps April 29, 2013 Capital One Conference Center McLean, Va. Click here for details.

WPO 16th Annual Conference May 1-3, 2013 Fairmont Dallas Hotel Dallas, Texas Click here for details.


GWBC Sonoco/JBE/MYCA Supplier Diversity Development Business Conference May 7-8, 2013 Southeastern Institute of Manufacturing and Technology Florence, S.C. Click here for details


The Federal Reserve Board 2013 Vendor Outreach Fair May 8, 2013 Grand Hyatt Washington Washington, District of Columbia Click here for details. WBEA 2013 Annual Conference May 15-16, 2013 Reliant Center Houston, Texas Click here for details. GWBC Top Corporations Awards May 15, 2013 Twelve Hotel Atlanta, Ga. Click here for details. WBEC-Great Lakes Corporate Connections May 16, 2013 Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago Detroit, Mich. Click here for details. WBDC-MN and MMSDC Joint Procurement Meeting Hosted by Best Buy May 15, 2013 Best Buy Corporate Campus Richfield, Minn. Click here for details.

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Pat Birmingham

Allison Gibson


PHOTOGRAPHY Linda Johnson Visionista


Paige Adams Senior Director, Development & Corporate Relations Kim Jones Manager, Corporate Member Services Brenda Loube Principal/Founder of Corporate Fitness Works Jean Poling Contributing Writer Pamela Prince-Eason President & CEO Lynthia Romney RomneyCom, LLC Candace Waterman Chief of Staff LaKesha White Senior Compliance Manager






FEATURES Summit & Salute - Highlights


Top Corporation: WBENC Summit & Salute Features Conversations With America’s Top Corporations For Women’s Business Enterprises


Ernst & Young Global Chairman and CEO James S. Turley Receives Crystal Leadership Award


Corporate Panel Offers Insights To WBE Success


Government Spotlight: Federal Reserve Board Vendor Outreach Fair & 2013 Office of Small Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU) Procurement Conference


CERTIFICATION WBE Success Stories: Focus on the Forum - Cathi Coan, President & CEO, Techway Services, Inc. Compusave Strategic Alliance Receives 2012 Boeing Performance Excellence Award

JUNE 25-27, 2013


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OPPORTUNITIES Call For Auction Items For 2013 National Conference: Get Recognized


RECOGNITION Host Committee Spotlight: Lili Hall, President & CEO, KNOCK, inc. Traci O’Bryan, President & CEO, Arcturis Jennifer Smith, CEO, Innovative Office Solutions

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WBENC Encourages Certified WBEs To Participate In The Second Annual MLB Diversity Business Summit! WBDC-Chicago Launches National Technology Makeover Competition Win Over $40,000 In Technology And Business Services!

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Vacuum Systems International Receives International Business Award


2013 Enterprising Women of The Year Award


RESOURCES Get Healthy Before You Lose Weight





MESSAGE WOW! We had an amazing Summit & Salute in Baltimore, MD on March 13 & 14. Our celebration last month of the 14 Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE) Stars was a great way to recognize National Women’s History Month and provided examples of women business leaders whose determination, commitment and leadership is worthy of the same recognition as that of previous leading Women in History. Congratulations to our 2013 WBE Stars! This issue of the President’s Report shares highlights of Summit & Salute activities which includes celebrating our 14 WBE Stars, and: • Recognizing WBENC’s 32 America’s Top Corporations for Women’s Business Enterprises, • Providing tremendous networking and matchmaking opportunities, and • Offering impactful educational and skill building workshops. I hope you enjoy the highlights both herein and at If you missed the event, I hope you participate in future Summit & Salutes and National Conference and Business Fairs. It is now April, another important month focused on celebration and recognition. Celebrating Diversity Month began 10 years ago with the purpose of recognizing and honoring the diversity surrounding all of us. This recognition of the value of diversity is fundamental to the business case for supporting supplier diversity. WBENC Corporate and Government members certainly understand and recognize the business imperative for diversity with some of the best examples coming from our list of America’s Top Corporations for doing business with Women’s Business Enterprises who shared best practices in panel sessions at last month’s Summit & Salute. Recognizing the value of diversity and inclusion, WBENC Corporate and Government members work to advance the success of women’s business enterprises by eliminating barriers to business success and providing insights and resources that build capacity and expand opportunities available to WBEs. WBENC members know that inclusion of diverse businesses allows them to continue to deliver innovative products and services which will meet many business needs in both the public and private sector. As part of WBENC’s activities during Celebrating Diversity Month, we are reviewing our offerings to ensure that every part of our CORE platform: • Certification • Opportunities • Resources • Engagement & Recognition

APRIL IS “CELEBRATING DIVERSITY” MONTH continues to support our members’ business cases. Our Board and committees have provided valuable input through the Roadmap for Growth & Sustainability, WBENC’s strategic plan for the future. Now we are progressing by ensuring strong business cases and research portfolios tailored to industry exist to support and strengthen all aspects of our members’ supplier diversity programs. We know that leading Corporations and Government entities desire to access our certified women’s business enterprises for several reasons: •W  BENC certification ensures that the “business” they intend to do business with is in fact the “type of business” they are trying to do business with. (WBE, WOSB, etc.) •G  overnment procurement is focused on the impact small business has on local economies as well as achieving Federal Mandates regarding % of spend goals for each federal department. WBENCLink is an easily accessible source to identify WBEs, and WBEs found in WBENCLink are interested in achieving scale, increasing capacity and growing. •G  overnment Contractors have contract compliance requirements. •S  ome companies incorporate supplier diversity as a social responsibility or community outreach approach. •B  UT the MOST COMPELLING reason identified through our Top Corporations for Women’s Business Enterprises is understanding the BUYING POWER OF WOMEN as it relates to the goods and services they provide to the market. Additionally, they understand the “extreme loyalty” of female consumers who buy from entities that do business with women business owners. Think about your business case for diversity and join WBENC this month as we understand and celebrate the various business cases for supplier diversity. We will be sharing more insights on this topic within future issues of the President’s Report, at the National Conference & Business Fair taking place in Minneapolis, June 25 – 27, and in many events occurring this year at our 14 Regional Partner Organizations.

Best, Pamela Prince-Eason WBENC President & CEO



SUMMIT & SALUTE - HIGHLIGHTS WBENC 2013 Summit and Salute features and activities interest all constituency levels who JOIN FORCES, SUCCEED TOGETHER moving ahead on the ROAD TO GROWTH AND SUSTAINABILITY.


Women’s Business Enterprise Stars are successful entrepreneurs, all Certified Women’s Business Enterprises (WBEs), are leaders in their local business communities and respective fields and an inspiration to women business owners across the country. Click here to view the video highlighting these amazing women. WBE STARS, SEATED LEFT TO RIGHT: Theresa Ghafari, President & CEO, G-Tech Services, Inc.; Cristina Didone, President, CD Language Solutions, Inc.; Mary Singer, President, CRG Sustainable Solutions & Commercial Reality Group; Bev Gray, President & CEO, Exhibit Edge Inc.; Jaime Fletcher, CEO, Mach 1 Global Services, Inc.; Heather Sanderson, President, Overture Premiums & Promotions, LLC; Diana Clemente, President, Big Apple Car, Inc.; Joyce Landry, CEO, Landry & Kling, Inc.; Keeli Jernigan, President & CEO, Trans-Expedite, Inc.; Traci Williams, President & CEO, Cresent Construction Services, LLC. WBE STARS AND RPOS, STANDING LEFT TO RIGHT: Arlene Inch, Chairwoman, Transpak, Inc.; Geraldine Walker, President, Walker Transfer, Inc.; Rea Waldon, Executive Director, ORV-WBC; Blanca Robinson, President, WBEC-South; Sandra Eberhard, Executive Director, WPEO-DC; Marsha Firestone, President & Founder, WPEO-NY; Nancy Allen, President & CEO, WBDC Florida; Debbie Hurst, President, WBC Southwest; Roz Lewis, President & CEO, GWBC; Michelle Rittscher, President & CEO, CWE; George Ehrgott, Manager, Strategic Sourcing & Supplier Diversity, CTDI; Cindy Towers, CEO, Jurisolutions, Inc.; Judith Malloy, Founder, Polaris Direct. WWW.WBENC.ORG » APRIL EDITION 2013 »







Kerrie MacPherson, Partner/Principal, Ernst & Young LLP

Al Williams, Chief Procurement Office, Accenture



Pamela Prince-Eason, President & CEO, WBENC and Laura Taylor, Chair, WBENC Board of Directors and Vice President, Strategic Souring and Procurement Operations, Pitney Bowes, Inc. kicked off 2013 Summit and Salute by welcoming all attendees to the event and preparing them to be inspired.

All attendees were invited to mingle and network with Corporate and Government Members, WBENC-Certified Women Business Enterprises, dignitaries and other business owners during WBENC’s Networking Reception.

MATCHMAKER PROGRAM: MEET AND GREET Meet and Greet sessions are designed for Certified Women Business Enterprises to introduce their companies and products and/or services to participating Corporate Members. It was worth the wait. Many opportunities were offered to Certified Women Business Enterprises to engage Corporate and Government organizations: Meet and Greet Round Table meetings included 72 Corporate Members/tables and 400 Women Business Owners. One-to-one Matchmaker Meetings included 45 Corporations which invited 252 WBEs to present their value proposition.




As the Keynote Speaker, Dr. Marci Rossell engaged all as she shared experiences and insights about U.S. financial crises, patterns and projections explaining “how we got into this mess and how we get out of it.”

Present Your Position was one of five enlightening workshops during which participants learned and practiced the keys to ensure that their strategic advantage was crystal clear and actionable for the target customer when presenting their position.


COCKTAIL RECEPTION The Pre-Salute Awards Dinner Cocktail reception brought all together in formal attire offering another opportunity to network, reconvene, explore new relationships and share potential opportunities.


Raffle and Online Auction provided opportunities for bidders to depart with even more than Summit & Salute gains. And the winners are: Raffle: Andrea Pesci-Jones, President, Stylerite Label Corp - Gold Cuff Bracelet Rachel Homa, Director of Client Services, JuriSolutions, Inc. – Legacy Bracelet Online Auction: Judith Anderson Karen McClain  Jaime Bonnie Alice Burton

IBM RECOGNITION IBM was recognized for 10 years of sponsorship of the TUCK-WBENC Executive program. Michael Robinson, Denise Evans, Patrice Knight, Sherry Robison, Mary Hellum, Pamela Prince Eason, Candace Waterman

Unforgettable Golf Adventure, Scottsdale 5 Day/4Night Escape to Cancun, Mexico 7 Night Resort Vacation for Two Helmet with Deluxe Display Case Country Music Awards Package for Two Cosmopolitan Desert Oasis, Palm Springs

Power Lunches: Sherry Deutschmann, LetterLogic, Inc. Linda Toops, Clerestory Consulting, LLC Nathalie Doobin, Harvard Services Group Nathalie Doobin, Harvard Services Group Marlene Kelly, Exhibits South Patty Klein, A-Plus Meetings Company Jacquie Cleary, Atlas Data Systems Bryana Rickert, Bridger Transportation, LLC

AT&T Accenture Allstate Pfizer The Coca Cola Company The Coca Cola Company Bristol-Myers Squibb Procter & Gamble




TOP ROW, SEATED LEFT TO RIGHT: Verizon representative sitting in for Emilio Gonzalez, Vice President for Strategic Alliances, Verizon Communications, Inc.; Dan Riley, VP Property Development Operations, Target Corporation; Patricia Snyder, VP Divisional Merchandise Manager, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.; Roxana Molina, Director of The Americas Purchasing, Ford Motor Company; Pamela Berklich, SVP, Center of Excellence, Kelly Services, Inc.; Nancy Hahn, VP Americas Supply Chain, Alcatel-Lucent; Des Bell, Senior Vice President Safety & Shared Services, Chief Procurement Officer, Pacific Gas and Electric Company; Denise Naguib, VP Sustainability & Supplier Diversity, Marriott International, Inc.; Beverly Jennings, Head, Office of Supplier Diversity & Inclusion, Johnson & Johnson; and Susan O’Rourke, Director, Americas Procurement, Strategic Sourcing, Ernst & Young LLP. MIDDLE ROW, STANDING LEFT TO RIGHT: Floriza Genautis, CEO, Management Business Solutions and Chair, Top Corporations Recommendation Panel; Peter Panzarella, Chief Procurement Officer, Pitney Bowes Inc.; Kim Brown, VP of General Procurement, Dell Inc.; Ken Barrett, Global Chief Diversity Officer, General Motors Company, LLC; Rick Monical, Chief Procurement Officer PSCM – Gulf of Mexico, BP America Inc.; Al Williams, Chief Procurement Officer, Accenture; Tiffany Eubanks-Saunders, SVP Enterprise Business Services and Supplier Diversity Executive, Bank of America; Mike Hoffman, VP Global Procurement, Pfizer Inc; Nancy Creuziger, VP, Global Financial Business Performance, ManpowerGroup; Patrice Knight, VP Integrated Supply Chain, IBM Corporation; Gary Kallenbach, VP Corporate Procurement, Global Business Services, UPS; Francene Young, VP of Talent & Development for Upstream Americas and VP of Diversity & Inclusion, Shell; and Pamela Prince-Eason, President & CEO, WBENC. BACK ROW, LEFT TO RIGHT: John O’Brien, EVP, Energy Future Holdings; Terrez M. Thompson, VP Global Supplier Diversity, The Coca-Cola Company; Sig Huber, Director – Supplier Relations, Chrysler Group LLC; Robert Noel, VP, Procurement for Exxon Mobil Corporation; Ron Rodrigues, Supplier Diversity/ Local Content Manager, Chevron; Gerard Insall, SVP and Chief Information Officer, Avis Budget Group, Inc.; Michael Allison, EVP of Global Human Resources, Office Depot; William Hawthorne, SVP Diversity Strategies & Legal Affairs, Macy’s, Inc.; Marianne Strobel, Executive Director of Supplier Diversity, AT&T; Larry Caldwell, VP, IT Procurement, PepsiCo, Inc.; and Laura Taylor, Chair, WBENC Board & Vice President, Strategic Sourcing and Procurement Operations, Pitney Bowes. ABSENT FROM GROUP PHOTO: Katrina Manning, Vice President, Technical Procurement, United Airlines

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 WBENC SUMMIT & SALUTE FEATURES CONVERSATIONS WITH AMERICA’S TOP CORPORATIONS FOR WOMEN’S BUSINESS ENTERPRISES This year’s Summit & Salute offered all attendees a first: the opportunity to hear from the leaders of WBENC’s 2012 Top Corporations for Women’s Business Enterprises (WBEs) on how they have achieved world-class programs for working with women’s businesses.

Through interactive panels and individual presentations, the audience learned about the innovations, best practices and visions that set the 32 Top Corporations apart in driving women’s business development. These companies recognize the collective importance of women as consumers, as executive leaders and as suppliers. The Top Corporations demonstrate their commitment to WBE success starting at the very top in their executive suites, extending across the organization to key stakeholders, and often throughout their regional, national and global communities. Crucially, they hold themselves to rigorous metrics to ensure ongoing success. Some of the key strategies included: •C  apacity development among WBEs. Top Corporations demonstrate creativity and conviction in identifying opportunities for WBE expansion into new business lines and geographies – and ensuring that they deliver. Top Corporations provide WBEs with credentialed pathways to growth, from formal mentoring programs, to corporate learning centers, to executive education such as Tuck-WBENC Executive Program: Brought to you by IBM. •C  ollaboration in and outside the Corporation. Internal and external partnerships are the lifelines of successful programs, and the Top Corporations demonstrate how to engage stakeholders in strategic and ongoing ways. Top Corporations showcase WBE value and set the stage for business development, from advocating for WBEs among key buyers, to creating processes for feedback, to raising awareness about successful WBEs in the larger business community through events, webinars and other communications. FLORIZA GENAUTIS CEO, Management Business Solutions Chair Top Corporation Selection Committee

• Putting Teeth in Tier 2 and 3 Spend. Embedding diversity goals in prime supplier contracts is one step towards creating a more diverse supply chain. Top Corporations, including those in manufacturing and energy arenas, identify Tier 2


and 3 WBE suppliers and cultivate them to become Tier One. Then they hold themselves to higher goals, rigorously measure their success and overcome setbacks.

“Thanks to the extraordinary leadership of our Top Corporations, women’s businesses are generating strategies and solutions for meeting the fast-changing needs of today’s marketplace. Together they are driving the innovation that fuels a stronger economy and creates jobs,” said Pamela Prince-Eason, President & CEO of WBENC. The three-part series showcased these best practices: • Top Corporations Spotlight – Business Trends. This panel looked at key issues being addressed by industry to include: E  nergy: Robert Noel, VP, Procurement, Exxon Mobil Corporation IT & Telecommunications: Nancy Hahn, VP Americas Supply Chain, Alcatel-Lucent; Kim Brown, VP General Procurement, Dell Inc.; Emilio Gonzalez, VP for Strategic Alliances, Verizon Communications Inc. F  ood & Beverage: Terrez M. Thompson, VP Global Supplier Diversity, The Coca-Cola Company Pharmaceutical: Beverly Jennings, Head, Office of Supplier Diversity & Inclusion, Johnson & Johnson; Mike Hoffman, VP Global Procurement, Pfizer Inc P  rofessional Services: Al Williams, Chief Procurement Officer, Accenture; Susan O’Rourke, Director, Americas Procurement, Strategic Sourcing, Ernst & Young LLP; Nancy Creuziger, VP, Global Financial Business Performance, ManpowerGroup

•L  unch Honoring America’s Top Corporations for WBEs – Ten Years or More. These presentations showcase the leaders and corporations that have consistently raised the bar for themselves and implemented best practices in purchasing from WBEs: P  atrice Knight, VP Integrated Supply Chain, IBM Corporation Tiffany Eubanks-Saunders, SVP Enterprise Business Solutions and Supplier Diversity, Bank of America M  ichael Allison, EVP of Global Human Resources, Office Depot F  rancene Young, VP of Talent & Development for Upstream Americas and Vice President of Diversity & Inclusion, Shell Larry Caldwell, VP IT Procurement, PepsiCo, Inc. Gerald Insall, SVP and Chief Information Officer, Avis Budget Group, Inc. G  reg Tibbles, General Manager ProcurementDownstream, Technology & Services, Chevron Marianne Strobel, Executive Director of Supplier Diversity, AT&T John O’Brien, EVP, Energy Future Holdings Gary Kallenbach, VP Corporate Procurement, Global Business Services, UPS •T  op Corporations Spotlight – Supply Chain. This panel of corporations that are newer honorees offered their perspectives on innovations and WBE advancement: Rick Monical, Chief Procurement Officer PSCM – Gulf of Mexico, BP America Inc.; Sig Huber, Director – Supplier Relations, Chrysler Group LLC; Roxana Molina, Director of The Americas Purchasing, Ford Motor Company; Ken Barrett, Global Chief Diversity Officer, General Motors Company, LLC; Pamela Berklich, SVP, Center of Excellence, Kelly Services, Inc.; William Hawthorne, SVP Diversity Strategies & Legal Affairs, Macy’s, Inc.; Denise Naguib, VP Sustainability & Supplier Diversity, Marriott International, Inc.; Des Bell, Senior Vice President Safety & Shared Services, Chief Procurement Officer, Pacific Gas and Electric Company; Peter Panzarella, Chief Procurement Officer, Pitney Bowes Inc.; Dan Riley, VP Property Development Operations, Target Corporation; Katrina Manning, VP Technical Procurement, United Airlines; Patricia Snyder, VP Divisional Merchandise Manager, Walmart Stores, Inc.




 ERNST & YOUNG GLOBAL CHAIRMAN AND CEO JAMES S. TURLEY RECEIVES CRYSTAL LEADERSHIP AWARD James S. Turley, Global Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Ernst & Young, was bestowed the Crystal Leadership Award during the 2013 Salute to Women’s Business Enterprises (WBEs). The award is the highest honor given to a corporate entity by WBENC.

It recognized Turley’s leadership in influencing women’s business success through Ernst & Young’s groundbreaking programs enabling women’s business development. It honored his stewardship of Ernst & Young’s extraordinary supplier diversity program. And it acknowledged his commitment to integrity, quality and professionalism throughout the organization.

“Jim Turley demonstrates the power of principled leadership in spurring growth among women’s businesses, from emerging entrepreneurs to established suppliers,” said Pamela PrinceEason, President & CEO of WBENC. “His support of equal marketplace access and capacity development has resulted in stronger women’s businesses, and in turn, their contributions to a better economy.” The audience of over 1,200 corporate, government and WBE executives viewed a heartfelt video of Turley accepting the award, since he was out of the country on business.

KERRIE D. MACPHERSON Partner/Principal Ernst & Young LLP

Kerrie MacPherson, Principal at Ernst & Young LLP, which was a Presenting Sponsor of the Summit and Salute, joined him in thanking WBENC. She is the Executive Sponsor of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneurial Winning WomenTM Program, a national competition and executive leadership program that identifies a select group of high-potential women entrepreneurs whose businesses show potential for scalable growth and then guides them in achieving it.

In acknowledging the award, Kerrie commented, “Jim Turley’s leadership in the areas of entrepreneurship, diversity and inclusion has engaged our entire firm and unleashed a passion that energizes all of us. We are thrilled to support WBENC and are grateful for this well-deserved recognition of Jim’s outstanding commitment.”

PRESIDENT’S REPORT Ernst & Young pioneered the world-renowned Entrepreneur Of The Year® Award 27 years ago and founded its Entrepreneurial Winning WomenTM Program six years ago. Additionally, this year Ernst & Young LLP was named one of WBENC’s 2012 America’s Top Corporations for Women’s Business Enterprises, an honor it has received four times.

“Under Jim’s leadership, Ernst & Young people are encouraged to find innovative ways to help women thrive. He recognizes the tremendous economic potential of women as employees, entrepreneurs, producers and consumers, and he sets the bar very high in his efforts to help them realize that potential,” said Theresa Harrison, Director of Supplier Diversity at Ernst & Young LLP, and WBENC Board Member. Harrison is also a past recipient of WBENC’s William J. Alcorn Award for excellence in 2011. About James S. Turley: Having begun his career with Ernst & Young in 1977, James Turley became Chairman and CEO in 2001. Based in New York and London, he serves as senior advisory partner for many of Ernst & Young’s largest global clients. As Chairman, he has worked to create a high-performance work environment with a highly visible leadership commitment to “Quality in Everything We Do.”

JAMES S. TURLEY Global Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Ernst & Young LLP

He is actively engaged with many stakeholders as part of Ernst & Young’s commitment to enhancing the public’s trust in professional services firms and in the quality of financial reporting. He has encouraged dialogue with key stakeholders across the globe regarding the many changes facing the world capital markets, including the advent of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act in the United States, the introduction of International Financial Reporting Standards in more than 100 countries throughout the world, and the overall movement toward greater convergence of global auditing standards and global governance. Throughout his career, Turley has actively supported numerous civic, cultural and business organizations. He is currently Chair of the National Corporate Theatre Fund. He co-chairs the Russia Foreign Investment Advisory Council and serves on President Obama’s Export Council. He is on the Board of Directors for Catalyst, Boy Scouts of America and on the Board of Trustees for Rice University. He is also a member of the Business Roundtable and IBLAC (International Business Leaders’ Advisory Council for the Mayor of Shanghai) and was Chair of the Governing Board of the U.S. Center for Audit Quality in 2007-2011. For more information on Ernst & Young, visit




CORPORATE PANEL OFFERS INSIGHTS TO WBE SUCCESS Immediately preceding the Summit and Salute, WBENC-certified Women’s Business Enterprises (WBEs) had the opportunity to gain valuable insights from three influential leaders in supplier diversity at DuPont, Bristol-Myers Squibb and Comcast on how women’s business owners can most effectively pitch and win corporate business.

Moderated by Forum Vice-Chair Julie Copeland, President & CEO of Arbill, the panel provided candid guidance on what WBEs need to do to research their target prospects, present themselves professionally, take initiative in pursuing available paths to decision makers and participate fully as partners. The panel featured Ronald Tutundji, Small Business/ Supplier Diversity Manager, DuPont Sourcing & Logistics; Tara Spann, Associate Director, Supplier Diversity – Global Finance & Procurement, Bristol-Myers Squibb; and L. Jay Burks, Supplier Diversity Manager, Comcast. The session concluded with three women’s business owners sharing stories on how they sold successfully into some of these companies. Cassandra Sanford, CEO and co-founder of KellyMitchell Group; Julie Levi, President, Progressive Promotions; and Karen Primak, President, IPAK. Some of the advice offered by the panel: •L  ead with your strength. Target contracts with the area of the company for whom you can do the best job. Once you get your foot in the door, you can build the relationship out to other areas. •P  osition your company professionally. Ensure that your company profile is on the supplier diversity portals and your company website is as robust and sophisticated as possible. Include your WBENC certification prominently and have available your financial information in case you are asked for it upon engagement. •C  onduct outreach across industry and practice lines. Burks pointed out that WBEs should attend conferences and network in both the industries of interest, and in their practice areas, such as engineering, finance, marketing or communications. •D  o your homework. Hone your pitch to the needs of the prospect. Demonstrate that you understand the needs of the business, whether it is undergoing a merger or responding to industry trends. “Don’t give a generic pitch. We need to understand why you are different and how you address the company’s pain points,” said Spann. •M  aintain your supplier diversity contacts. Panelists advised WBEs to contact their key prospects 6-8 months prior to a major event such as the WBENC National Conference & Business Fair. Once working within a company, keep your supplier diversity and procurement contacts up to date. Tutundji suggests asking them to forward letters of recommendation to the target decision maker. •B  e alert to opportunity. Tutundji uses his time at conferences to meet as many WBEs as possible and will send them a list of 13 questions to qualify them further. Burks suggests that WBEs not only look at headquarters but also regional offices. “There may be a specific need – say janitorial services – at one location. Just be sure to keep the supplier diversity professional in the loop so they are aware of your work and can keep you in mind in the central office,” he says. At the end of the day, these executives are looking for innovative partnerships with WBEs that will create and add value to their companies.



 GOVERNMENT SPOTLIGHT FEDERAL RESERVE BOARD VENDOR OUTREACH FAIR The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System will host its annual Vendor Outreach Fair on Wednesday, May 8, 2013 at the Grand Hyatt, Washington, D.C. This event is designed to provide vendors an opportunity to collaborate with the Board’s technical and procurement representatives to market their products and services and the Board will provide comprehensive information regarding contracting opportunities. The fair features a capacity-building session entitled, “Winning Contracts with the Board,” which will share key strategies for success when participating in the Board’s acquisition process. The representatives from the Federal Reserve Banks in the following cities will be present: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Kansas City, Minneapolis, New York, Philadelphia, Richmond, San Francisco and St. Louis. If you are interested in attending, please click the logo below to register and for additional details on commodities of interest. Please click here to access more details and to register:

2013 OFFICE OF SMALL DISADVANTAGED BUSINESS UTILIZATION (OSDBU) PROCUREMENT CONFERENCE As an approved third-party certifier of the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Women Owned Small Business Federal Contracting Program and leading third-party certifier of WBEs, WBENC will participate as an exhibitor in the 23nd Annual OSDBU Procurement Conference on Thursday, April 25, 2013. The conference is dedicated to fostering procurement opportunities between the Federal Government and 8a, HUB Zone, Service Disabled Veteran Owned, Veteran Owned and Women Owned Small Businesses. More than 3,000 attendees are expected with representation from over 500 government agencies, prime contractors and small business owners; the atmosphere will exude contacts to contracts. The conference provides informational sessions such as exporting, subcontracting with prime contractors, business ethics, doing business with the federal government, mentor protégé programs available and the importance of certification. Time is running out! Please click here for more details and don’t forget to REGISTER TODAY!





Cathi Coan, President & CEO, Techway Services, Inc. Cathi Coan, President & CEO, Techway Services, Inc. is a firm believer that success is a result of cross-promotion, joining together and outreach. This philosophy of Connect, Unite, Promote, Supply (CUPs) represents the strength developed in working together.

Cathi Coan, President & CEO, Techway Services, Inc. radiates enthusiasm, wholeheartedly advocates for Women-Owned Businesses and is ready to share the good fortunes of her success with her network as was so clearly relayed at the 2013 Summit and Salute Forum Meeting:

“If we did know how powerful we are as a collective group, by joining forces we would realize how powerful we could be.” said Coan.

CATHI COAN President & CEO, Techway Services, Inc.

Coan founded Techway Services, Inc., located in Dallas, Texas, in 2004. Her company provides end-of-life (EOL) IT services for corporations, government entities, universities, channel partners and local communities. Techway is part of the Green Movement, providing a sustainable solution to address the growing e-scrap problems in the United States and utilizing various methods to resolve data and inventory concerns. Techway cares about the environment with cornerstone business objectives achieving zero landfill and low-cost solutions for their customers. Their goal is to maximize returns on their clients’ IT assets, protect their data privacy, and recover value from excess inventory with their proven revenue share and remarketing programs in an environmentally responsible way. In addition to resolving commercial concerns, Techway organizes bi-annual recycling programs in surrounding rural communities which address needs by either providing receptacles for outdated technology or by making refurbished equipment available to schools, communities or families in need. Coan is committed to the highest standards in all of her roles: as a mother of four, business owner and fellow citizen. Growing up in a small Texas town, she learned the value of integrity and building a good reputation early on. These same values are evident in her commitment to her clients, her company’s business standards and to the planet. Coan continues to experience rewards as a result of her WBENC certification, acquired in 2005, and through her involvement with Women’s Business Council Southwest (WBCS).

PRESIDENT’S REPORT “The best business decision that I ever made was joining the WBCS. I have developed good friendships and great business relationships. WBCS and WBENC have provided me with the chance to have access to procurement opportunities with corporate members and to meet other WBEs to establish relationships and potential partnerships. My company has grown because of my WBENC certification and the wonderful networking and educational programs that the WBCS provides to women business owners. Certification maximizes my connections which have won business for Techway Services, Inc. throughout the years,” said Coan. Coan seizes every opportunity engaging fellow WBENC Certified WBEs within her network by extending her success to other WBEs to create a ripple effect of “wins” beyond her own. She met HBO during a 2011 WBENC Summit and Salute Matchmaker Meeting session. The meeting provided an opportunity for Coan to present an appealing value proposition to facilitate retrieval of EOL broadcast equipment from HBO and offered a revenue share program back to HBO for equipment that is sold. A Master Services Agreement between Techway and HBO resulted from this Matchmaker Meeting exchange. In order to fulfill corresponding logistical needs, Coan realized an opportunity to increase her supply chain by identifying two fellow WBEs to deliver solutions: Argent Associates, a supply chain services company, to warehouse HBO’s EOL equipment and Trans-Expedite, Inc., a full service logistic company, to transport it. HBO, Techway Services, Inc., Argent Associates and Trans-Expedite, Inc. are all “winners.” During the subsequent WBENC Summit and Salute Matchmaker Meeting session in 2012, Coan met with a Macy’s supplier diversity executive who introduced her to one of their IT Buyers. The widespread logistics and surplus of their IT equipment created an opportunity for select suppliers to participate in an RFP to purchase and transport retired equipment for Macy’s. Coan was invited to participate and bid on six locations, all of which she won. Coan, once again, shared her win with a WBENC-certified cohort, Trans-Expedite, Inc., who handles the equipment transport. Bids with Macy’s provide ongoing opportunities for Techway. In addition to being involved with organizations and alliances that support Techway Services’ mission, Coan takes advantage of the many opportunities to participate as a leader in WBENC communities regionally as well as nationally. Coan is a WBCS Board member, has been a member of WBENC’s Women’s Business Leadership Forum since 2011 and participates on the Marketing and Program Committees. She is a 2012 TUCKWBENC Executive Education program graduate and was selected by WBCS to be a 2012 WBENC WBE Star. For more information about Techway Services, Inc. please visit: WWW.WBENC.ORG » APRIL EDITION 2013 »



WBE SUCCESS STORY: COMPUSAVE STRATEGIC ALLIANCE RECEIVES 2012 BOEING PERFORMANCE EXCELLENCE AWARD Julia Winnicki, Founder and Vice President of Sales at Compusave Strategic Alliance, first met Boeing at a regional “Meet and Greet” event in 2007, sponsored by ASTRA.

“Boeing told me that my company was too small and that I should talk to Astra about getting WBENC certified. So, at the event, I sat down with Astra, talked to them about the certification process and officially became a WBENC Certified Women Business Enterprise in 2007. Certification has influenced and quadrupled the growth of Compusave Strategic Alliance over the past five years. Boeing has been critical to our growth as a company in many ways. We cherish our relationship with Boeing’s Supplier Diversity Team. Compusave Strategic Alliance is a true beneficiary of the corporate support associated with WBENC certification. We are better for it,” said Julia Winnicki.

JULIA WINNICKI Founder and Vice President of Sales Compusave Strategic Alliance

Compusave Strategic Alliance specializes in delivering complete IT business solutions to a wide range of customers, from defense and aerospace global enterprise to government and commercial institutions. As an authorized reseller of HP, IBM, Dell, Toshiba, Cisco, VMware, Oracle, Symantec, Citrix, Microsoft, plus many others, Compusave Strategic Alliance has supported requirements across a range of Boeing programs as a Value Added Reseller (VAR) since 2009. As such, they provide a full range of services and solutions to support planning for, procuring, staging, deploying, operating and refreshing IT infrastructure and in making efficient use of the technology. Each year The Boeing Company issues the “Boeing Performance Excellence Award” to distinguish suppliers who have achieved superior performance. Compusave Strategic Alliance was a proud recipient of this year’s award which was announced on February 6, 2013.


Sandy Winston President & CEO Compusave Strategic Alliance

“Boeing wants 100% accuracy and 100% on time delivery from suppliers. To be acknowledged with The Boeing Performance Excellence Award, Compusave Strategic Alliance creates and maintains internal core processes that triple check every order and every shipment we make – throughout quoting, purchasing, configuring, testing, labeling and shipping. These processes, plus our ability to develop and maintain customer relationships are at the center of our success, both with Boeing, and with all of our other customers. The relationships we have created through the WBENC network have helped every step of the way,” said Sandy Winston, President & CEO. Boeing recognized 594 suppliers in all who achieved either a Gold or Silver level of exceptional quality and delivery performance, chosen among all of Boeing’s worldwide suppliers. This award is the Boeing’s highest recognition of supplier performance, both for quality and on time delivery.

“We are honored to be recognized in a very competitive industry, and we take great pride in the team effort that enabled us to achieve this superior performance,” said Winston. Julia and Sandy support and advocate the value of WBENC certification in many ways by being involved on both a regional level as Co-Chairs on ASTRA Leadership Forum and a national level with Julia’s participation on the WBENC Leadership Forum, for which she was nominated by Boeing in 2010.

“We would love to see increased access to buyers for contract ready firms through the WBENC network. It would allow established, experienced supply chain savvy, referable, capacity ready firms to showcase their “X Factor.” To me an “X Factor” is what differentiates a company from their competition. That difference might be innovation, creativity, performance excellence or some other a combination of unique factors that sets them apart,” said Winnicki. Their best advice for those new to the WBENC network:

“Show up! You have to show up! Just keep coming back. It’s a two to three year investment and it will pay off. Just keep working the network and giving back,” said Winston. For more information about Compusave Strategic Alliance please visit:




 CALL FOR AUCTION ITEMS FOR 2013 NATIONAL CONFERENCE: GET RECOGNIZED The Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) is pleased to announce the 2013 Auction Call for Donations. This year’s Auction is chaired by Allstate Insurance Company and PS Energy Group. The Auction will take place on Tuesday, June 25 at the Welcome Reception in the Hilton Minneapolis during the National Conference.

$150,000 GOAL You are invited to help WBENC achieve its 2013 Auction goal of $150,000 and make this very special event a success. We are seeking donations that generate excitement, unique interest and great bids. Use your imagination, but some suggestions for donations include: ARTS/ENTERTAINMENT • Theatre/movie tickets • Painting/photography • Restaurant certificates • Family fun/games

POWER MEETINGS • Breakfast, lunch or dinner with ‘C’ level executive

SPORTS RELATED • Game tickets • Skybox/suite access • Memorabilia

ELECTRONICS • Computers/tablets • Cameras • iPods/iPads

TRAVEL • Hotel/timeshare getaways • Airline/transportation tickets

HEALTH/BEAUTY • Spa-related • Jewelry/handbags • All things ‘girly’

GIFT CARDS • Any retailer • Any denomination

SERVICES • High-end training, i.e. Six Sigma, LEED, ISO 9001 • Time management • Capacity development

> Click here to download and review instructions to submit a donation. The proceeds from the Auction support the programs of WBENC and its fourteen Regional Partner Organizations (RPOs). In addition, your donation guarantees national exposure reaching thousands of businesses and may be tax deductible. An early and generous commitment helps WBENC build excitement for the Auction, and offers another outstanding reason to attend the 2013 National Conference & Business Fair. By committing no later than Monday, June 3, your donation is guaranteed to be listed in the Auction Exhibitor Directory which will be distributed to more than 1,500 conference attendees. With your support, WBENC is confident that it can achieve or exceed its 2013 goal. Help us make this year’s Auction the best yet! Please contact Kim Jones,, for any questions about Auction participation.

MATCHMAKER ELIGIBILITY DEADLINE: MAY 15! The 2013 National Conference & Business Fair MatchMaker meetings will take place on Thursday, June 27 from 9:00am-6:00pm at the Minneapolis Convention Center. These signature sessions pair WBENC-certified WBEs with corporate or government purchasing representatives for private, face to face meetings to discuss potential business opportunities. The procurement participants are able to pre-select the suppliers with whom they want to meet from an eligible pool of WBEs who register by May 15. A supplier who wishes to be considered for a MatchMaker Meeting must be WBENC-certified and registered as a full conference attendee, exhibitor, sponsor, or sponsor’s guest by May 15. The 2013 MatchMaker Meetings are sponsored by Pacific Gas & Electric Company with program supporters TOYOTA and Arbill. Go to to get registered today!

June 25-27, 2013

Minneapolis, Mn Minneapolis Convention Center

Join us For tHe larGest national ConFerenCe For WoMen-oWneD Businesses in tHe usa! partiCipate in Gener al sessions, netWorkinG anD WorksHops! eXHiBit at tHe Business Fair BuilD anD Hone Your Business skills lever aGe eXpertise BuilD Your CapaCitY

RegisteR today

Join ForCes. suCCeeD toGetHer. Host CounCil

2013 Co-Chairs

Women’s Business Development Center - Chicago

Host CoMMittee CHair Smead Manufacturing Company

Host CoMMittee

FEaTUrED sPoNsors

ARCTURIS Creative Resources Enterforce, Inc. Fredrikson & Byron, P.A. Global Capital, Ltd. Innovative Office Solutions INTREN KNOCK, inc. Lapidus & Company, LLP National Van Lines Rose International, Inc. Tembua: The Precision Language Solution The Bureau

ContriButinG partner sponsors

A10 Clinical Solutions, Inc. Accenture ALOM Altria Group, Inc. ASAP Solutions Group, LLC Avis Budget Group, Inc. Bank of America BP America Inc. Chevron Commonwealth Capital Corp. DTE Energy Energy Future Holdings Exhibits South Corporation

Exxon Mobil Corporation General Mills Hired by Matrix, Inc. IBM Corporation ICON Information Consultants LP Imagen Kenco ManpowerGroup Microsoft Corporation MYCA PepsiCo, Inc. Pfizer Inc Pitney Bowes Inc. Private Eyes PS Energy Group, Inc. Quigley-Simpson Raytheon Company Shell Strategic Staffing Solutions Superior Workforce Solutions, Inc. Trans-Expedite Inc. TransPak Inc. WalMart|Sam’s Club WEConnect Canada WEConnect International Wells Fargo Women Presidents’ Organization Women’s Business Enterprise Council PA-DE-sNJ

leaD sponsors

Alcatel-Lucent AT&T Best Buy Cargill CSS Building Services, Inc Dakkota Integrated Systems LLC General Motors Company, LLC

Ideal System Solutions, Inc. Office Depot Pacific Gas and Electric Company Robert Half International, Inc. Staples, Inc. Verizon W.W. Grainger, Inc.

proGraM sponsors

Allstate Insurance Company Arbill D.W. Morgan Company, Inc. Ideal Printers

platinuM sponsors

3M ACT-1 Group Aflac Amgen Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. Brocade Capital One Chrysler Group LLC Ernst & Young LLP Ford Motor Company Johnson & Johnson JPMorgan Chase & Co. Macy’s, Inc. Nina Hale, Inc. The Procter & Gamble Co. Time Warner Inc. TOYOTA U.S. Bank United Airlines



HOST COMMITTEE SPOTLIGHT: LILI HALL, PRESIDENT & CEO OF KNOCK, inc. Lili Hall, President & CEO of KNOCK, inc., a creative agency operating internationally on behalf of some of the most powerful brands, has what many would say is the best job in the world. She and her KNOCK team look at their clients’ products, positioning and packaging through the eyes of a shopper – and then find ways to connect them in a more compelling and actionable way.

“Our knowledge of the retail landscape and the nuances of what happens between brands and their audiences–in the street, aisle, shelf, app, cart and click–is a valuable asset to our partners” Hall says. KNOCK’s team of strategists, trend researchers, graphic and digital designers, marketers and merchandisers fuse seamlessly to create solutions for its clients. As a member of the Host Committee, Hall also produced the group’s video promoting the 2013 National Conference & Business Fair.

LILI HALL President & CEO KNOCK, inc.

For the blockbuster launch of Target’s PFresh grocery stores, KNOCK helped the retail giant – and Co-Chair of the WBENC 2013 NCBF – create awareness about its new offering of a fresh, full grocery experience. KNOCK employed a world-class photographer and created eye-popping visuals displayed inside and outside the stores. From the Metro transit trains exteriors to 3-D billboards and bus stops, images of mouth-watering produce and the bulls-eye Target logo called new “guests” to the stores. Sales soared in test markets, and Target quickly made plans to convert all stores to this lucrative format by 2013. For New Balance, KNOCK designed the first North American retail store in New York City – announcing in the storefront that “Excellence has Arrived.” Inside the shopper saw inspirational messages, fitting instructions and references to New York.

“From the entrance to the cash register, every moment was impeccably thought through,” Hall says. “Projected sales were exceeded, and the Flatiron district where the new store is housed is attracting major sport brands.”

PRESIDENT’S REPORT KNOCK also helped New Balance boost its shoe sales on the floors of other retailers by designing a new shoebox that unified the New Balance brand at retail. KNOCK reduced 100 disconnected box designs into a cohesive system of eight. Now they make a strong brand impression on the sales floor and are easy for staff to find in the stockroom. The firm also serves non-retail clients: KNOCK helped a law firm stand out from the crowd by offering an online giving platform instead of a holiday card, and attracted new clients to a 30-year old architecture firm by updating its image.

“At the heart of our work is the power of design to inspire and motivate – spending, giving and changing,” Hall says. “For each of our clients, someone is making a purchasing decision somewhere in their business – whether it is B-to-C or B-to-B.” Hall says. “We approach that project with the same lens as a retail shopper. We ask, ‘What would it take to draw that customer in, appeal to their intelligence and their senses, and make them act?’” Launched two months after 9/11, KNOCK has built a robust national and international business based on its ability to inspire new client transactions. Today, KNOCK’s mission is “to establish, craft, fine-tune, reinvent, evolve and amaze.” Before founding KNOCK, Hall spent 14 years in brand-building and business development with Adidas America, B.U.M. Equipment and other international brands. She’s a seasoned professional in brand development, growth and protection, and has been named one of Ernst & Young LLP’s Entrepreneurial Winning Women.

“We are a fluid team of entrepreneurial, and highly intuitive thinkers which means we are open to new, smart ways of doing things,” Hall says. For information on KNOCK, inc., please see




HOST COMMITTEE SPOTLIGHT: TRACI O’BRYAN, PRESIDENT & CEO, ARCTURIS Arcturis is a strategic, multi-disciplinary architecture and design firm serving corporate, education and government clients. In every one of its ambitious and varied projects, Arcturis works to help its clients achieve their business goals and serve their constituents responsibly and sustainably.

From creating environments that foster collaboration, to designing efficient, multiuse flexible spaces, to embedding technology inside and out, Arcturis creates smart spaces that help clients attract and retain employees, and enhance their brands.

“We practice relationship-based design,” says Arcturis President & CEO and Host Committee member Traci O’Bryan. “We have a highly customized approach, taking our time with each client to understand their constituents, their business goals and their culture. These are crucial factors in designing a space.” Based in St. Louis, WBENC-certified, award-winning Arcturis can claim half of the region’s Fortune 1000 companies as clients. It serves financial services, health care, higher education and government entities – including outdoor parks and trail systems. What ties these clients together is Arcturis’ thoughtful approach to serving the multiple needs of the client, while maximizing the uses and benefits of the space.

TRACI O’BRYAN President & CEO Arcturis

For a major financial services firm, Arcturis took advantage of a floor-by-floor renovation to integrate technology access throughout the building – including recreation areas, coffee bars or passageways where employees might hold impromptu meetings.

“Technology isn’t an ‘add-on’ anymore,” O’Bryan explains. “Employees can work and create ideas anywhere with access to smart boards, iPads, monitors and wireless coverage. We’ve refurbished bridge connections among buildings that were built in the 1970’s. Now they are inviting places to meet and collaborate.”

PRESIDENT’S REPORT The right workspaces can help a company get and keep top talent, and support their productivity. “A company’s space speaks volumes about its culture – and today’s emerging leaders want to be able to communicate constantly and work flexibly,” she says. Arcturis has also helped clients maximize the use of their space. Many corporations and government agencies cannot afford to take on additional real estate and in some cases are trending towards smaller square footage.

“We are seeing unassigned workspaces designed so that anyone can come in and sit down, plug in and start working,” O’Bryan adds. Sometimes Arcturis enables a client to connect with outside users – such as at the Grace Hill Water Tower Health Center which was the first new construction facility in a disadvantaged St. Louis neighborhood in 30 years. It became a beacon of hope for the community and a safe place for individuals and families to gather and learn about wellness. To convey those values, Arcturis created open-air, communal spaces. The lobby features beautiful photos of neighborhood children and the exterior is a cheerful reminder of the resources within. For this it was showcased on the Center for Health Design website as an example of a best practice facility. To meet the needs of its varied clients, Arcturis offers planning, architecture, interior design, graphic design, landscape architecture and CAFM technology services. What’s more, it provides measurement tools so that they can track and manage the ongoing use of the space and their assets.

“Sustainability is part of everything we do,” O’Bryan says. “To serve people long term, a space must make sense strategically, economically and environmentally.” And be beautiful. Its own offices were featured nationally in Interior Design Magazine. For more information on Arcturis, please see




HOST COMMITTEE SPOTLIGHT: JENNIFER SMITH, CEO, INNOVATIVE OFFICE SOLUTIONS For Jennifer Smith, the dynamic CEO of Innovative Office Solutions, the focus of her company is making people more productive – by creating more efficiently designed and stocked workplaces for her high profile corporate and government clients, and by streamlining their procurement and logistics processes.

“Imagine us as an extension of your procurement, IT, marketing and administrative staff,” she says. “We can source anything our client needs for the office – from paperclips to ergonomic desk systems. And we deliver those products and services in the most sustainable way possible, saving hundreds of man hours.“ To accomplish this, the award-winning, WBENC-certified Minnesota-based company has a national reach, offering next day delivery by shipping to 50 states every day and pulling products from 72 warehouses strategically located across North America. Customers range from banks to businesses, from Schwan’s Food Company and Buffalo Wild Wings, to the State of Minnesota. So it is no surprise that Smith is an enthusiastic member of the Host Committee for the 2014 National Conference & Business Fair in Minneapolis.

JENNIFER SMITH CEO Innovative Office Solutions

The company’s innovative and solutions-based approach also extends beyond the office – as evidenced by the many Minnesota sports teams it serves, including the Minnesota Twins and St. Paul Saints (baseball), the Minnesota Vikings (football), the Minnesota Wild (hockey) and the Minnesota Swarm (lacrosse). For the Minnesota Twins, Innovative Office Solutions not only sourced everyday office supplies to run the business, but also outfitted the new outdoor stadium with paper towels, toilet paper and janitorial needs. When, on Opening Day, the team realized that there were still a few items they needed for the outdoor stadium that they hadn’t needed indoors, Innovative Office Solutions sprang into action, producing stools for the bat boys and cleat brushes for the players’ shoes, all by noon.

PRESIDENT’S REPORT To deliver this level of service for each client, Innovative Office Solutions takes a highly consultative approach. At its most strategic, the company can help its clients envision their workplace, design their furniture and IT configuration, engineer the workflow, and deliver office and maintenance supplies on-time and to their door. Drawing upon the expertise of its specialists and sales professionals, the company starts with a productivity and sustainability audit. Then it offers strategies to streamline the client’s operations and encourage productivity – from workplace and IT to print management and procurement processes. Finally, it provides online access to over 100,000 products, calling upon its national distribution system to fulfill those orders and ensuring customer satisfaction with a dedicated service team based in Minnesota. As a result, Innovative Office Solutions has grown exponentially in its 12 years of doing business. Even during times of economic downturn, it forged proactive partnerships with its clients, investing in its service capabilities and expanding its reach.

“We believe that listening to our clients and positioning them for the future has been key to our success,” Smith says. “Our brand promise is to Expect Response to your needs, Expect Reduction in costs and unnecessary consumption, and Expect Relief to your pain points.” In the last few years alone, Innovative Office Solutions’ awards bears out the success of that strategy. It has been named one of 2012 Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal Fast 50 for the third consecutive year; one of Minnesota Business’ 100 Best Places to Work; recipient of the Dakota-Scott Workforce Investment Board Entrepreneur Award; one of the 2011 Inc 5000 Fastest Growing Privately Held Companies (four years) and one of the 50 Fastest Growing Women-Owned/led companies in North America by The Women Presidents’ Organization (WPO), in partnership with American Express OPEN.

“We provide the best of both worlds to our clients: the height of efficiency delivered in a one-to-one relationship,” Smith said. For more information on Innovative Office Solutions, please visit




WBENC ENCOURAGES CERTIFIED WBES TO PARTICIPATE IN THE SECOND ANNUAL MLB DIVERSITY BUSINESS SUMMIT! Major League Baseball and the Houston Astros will co-host the second annual MLB Diversity Business Summit, which will provide attendees with unprecedented access to human resource and procurement executives from all 30 MLB clubs, MLB Network, MLB Advanced Media, Minor League Baseball clubs and MLB’s Central Office. The MLB Diversity Business Summit will be held at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston, Texas on Wednesday, June 19th. This sports employment and business opportunity career and trade fair will provide job seekers and entrepreneurs with a unique opportunity to network directly with decision-makers for employment and business opportunities at major and minor clubs, as well as well those from MLB media entities. The agenda for the event will include a keynote speech by Baseball Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig, league-wide networking, exhibit floor access, workshops and executive roundtable discussions.

“WBENC is proud to collaborate with our corporate member, Major League Baseball, to extend this opportunity to our certified WBEs,” said Pamela Prince-Eason, President & CEO of WBENC, “this event affords multiple networking opportunities with several MLB executives in one venue.” “The 2012 Diversity Business Summit was a tremendous success, attracting a diverse pool of students, professionals, and business owners,” said Wendy Lewis, Senior Vice President of Diversity and Strategic Alliances, Major League Baseball. “It was a unique and highly engaging event and the attendees were exposed to the variety and scope of opportunities that can be found in our industry. We are pleased to bring the Summit back this year to reach even more outstanding candidates and entrepreneurs.”



 WBDC-CHICAGO LAUNCHES NATIONAL TECHNOLOGY MAKEOVER COMPETITION WIN OVER $40,000 IN TECHNOLOGY AND BUSINESS SERVICES! Is your business in need of a technology upgrade? Or maybe an entire makeover? The Women’s Business Development Center of Chicago (WBDC-Chicago) is excited to announce its 4th Annual Technology Makeover Competition, exclusively for WBENC Certified WBEs! Applications are being accepted now through May 31. Click here to view requirements, rules and to apply. The prize package includes laptops, servers and valuable online marketing services to grow your business and build your brand. The winner of the competition will be announced at the 2013 WBENC National Conference & Business Fair. Read more >


 ACUUM SYSTEMS INTERNATIONAL V RECEIVES INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS AWARD The Cuyahoga Valley Chamber of Commerce held its 4th Annual Impact awards on January 24th, 2013. Vacuum Systems International (VSI) is recognized with an award for Achievement in International Business. VSI has expanded internationally to England, China, Korea, Netherlands, Central America, Virgin Islands and Canada. The Vacuum Helpline™ program offers Call Center support, bi-lingual customer service and over 21 different brands of commercial vacuum cleaners. Diana Richards is Founder and President of VSI for almost 20 years. Congratulations to Everyone at VSI!

Patty Taksar, Client Service Coordinator, and Terry Wyne, Operations Manager of VSI, Inc., at Cuyahoga Valley Chamber of Commerce




2013 ENTERPRISING WOMEN OF THE YEAR AWARD WBENC Certified Women Business Enterprises (WBEs) have been recognized amongst “The Finest Women Entrepreneurs” in receiving the prestigious 2013 Enterprising Women of the Year Award from Enterprising Women’s Magazine.

Enterprising Women, headquartered in Cary, NC, is the nation’s only womenowned magazine published exclusively for women business owners that chronicles the growing political, economic and social influence and power of entrepreneurial women. The magazine provides a friendly meeting place and a public forum for the critical issues which confront women’s businesses and daily lives from the unique perspectives and experiences of entrepreneurial women. The annual Enterprising Women of the Year Awards, which recognize the finest women entrepreneurs in North America and beyond, is widely considered one of the most prestigious recognition programs for women business owners. Nominees are judged based upon: 1) the revenue growth of their company; 2) the leadership they have exhibited in their local communities and/or at the state, national or international levels; and 3) the ways in which they have given back to the women’s business community by mentoring or supporting other women in business. The 11th Annual Enterprising Women of the Year Awards Celebration was held April 3-4, 2013 in Fort Lauderdale, FL. The 2013 award winners and honorable mention recipients celebrated at the Enterprising Women of the Year Awards Gala Dinner the evening of April 4. They will also be profiled in the special May 2013 commemorative awards issue of Enterprising Women magazine. Enterprising Women of the Year Award Winners were recognized by class which is determined by annual sales revenue. Award winning WBENC Certified Women Owned businesses are listed below: Over $25 million in annual sales revenues: • Cidalia Luis-Akbar and Natalia Luis, M. Luis Construction Co., Inc. Baltimore, MD • Elle Kaplan, Lexion Capital Management LLC, New York, NY • Lisa Nichols, Technology Partners, Inc., Chesterfield, MO • Julie Copeland, Arbill Industries, Inc., Philadelphia, PA

PRESIDENT’S REPORT Over $10 million and up to $25 million in annual sales revenues: •M  ichelle Kerr, Oxford Consulting Group, Inc., Westerville, OH •B  onnie Hechtkopf, Kobie Marketing, St. Petersburg, FL • J eanette Hernandez-Prenger, ECCO Select, Kansas City, MO • J oanne Santomauro, ISG Office Concepts, Inc., Horsham, PA •E  leanor Morgan, MD&E Clarity, Norcross, GA •N  athalie R. Doobin, Harvard Services Group, Inc., Whippany, NJ Over $5 million and up to $10 million in annual sales revenues: •D  enise Wilson, Desert Jet, Thermal, CA •B  renda Loube, Corporate Fitness Works, St. Petersburg, FL •S  anquinetta Dover, DoverStaffing, Inc. and DoverSolutions, Inc., Atlanta, GA

Over $1 million and up to $5 million in annual sales revenues: •S  ally Webb Berry, The Special Event Company, Durham, NC •S  unny Chico, SPC Consulting, LLC, Chicago, IL •R  eshma Moorthy, Frontier Technologies, Inc., Wilmington, DE •K  imberly Martinez, Bonitas International, Newbury, OH •P  atti Winstanley, Aztec Promotional Group LP, Austin, TX • Carrie Peele, Blue Diamond Worldwide Transportation, Raleigh, NC •P  amela Robinson, Financial Voyages LLC, Atlanta, GA •V  ickie Rock, Victoria Court Reporting, Videography and Transcription Service, Inc., Chicago, IL Up to $1 million in annual sales revenues: • J oy Lynn Fields, Joy Lynn, Inc., Roswell, GA •R  omana Fantini, Pino Gelato, Hilton Head, SC Honorable Mention recipients named for the 2013 Enterprising Women of the Year Awards are listed below: •S  heila I. Drohan, Corporate Fitness Works, St. Petersburg, FL •K  athy Miller, Total Event Resources, Schaumburg, IL •K  elly Wold Smith, Futura Marketing Inc., Eden Prairie, MN •S  andra Wyman, Tidestone Solutions, Portland, ME •N  ina Eisenman, Eisenman Associates, New York, NY •L  aura Sanchez, SWATware LLC, Chicago, IL •A  my Friedman, BroadBlast, Inc., Delmar, NY Congratulations to all who have received this recognition and honor. For more information about the 2013 Enterprising Women of the Year award please visit:




GET HEALTHY BEFORE YOU LOSE WEIGHT How many of us have wished we had a body that looked like someone else’s or for one that is healthier? Have you ever thought about having a body filled with energy, feeling comfortable both inside and outside, being able to move easily and truly enjoying your mirror image? Women often struggle with their bodies and spend millions of dollars each year on diets.

GET THE FACTS! At any given time, 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men are on “a diet.” On average a woman spends 31 years of her life on a diet, according to Boston Medical Research. Approximately 45 million Americans begin a diet each year and spend about $33 billion on weight-loss products in pursuit of a trimmer, fitter body, according to Boston Medical Center.

happening at the core of our physiology and emotions in order to restore balance. Fat cells and hormones are part of a system-wide biofeedback network that orchestrates appetite, metabolism, heat regulation, digestion, and detoxification. Any chronic disturbance in the crosstalk among systems has the potential to cause weight gain (and a host of other menopausal symptoms, like hot flashes and food cravings).

CAUSES OF UNEXPLAINED WEIGHT GAIN A loss of 5-7% of your body weight provides many health benefits including risk reduction of conditions such as Type 2 Diabetes, Hypertension, Heart Disease, Stroke and Osteoarthritis, according to the Weight-control Information Network. We have heard and most experts agree that: “Diets Don’t Work”. Why, then, is it a $33 billion industry? Why has/will the average person begin at least 10 diets in their lifetime? If popular diets truly do what they say, why aren’t we all following them and successfully losing weight? Why are there so many people in our society who are overweight or obese? It important for each of us to achieve and maintain a healthy weight for our age and that is relative to the lifestyle that we live. Being overweight increases one’s risk for many unhealthy conditions, most of which are controllable through weight loss: heart attack, high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, diabetes and stroke. The risk of ill health far exceeds the pleasure of eating habits that cause one to be overweight, yet it is difficult for people to lose the excess permanently.

MENOPAUSE WEIGHT GAIN Women experiencing menopause have a strong likelihood of gaining weight which is neither often discussed nor addressed. I am excited to share solutions with you that can help you reclaim your body, feel good again, get back on track and feel healthier than ever. Menopause weight gain is a symptom of a woman’s system becoming out of balance. Each of us needs to understand what is

Each day we discover more about the intricate nature of hormones and weight; one vital link is that between insulin, metabolism and body fat. For years, many women followed the conventional lowfat, high-carbohydrate diet, with lots of processed foods (pasta, breads, most snacks, beer and wine, etc). Over time this diet can create a condition known as insulin resistance. When insulin resistant, your body converts every calorie it can into fat – even if you’re dieting. The result is that while you are gaining weight, your cells are actually starving! A second basic link lies between stress and body fat. Stress hormones, like cortisol, block weight loss. This is sometimes called the “famine effect”: despite adequate food, the body interprets prolonged stress as a famine and goes into hoarding mode – which it does very effectively. Stressors can be emotional, physical or even diet-related. Bingeing, yo-yo dieting, unaddressed food sensitivities and severe calorie restriction are all forms of stress. Most of us are under tremendous amounts of stress, often more than we realize, much of which is prolonged and unremitting, which can lead to chronic inflammation and a metabolic disorder called adrenal imbalance. These mechanisms all work together; many of us combine a high-stress life with a low-fat, high-carb diet which creates such a powerful hormonal imbalance that weight gain is inevitable. What’s more, high-carb diets cause neurotransmitter imbalances that lead to food cravings. Because the body can’t readily maintain optimal blood sugar and serotonin levels, you are compelled to have snacks and caffeine to make yourself feel better. Conversely, they exacerbate both insulin resistance and adrenal exhaustion


while adding body fat. For women in peri-menopause, another weight gain issue is widely fluctuating estrogen levels; for menopausal women, it is diminished levels of estrogen. As the estrogen production of your ovaries falls, your body turns to secondary production sites, including body fat, skin and other organs. If your body is struggling to maintain its hormonal balance, body fat becomes more valuable. Your body is often balancing estrogen loss with maintaining bone mass, for which it needs additional fat cells. Of course, if you are stressed and on a low-fat diet, your body will struggle to keep all these balls in the air – and refuse to let go of extra body fat. The toxic load may be just one part of a broader pattern of inflammation which often shows up during menopause. Dysbiosis, yeast and food sensitivities, and an immune system imbalance can short-circuit weight loss. Toxicity triggers the immune system to be on full alert, as do any unaddressed food allergies. Many women have been sensitive to certain foods for decades but only realize it after they lose estrogen’s soothing effect on the digestive tract. Unresolved emotional issues are often the root cause of unhealthy eating habits which are their own category of toxin.


complicated biological process which results in over 95% of dieters gaining back the weight they lose and more. Menopause is no reason to accept someone else’s idea of what your limitations are; in fact the opposite is true! There is no better time than now to begin building a stronger health foundation. This is the time in your life to discover the best in yourself, including your power to finally deal with the core issues that may have hindered your earlier weight loss efforts. We have learned that you have to get healthy before you can lose weight and keep it off. Once you establish baseline health, your body will naturally seek and maintain its ideal weight. The first step is to follow nutritional and lifestyle guidelines. The process to reach your own health potential starts with your desire, determination and decision to take control of your health and body. Dr. Karen Wolfe’s program referenced below suggests a sensible meal plan that helps to control blood sugar levels which control hunger and cravings. Add in a moderate dose of exercise, with a goal, over time, to walk 30 minutes every day. In addition to providing the proper nutrition, the “RESET Program” includes email support, phone and personal coaching, recipes and more.

Weight loss is not about willpower or calories in/calories out which are myths shared by the diet industry. Fad diets oversimplify a very

DR. KAREN WOLFE’S TIPS FOR RECLAIMING OR RESETTING YOUR BODY 1. Balance your blood sugar: Research studies say that low blood sugar levels are associated with LOWER overall blood flow to the brain, which means not being able to make good decisions. 2. Eliminate sugar and artificial sweeteners and your cravings will subside. 3. Determine if hidden food allergies are triggering your cravings. 4. Get 7-8 hours of sleep. Research shows that lack of sleep increases cravings. 5. Check your Vitamin D and Omega 3 levels: • Optimize your vitamin D level: When Vitamin D levels are low, the hormone that helps turn off your appetite doesn’t work and people feel hungry all the time. • Optimize Omega 3s: Low levels of Omega-3 fatty acids have also been associated with depression, Alzheimer’s disease and obesity. 6. Reduce Stress: Stress increases the hormone cortisol which can create a raging appetite. 7. Hydrate: Sometimes we think we are hungry when really, we are thirsty. Drink half your body weight (lbs.) in ounces of water!

8. Physical Activity: Move your body daily for a minimum of 30 minutes a day of walking to start. Before you even consider starting any nutrition program, the National Institute of Health recommends taking a few precautions: consider whether the diet is medically or nutritionally safe, watch out for warning signs such as an overemphasis on one food group, restriction of food choices and a lack of emphasis on caloric consumption. It is always recommended to first consult with your doctor before making dietary changes. Be your own advocate to get healthy! Resources for more information: 1. • Go to Karen’s Kitchen and watch a video and practice a recipe 2. 3. 4. WWW.WBENC.ORG » APRIL EDITION 2013 »


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WBENC April 2013 President's Report  

wbenc president's report