Supplier Diversity Program

NEW! Virtual Office Hours

Our Supplier Diversity team is now offering biweekly virtual office hours. Schedule a time to talk with Emily about our Supplier Diversity Program and get your questions answered! Office Hours are open to all vendors.

Schedule your time by clicking here!

PWSA's Supplier Diversity Program (SDP) ensures that minority, women, veteran, and service disabled veteran businesses can participate in contracting opportunities. We believe that by providing contracting opportunities for a diversity of businesses, contractors, and sub-contractors help to bolster the economic vitality of our local business community and the Pittsburgh region. 

We updated our SDP Policy in September 2019. The new goal is to award 10-25% of all contracts to minority, women, veteran, service disabled, disabled, LGBT, and small business owners. We make every effort to meet this goal and encourage contractors to partner with a diversity of businesses when seeking subcontractors.

See How We're Doing

Review our 2021 Supplier Diversity Annual Report to see how we’re meeting our commitment to contracting with diverse vendors while driving economic investment that benefits our local and regional economy.    

The new policy also introduces Good Faith Waivers. If a firm submitting a proposal cannot meet the PWSA goal, a Good Faith Waiver must be submitted with the proposal package. A good faith effort shall include one or more of the following:

  1. Documentation of direct contact with disadvantaged firms
  2. Advertisements to disadvantaged firms through focused media
  3. Solicitations of community organizations that provide assistance to disadvantaged firms
  4. Written feedback to any firm that was solicited but whose bid was rejected
  5. Providing assistance to MWDBE firms to obtain any items necessary to satisfactorily complete the contract such as insurance, bonds, materials, equipment or other project related components.
  6. A narrative explanation as to why the contract does not have any subcontracting opportunities
  7. Other documentation that effectively demonstrates outreach to MWDBE firms

Our MWDBE resource list of supporting organizations can be helpful to meet the minimum participation goals.

Working with PWSA as an MWDBE Firm


PWSA is not a certifying agency and therefore accepts most certifications from other agencies. We maintain a list of certifying agencies and supporting organizations. If you do not see an agency listed, please reach out to our Senior Manager, Performance to confirm acceptance of certification. 

Pre-Bid Meetings

We hold mandatory pre-bid meetings for most solicitations. This is a great opportunity to network with other firms that may want to submit a proposal. Sign-in sheets are available at request for each pre-bid meeting. 

Outreach Events

We promote our upcoming solicitations at events throughout the year. Keep an eye on our events calendar to meet with us in person. 

For more information contact:

Emily Pontarelli, Senior Manager, Performance


T: 412.255.8800 ext. 6440