The FCC‘s Office of Communications Business Opportunities (“OCBO”) hosted a Supplier Diversity Conference and Workshop focusing on private sector business opportunities for small, minority and women-owned businesses. This important event was held at FCC Headquarters, 445 12th Street, Washington, DC on Wednesday, July 30, 2014 from 10:30 am until 4:30 pm in the Commission Meeting Room.

Representatives from private industry, specifically telecommunications and technology firms from across the country discussed their organizations’ contracting procedures and provided insight on how small businesses should navigate the procurement process generally.

The panel discussion took place from 10:30 am to 12:00 pm. The panel consisted of supplier executives and diversity officers from Verizon, Sprint, AT&T, Comcast, and Microsoft. The panelists talked about their companies’ contracting needs and how small businesses can distinguish themselves in the race for lucrative opportunities. Thomas Reed, Director, OCBO, and Ronald Johnson, President of Solutions4Change, and a member of the FCC’s Advisory Committee on Diversity in the Digital Age, moderated.

In the afternoon, from 1:30 to 4:30 pm, OCBO coordinated one-on-one sessions between our panelists and small business owners who wished to participate. In these confidential meetings, small business owners got individualized advice on supplier strategies and information on current contracting opportunities.