A virtual symposium and trade fair was held April 28 to help diverse businesses enter, compete, and grow in the trillion-dollar communications or tech sectors. Event participants were presented with information, resources, best practices, support, partnerships and business opportunities that encourage adoption of new technology.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Advisory Committee on Diversity and Digital Empowerment (ACDDE), ACDDE member Internet Association, and the FCC's Media Bureau co-sponsored the event.
USPAACC National President & CEO Susan Au Allen gave the welcome remarks as Co-Lead of the event. Allen and her Co-Lead S. Jenell Trigg, Member, Lerman Senter PLLC and representing the Wireless Internet Service Providers Association, brought the program together.
"The telecommunications industry, with an estimated market size of $1.7 trillion, offers countless opportunities for procurement, employment, and talent development for this community," Allen said. "There is no shortage of talent and brainpower in the diverse business community. It is simply is a matter of keeping the door open for them."
"Susan Allen played a critical role in pulling together the agenda for this event," wrote Heather Gate, Director, Digital Inclusion Connected Nation and Vice-Chair, ACDDE. "She is a giant in these matters."
The Symposium brought together the country's major players in the telecommunications industry: AT&T, Charter Communications, Comcast, T-Mobile USA, and Verizon.
Digital payments company PayPal, Disabled Veteran-Owned Intelligent Waves LLC, government bureau Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) of the U.S. Department of Commerce, Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning & Economic Development, Government of the District of Columbia, and associations such as the National Association of Broadcasters Leadership Foundation, Wireless Infrastructure Association, Hispanic Heritage Foundation, the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development, and the Northern Virginia Technology Council also participated in the Symposium.
The event was designed for diverse communications businesses (DCBs), including those focused on legacy communications industries (e.g., radio, television, telecommunications, cable, and satellite), and those engaged in technology-oriented industries seeking business opportunities as vendors, suppliers, or partners with tech and communications companies or government agencies.
DCBs include small businesses, minority- and ethnic-owned, women-owned, Veteran-owned, LGBTQ-owned, and disabled-owned businesses.
The Symposium presented two substantive panels. The first panel featured a discussion with representatives from federal, state, and local government agencies and a federal contractor on financing and procurement opportunities and trends.
The second panel showcased representatives from the private sector who discussed procurement opportunities and diversity requirements and standards, as well as Tier II efforts and opportunities.
The final component of the program was a Virtual Fair, which provided one-on-one confidential consultations where small and diverse communications business owners received individualized advice on supplier and vendor strategies and opportunities.
Founded in 1984 in the nation’s Capital, the US Pan Asian American Chamber of Commerce Education Foundation (USPAACC) is the most established and effective national nonprofit nonpartisan organization representing all Asian American and Asian American-related groups in business, sciences, the arts, sports, education, public and community services. Our mission is to promote and propel economic growth and job creation by opening doors to business and professional opportunities for Asian Americans and their partners in corporations, government at the federal, state and local levels, and the small, minority and diverse business communities. For 35 years, USPAACC has served and will continue to serve as the unified voice for equal opportunity in business for Asian Americans, as the gateway to corporate and government contracts, to Asian American suppliers, and information about Asian Americans and the Asia-Pacific and Indian Subcontinent markets.
Our signature annual thought-leadership programs include: College Hallmark Scholarship Program that began in 1989, One-on-One Prescheduled Business Matchmaking Meetings in 1998, Supplier Diversity & Procurement Leadership Caucus in 2004, Federal Contracting Town Hall Meetings in 2005, Fast 100 Asian American Businesses in 2008, Business Executive Coaching: ReadySetGrow in 2011, Chief Procurement Officers Forum in 2011, What’s Your Pitch Innovation Competitions in 2015, Chief Technology & Information Officers Forum in 2017, and Corporate Employee Business Resource Group Leadership Caucus in 2017.
Headquartered in Washington DC, USPAACC reaches Asian American businesses nationwide through regional chapters in California, Texas, New York, Georgia, Illinois and the Washington DC-Maryland-Virginia National Capital Area.
Businesses can be nominated or apply for the innovative national award program that recognizes the robust growth of 100 leading Asian American-owned businesses“We celebrate the fastest-growing difference makers, risk takers, and boundary breakers powering America’s economy,” says USPAACC National President and CEO Susan Au Allen
SD Champions provides tools to nurture corporate, government, and large nonprofit supplier diversity programs, while also encouraging and supporting the certification and development of the small and diverse businesses that make these programs a reality.
The SD Champions program advanced by USPAACC represents a purposeful shift away from awards solely based on a corporation's ability to spend and moves toward a new emphasis that encourages transparency, innovation, inclusion, impact on the community, and integration in supplier diversity programs.