As USPAACC completed a 3-day flagship CelebrASIAN Business + Procurement Conference, Agility and Adaptability were the key takeaways for the small, minority, and diverse business community.
Now on its 36th year, USPAACC assembled 66 speakers from Fortune 1000 Corporations, Federal Agencies, Chamber Leadership Alliance Presidents, CEOs, and Founders, and Pan Asian American suppliers and entrepreneurs over 25 sessions for the CelebrASIAN Conference. More than 800 participants tuned in on the virtual platform, held June 8 – 10.
The third day of the conference built upon the substantive business development forums and discussions of the previous two days, also focused on opportunities in the supply chain, latest best practices, strategies, and the big picture on procurement.
Congresswoman Young Kim (R-CA) started off the day with encouraging remarks on how minority communities supported each other during the pandemic. Subash Iyer, Chief Counsel, Federal Transit Administration of U.S. Department of Transportation, shared his insights on how jobs are the centerpiece in the re-opening of the economy especially through increased infrastructure funding. Edith McCloud, MBDA, U.S. Dept of Commerce applauded USPAACC’s work and effort and shared her agency’s mission in expanded help for the minority business community.
At the second round of the popular CPO Forum Rachel Kutz, VP, Global Connections Supply Chain Strategic Initiatives, AT&T said, “Organizations are being intentional in their approach and MBEs should show up well.” She encouraged minority businesses to know their financial capabilities, learn how to respond to RFPs, and ask for help when necessary. “We are here to mentor,” Kutz added. Talking about the evolution of the supply chain and current trends in procurement, Shahid Javed, CPO, TIAA, said, “Don’t be a generalist, be a specialist. MBEs should be demanding.” Wassel Lewis, CPO, Aflac, emphasized risk management as a prerequisite.
Jalayana Bolden, Director, AT&T, shared key tips for prospective suppliers to major corporations: “Get certified and register with organizations like USPAACC and build a portfolio. Sell us the solutions, not just your products. Share ideas on how to save money and increase efficiency. Help us help you get into our supply chain.”
Clayton Judge III, Global D&I Lead, Nike, shared the corporation’s plans to increase participation from diverse communities: “We are starting a mentorship and internship diversity program called the Nike Academy. We focus on connection, innovation, competition, and impact for our Diversity and Inclusion initiatives.”
Gigi Dixon, Executive VP & Head of External Engagements, Wells Fargo and USPAACC National President & CEO Susan Au Allen closed the virtual conference in a candid conversation about how far the two organizations’ collaborative work has come. “It is not a conclusion but an intermission, and we will continue our series of innovative D&I programs. We will keep expanding our efforts for small and minority businesses with the help of corporations and the Biden government,” Allen said. “We thank our sponsors, speakers, and participants for helping to make CelebrASIAN conference a big success.”
ABOUT USPAACC: Founded in 1984, the US Pan Asian American Chamber of Commerce Education Foundation (USPAACC) promotes, nurtures, and propels economic growth, innovation, and job creation by opening doors to procurement, educational and professional opportunities for Pan Asian Americans and their business partners in corporate America, the federal, state and local governments, and the small and minority business communities in the United States, Asia-Pacific, and the Indian Subcontinent regions. National office in the Nation’s Capital | Regional Chapters: CA, TX, GA, NY, IL, DC-MD-VA.
The state of Supplier Diversity and Procurement took center stage on the second day of the virtual CelebrASIAN Business + Procurement Conference, held June 9. The deep-dive discussions from Fortune 500 subject-matter experts and practitioners were held to benefit minority businesses who want to be part of the billion-dollar supply chain of these major corporations.
USPAACC, the most established and experienced national non-profit Asian American chamber of commerce has announced its annual signature CelebrASIAN Business + Procurement Conference with an emphasis on creating an equal opportunity platform for minority and diverse businesses through allyship and inclusion.
A virtual symposium and trade fair was held on April 28 to help diverse businesses enter, compete, and grow in the trillion-dollar communications or tech sectors. The Symposium brought together the country's major players in the telecommunications industry: AT&T, Charter Communications, Comcast, T-Mobile USA, and Verizon.