Supplier diversity is a topic of critical importance for PWSA, and something we prioritize every time we engage with third parties for contracting opportunities.
Investing in diverse business enterprises – known as Minority, Women, and Disadvantaged Business Enterprises or simply MWDBEs – is a no brainer. This sort of investment helps our local and regional economy by creating meaningful job opportunities, encouraging small business growth, and keeping money in our region.
There are many opportunities for contractors to partner with PWSA in the upcoming years considering the historic investments we’re making to transform Pittsburgh’s water system. To build those relationships and highlight how MWDBE vendors and other regional businesses can participate, we recently held a Contracting Forum in partnership with the African American Chamber of Commerce of Western PA.
The Forum, attended by about 60 business leaders, highlighted upcoming contracting opportunities for critical water and sewer infrastructure projects. We also hosted a panel discussion with select contractors, who shared potential teaming opportunities and how diverse business enterprises can be prepared to bid on future work.
We remain committed to meeting our supplier diversity program goal of awarding 10% – 25% of all contracts to MWDBE businesses. In 2021, the total amount allocated to MWDBE businesses on board-approved contracts was more than $31 million, or 18% of total contract spending. This represents 76 MWDBE vendors with a total economic output of more than $53 million. More information on our performance is found in our Supplier Diversity Annual Report.
If you’re a diverse business interested in contracting with PWSA, please visit our Bids & Opportunities webpage. Vendors are also invited to schedule an appointment during supplier diversity virtual office hours to discuss any questions around doing business with PWSA or our supplier diversity program.