DETROIT, Dec. 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — The Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council (MMSDC) hosted its annual Ambassadors Championing Excellence (ACE) Awards ceremony in recognition of Michigan corporations, suppliers and executives who are delivering on their promises to support minority-owned and operated businesses in Michigan. The event was hosted virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“At the MMSDC, we promote minority entrepreneurship and minority employment, which are the most important elements in leveling the economic playing field for minorities in Michigan and throughout America,” said Michelle Sourie Robinson, President and CEO at the MMSDC. “Our 2020 ACE Awards honorees have shown a commitment to supporting minority business, which drives an inclusive economy.”

Corporations of the Year
Corporation of the Year honorees in 2020 are Adient and Yanfeng (both in the Manufacturing/Automotive category); Barton Malow (Construction); Ford Motor Co. (Automotive OEM); Kelly (Professional Services and Staffing); DTE Energy Company (Petrochemical and Energy); and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan (Financial and Insurance Services).

These companies were selected by MMSDC for actively including certified minority suppliers in procurement opportunities, helping in the development of minority suppliers, and promoting supplier diversity and business development within their corporation, vendors and organizations.

Supplier honors
Other key honors went to Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) suppliers that have contributed to the success of MMSDC’s corporate members. Suppliers were nominated in one of four award categories, based on their 2019 annual gross sales.

Suppliers of the Year chosen for 2020 were:

  • Jim Roberts Enterprises LLC, a Saint Joseph-based consulting firm (Class I)
  • Saanvi Technologies, a Farmington Hills-based technology firm (Class II)
  • W3r Consulting, an analytics firm in Southfield (Class III)
  • Seel, LLC, an energy services firm in Detroit (Class IV)

Robinson said it’s imperative for corporations to increase supplier diversity, which can benefit them financially while also positively impacting minority communities and the population at large.

“Clearly, minorities are becoming a larger percentage of our population, and a larger economic force in our country. By supporting minority suppliers, businesses have a direct impact with those consumers who buy and are brand-loyal to their products and services,” Robinson said. “We encourage all businesses to support minority populations by empowering them economically.”

Individual honorees
Several individual honors were also announced at the event, included:

  • Leon C. Richardson (Chemico Group) was chosen as this year’s Minority Business Enterprise Luminary, for conducting business with other minority business entrepreneurs, and providing mentoring, apprenticeships and internships while being actively involved in the community.
  • Angela D. Henderson (Ford Motor Company) was named Advocate of the Year
  • Charles Asberry (DTE Energy) was chosen as Buyer of the Year
  • Anthony Tomczak (DTE Energy) and James G. Bos (Yanfeng) were named Executives of the Year
  • Jacquelyn Jackson was selected as Volunteer of the Year

All corporations, individuals and minority business owners vying for the ACE Awards were nominated by corporate members and Minority Business Enterprises of the MMSDC. Applications were reviewed by an independent team of judges from across the state, and MMSDC’s national network.

About Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council  
The Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council (MMSDC) is a non-profit, 501(c)3 organization committed to driving economic growth within minority communities. The MMSDC advances this mission by facilitating over $36 billion annually in economic output between corporations and certified minority business enterprises (MBEs). Founded in 1977, the MMSDC certifies minority businesses, develops their capacity and facilitates inclusive procurement opportunities. The MMSDC is one of 23 affiliates of the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC), a nonprofit corporate membership organization that advances business opportunities for its certified Asian, Black, Hispanic, and Native American business enterprises and connects them to its corporate members. One of the country’s leading corporate membership organizations, NMSDC was founded in 1972 to provide increased procurement and business opportunities for minority business enterprises.

SOURCE Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council

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