Message from Wendell Stemley, NAMC President
As a leading proponent for diversity and inclusion in the construction industry, the National Association of Minority Contractors (NAMC) has made advocating for continued improvements to the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) program a key legislative initiative in 2016. The organization asserts that there is still significant ground to cover to achieve full inclusion in the $400 billion per year transportation bill funded by taxpayer dollars.
The NAMC Board of Directors has made its legislative agenda available to clarify the organization’s objectives. We are committed to being on the forefront of addressing the lack of full access for minorities in the transportation industry relating to employment and contracting opportunities. While strides are being made, we are nowhere close to where we need to be.
Through the NAMC STEM Outreach Program, the association seeks to help equip minority youth with the knowledge and skills to solve tough problems, gather and evaluate evidence, and correctly comprehend results. The NAMC Construction Labor Job Readiness Boot Camp pilot program, to be held at the Westside Works Facility in Atlanta, Georgia in 2017, will prepare disadvantaged workers seeking to enter the construction industry for entry level employment.
CALL TO ACTION
As business owners and citizens, we must be involved with our local representatives, such as mayors and city council members, as well as our state and congressional representatives, to ensure that the needs of our communities are included in the appropriations to rebuild America’s infrastructure. NAMC urges you to ask government representatives how rebuilding is going to work for and benefit small business, local communities, and mandatory DBE participation requirements.
Please understand -- this is your money. Every time you go to the gas station, you help fund the transportation bill. We all pay the 18 cent federal gas tax, so all of us should have the right to equal services.
Wendell Stemley, CMAA
NAMC National President
Founded in Oakland, California in 1969 by Raymond Dones and Joseph Debro, NAMC is the oldest minority construction trade association in the United States with over 50 Hall of Fame members and Legacy Builders and an annual project capacity of over one billion dollars nationally. Through a network of local chapters, and in collaboration with strategic and corporate partnerships, NAMC assists minority and women-owned member businesses with building capacity by providing access to opportunity, advocacy, and contractor development training.
Balfour Beatty Chief Operating Officer Eric Stenman Talks About Supplier Diversity in a Letter to NAMC President Wendell Stemley
November 4, 2016. The U.S. economy continues to improve on the heels of the great recession and that’s good news for the construction industry. Supplier diversity, an important and beneficial business practice, continues to grow as the number of minority-owned organizations increase.
Today, there are more than 2 million minority-owned firms in the U.S., generating more than $205 billion in sales each year, according to the United States Census Bureau. During the past decade, minority-owned organizations have grown at twice the rate of all businesses in the U.S. Our partnership with the National Association of Minority Contractors (NAMC) and its members assists us to support minority-owned businesses in our pursuit of supplier diversity.
At Balfour Beatty, we “Build to Last” by applying lean strategies and safe practices in our work, and being an expert and trusted adviser to our clients and business partners. To this end, supplier diversity is not just a part of our business strategy – it’s a cornerstone to our future prosperity.
Nonetheless, as one of the nation’s leading and most well-respected general contracting firms, we know that achieving a high level of success year-after-year does not come by sheer luck. Our partnerships with diverse and quality suppliers in both the public and private markets allow us to advance the capacity of all our minority subcontracting partners while delivering best-in-class service to our clients. Simply put, clients don’t believe what we say. They believe how we behave and what they see. We have learned from our own efforts and can share some valuable lessons learned along the way.
While we have made significant strides in our own supplier diversity efforts, there is still work to be done. We are working on increasing our overall goals as well as leveraging our purchasing power within the markets we serve.
Driving the supplier diversity philosophy forward in our business and operational practices is a process that is constantly evolving. I believe it is a journey that will continue to move us forward, and it is very apparent that the companies who leverage supplier diversity will have the upper hand. I hope you can join us and make an effort to become industry leaders in supplier diversity. A focus on this movement has the potential to increase the innovation of an entire industry.
Balfour Beatty Construction
NAMC Board of Directors Meeting, Congressional Breakfast, and Legislative Forum - Washington, DC
The NAMC 2016 Congressional Breakfast was held on Capitol Hill on September 15, 2016 at the Rayburn House Office Building. Representatives who attended the breakfast and addressed NAMC’s issues and concerns were Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA); who spoke about the need for small business banking reform; Rep. Hank C. Johnson, Jr. (D-GA), who addressed government contracting with respect to rebuilding the infrastructure; Rep. Dave Brat (R-VA), debt ceiling and its impact on small businesses; and Rick Allen (R-GA), a former construction company owner, who acknowledged the lack of loan options for small contractors in the industry. NAMC long-time supporters Congresswoman Alma Adams (D-NC) and Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) also weighed in on the issue of minority contracting. Other congressional representatives also voiced their support for the DBE program.
On Friday, September 16, Wendell Stemley, NAMC President, was invited to host Breaking the Color Barrier in Military Contracting, a panel sponsored by Congressman Hank C. Johnson, Jr. at the Congressional Black Caucus Annual Legislative Conference in Washington, DC. The panel consisted of various government and industry representatives who assembled to provide an opportunity for minority- and women-owned small businesses to learn how to navigate the procurement process and market their businesses in the lucrative arena of defense contracts.
Small business participation options along with NAMC recommendations included better tracking of both prime and subcontractor flow down requirements for small businesses and minority participation. We also recommend that Federal agencies offer “FAST PAY” to small business contractors.
NAMC also suggested small businesses support Congresswoman Nydia Velasquez’s call for stronger compliance and oversight of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Small Business program within federal contracting and Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici’s bill, H.R. 3175, to increase the government-wide procurement goals for small disadvantaged businesses, women-owned businesses, service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses, and HUB ZONE (historically underutilized business zone) small businesses. Congressional support is needed for legislative bills.
Member Spotlight: Hilton O. Smith, Emeritus NAMC Board Member
Hilton Smith, Senior Vice President, Turner Construction (retired), became a NAMC National Board member 44 years ago. During a joint venture with NAMC founder Ray Dones, Turner Construction became one of the association's first major corporate partners. Mr. Smith was recently appointed as a NAMC Emeritus National Board Member during the 47th NAMC Annual Conference in Atlanta, Georgia, June 2016.
Working in conjunction with NAMC's National Board and Turner Construction was aninstrumental networking opportunity to circulate information about Turner’s work around the country. This encouraged Turner Construction to become a corporate sponsor with NAMC and the relationship has been mutually beneficial resulting in the establishment of partnerships, connections, valuable business opportunities, and training programs. Mr. Smith’s participation on NAMC’s national board has benefited NAMC members with opportunities to collaborate with Turner Construction and to impact changes in the construction industry while developing a plan of action to sustain NAMC’s vibrancy. A relationship involving friendship and trust has been the outcome with change as the most significant characteristic of this association. These positive changes have encouraged contractors to leverage these benefits for the success of the next generation.
Technology is also a significant factor in moving NAMC ahead. Mr. Smith’s advice to NAMC is to stay in the game and stay aware. Continue to persevere and contribute to communities across the country. Grow in faith and help one another to provide networking opportunities within the organization.
Mr. Smith’s advice to young entrepreneurs is to protect the legacy of their company by being the best at what they do while continuing to grow, establish ownership, and pursue relevant training to enhance their knowledge. Grow and develop a trusting staff while working smartly in cooperation with them to embrace the concepts of success.
Mr. Smith considers Ray Dones a pioneer in the development of NAMC and recalls Mr. Dones’ advice: “To fall is bad, but to remain down is worse. Adversity can engulf the individual but not the group. Keep moving forward.”
Member Company Spotlight: Platt Construction, Inc.
Dick Platt's lifelong dream was to play professional football. While playing for the Marine Corps, he was given an opportunity to try out for the San Diego Chargers and won an offer to play for them, but while playing for the Marine Corps, Dick was tackled and taken down from the side at the knees. The injury wasn't pretty and turned out to be the end of Dick's pro football dreams. Unable to play and badly injured, he was honorably discharged from the Marine Corps.
Arriving back home in Wisconsin, Dick was unsure of his next move, but he knew that he wanted to work for himself. While recovering, he recalled an early childhood memory of helping his father by pushing a wheelbarrow at a construction job site. Inspired by his father’s passion for the concrete trade, he took the Kenosha phone book and called everyone in the city of Kenosha, asking if they wanted their concrete replaced. Like so many American stories, his industrialism was rewarded.
In 1972, Dick was a one-man concrete operation, taking the full responsibility of estimating, demolition, setting forms, and pouring. He stamped his work with the name PLATT. His office was in his home and his equipment was stored in his garage. Before long he had a family helping in the office. When he learned of the SBA's 8A program, he applied for it and received the certification. This allowed Platt Construction to bid government and state projects and ultimately prompted Dick to move his business to Milwaukee, opening opportunities for other larger projects. Platt became a solid provider for projects in which DBE or MBE involvement was stipulated.
A long-time NAMC member company, Platt Construction is a certified service-disabled veteran-owned minority business general contractor, subcontractor, and design-builder. Thirty percent of their projects are general contracting. They’ve completed over $400 million in projects since 1980. With a track record spanning over four decades, more than 2,000 projects, and over 20 prestigious awards, their customers rely on Platt Construction’s honesty and integrity. Says Platt, "This vision runs in the family, and I’m pleased that the second generation of Platt Construction will carry on the tradition of the first,” as it moves forward with his children.
Platt Construction continues to enjoy the rewards of homespun grit and American industrialism. Operating in eight states and performing work ranging from general contracting to specialized underground structures, the company has an untarnished record of project completion and extremely high marks for quality and safety. What’s the reason for their long-term excellence? Dick's gift for construction has always been a vision for solutions. Value creation and problem solving require the creative push of understanding minds who see the big picture.
Today, Platt Construction is undergoing big changes. His children, Nikki Platt and Tony Platt, are transitioning to run the day-to-day operations and helping to strengthen the company’s technology and services. They have also been reaching out to colleges and universities to fill student internships. They hope to give more young people the opportunity to become involved in the construction industry through working with Platt. It is a very exciting time!
Dick Platt became a NAMC member some twenty years ago because of his desire to strengthen other minority business enterprises like his own. Platt Construction has a national footprint and from that was born his desire to serve as a NAMC national board member. NAMC has always been a source of encouragement to him and support to his business. He has called on the association numerous times for assistance.
For more information about Platt Construction, please visit: http://www.plattcon.net/
NAMC Welcomes New Chapters and Two Corporate Sponsors
NAMC Dallas/Ft. Worth
NAMC welcomes our new Dallas/Ft. Worth Chapter located in Arlington, TX. The Dallas/Ft. Worth Chapter joined NAMC in February, 2016 with Sharon Douglas as its chairman. NAMC national board member Demetria Bivens says. “We’re an advocate for minority contractors, including African Americans, Hispanics, Asian, American Indians, and women. Our mission is to pursue, win, and execute. There are other associations around, and we’re looking to be able to help them to create more opportunities for minority contractors.” The specific and primary purpose of this chapter is to initiate, encourage and assist construction contractors, and their craftsmen as well to initiate and operate training programs for persons desiring employment and procurement opportunities in all areas of the industry enabling the integration of ethnic groups, races, creeds and colors into the construction industry."
NAMC Dallas/Ft. Worth Chapter
Chairman: Sharon Douglas
Executive Director: Demetria Bivens
2000 E. Lamar Blvd, Suite 600, Dallas, TX 76006
Phone: (817) 303-2160
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
NAMC Northeast Florida
The NAMC Northeast Florida Chapter is located in Jacksonville, FL. The chapter joined in June 2016 with Larry Leonard, III as chapter president. Mr. Leonard is a master trainer and accredited training sponsor for NCCER (National Center for Construction Education and Research), a nonprofit education foundation. The NAMC/NCCER Partnership means that NAMC can offer certified construction training with curriculum approved by the National Education Department. The Northeast Florida chapter’s objectives are to assist with the goals of the NAMC National Education Training Committee and offer opportunities through other NAMC chapters to provide training for individuals who would like to become master trainers and craft instructors.
NAMC Northeast Florida Chapter
President: Larry Leonard
Executive Director: Deborah Thompson
10650-6 Haverford Road, Jackson, FL 32218
Phone: (904) 334-4888
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
PCL Construction and CRB Consulting Engineers
NAMC welcomes PCL Construction and CRB Consulting Engineers as the newest members of its Major Corporate Group partners.
PCL is a group of independent construction companies owned by employee shareholders across the United States, Canada, and Australia. As a diversified general contractor, PCL celebrates the past and builds for the future. Read below to discover PCL’s history: starting in Canada, expanding through the United States, and into Australia. PCL’s vision, core values, and guiding principles enhance the organization’s internal culture, and maintains PCL’s reputation as a construction leader, an employer of choice, and an active community member.
CRB Consulting Engineers has been in business for more than 30 years as a global consulting, design and construction services firm that relentlessly pursues and successfully delivers technicall solutions to clients in advanced technology industries. Founded in 1984 as a single three-person office, CRB has grown to a team of 900+ in 14 offices serving clients throughout the world. Their vision is to be the preeminent team of planners, designers, and constructors providing integrated solutions to advanced technology industries.
NAMC looks forward to a long and productive collaboration with both PCL Construction and CRB Consulting Engineers.
NAMC South Carolina Chapter Partnering with Local Officials to Improve the SLBE Program in Richland County
(RICHLAND PIO) – Richland County Councilman Jim Manning, who represents District 8, was unanimously voted chair of an ad hoc committee that aims to improve the outreach of small, local businesses.
Manning, along with council member, Norman Jackson, Richland County, and Transportation Penny staff, attended a board meeting with the South Carolina chapter of the National Association of Minority Contractors to form a partnership to create forthcoming improvements to the County’s SLBE program.
“I am proud of the new working relationship that has been forged between the contractors and staff,” Manning said. “It is truly a win-win for Richland County."
The Richland County Office of Small Business Opportunity (OSBO), which is a division of the Office of Procurement, manages the County’s Small Local Business Enterprises (SLBE) program. The purpose of the SLBE program is to provide a race- and gender-neutral procurement tool for the County to use in its efforts to ensure that all segments of the local business community have a reasonable and significant opportunity to participate in contracts with Richland County and other entities.
The OSBO is guided by an ad hoc committee comprised of five Council members: Chairman Manning, Bill Malinowski, Damon Jeter, Paul Livingston and Norman Jackson. Ad hoc committees are various short-term committees that are formed for a specific task or objective and are dissolved after the completion of the task or achievement of the objective. Presently, there are 19 different ad hoc committees comprised of County Council members and staff.
“I’m honored to receive my colleagues’ support to lead this most important committee,” Manning said.
At its recent meeting, the OSBO Ad Hoc Committee recommended increasing a contract cap from $250,000 to $500,000, which will provide certified small, local business enterprises the opportunity to bid on larger contracts, thereby increasing their profit margins. This aims to also assist the firms in “resume building,” which will lead to work on larger projects.
For more information about Richland County’s SLBE Program, click here, email SLBE@rcgov.us or call (803) 576-1540.
To contact the NAMC South Carolina Chapter:
T: (803) 714-7990
Save the Date - Upcoming NAMC Events
Monday, December 19, 2016 | 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM
NAMC Philadelphia Chapter: Toy Drive & Meet and Greet
Location: 2440 Tasker Street, Philadelphia, PA 19145 (Philadelphia Chapter Headquarters)
Contact the NAMC Philadelphia Chapter for more information
T: (215) 372-7330
Wednesday, February 8 - Thursday, February 9, 2017
NAMC Wisconsin Chapter / Wisconsin Department of Transportation
NAMC 31st Annual DBE Workshops and Secretary's Golden Shovel Awards
Location: Country Springs Conference Center and Hotel, Pewaukee, Wisconsin 53072
Contact the NAMC Wisconsin Chapter for more information
T: (414) 454-9475
Wednesday, February 15 - Friday, February 17, 2017
2017 Midwinter Board of Directors Meeting & Strategic Planning Session
San Diego, California
More information will be provided soon.
Wednesday, June 14 - Friday, June 16, 2017
(A.M. Board of Directors Meeting on Saturday, June 17, 2017)
NAMC 48th Annual National Conference - Columbia, South Carolina
Location: Columbia Marriott, 1200 Hampton Street, Columbia, SC 29201-2826
Columbia Marriott Room Reservations
Room rate: $155/night
For more information, contact the NAMC National Office
T: (202) 296-1600
Held Every Wednesday at 9:00 AM
NAMC Mid California Chapter Meeting
Black Contractors Association (BCA) & the San Diego Minority Construction Coalition
Location: 6125 Imperial Avenue, San Diego, California 92114
For more information regarding this meeting or to become a member of NAMC Mid California, contact the NAMC Mid California Chapter
T: (888) 418-1833
The Home Depot National Rebate Incentive Program
NAMC invites construction contractors to save money and time and support minority- and women-owned contractors through the Association by enrolling in the Home Depot National Rebate Incentive Program.
Enroll to receive a potential 2% annual rebate on qualifying pre-tax purchases
Register any form of payment accepted at the Home Depot - including checking accounts, credit cards, debit cards, and the Home Depot accounts.
Rebate payments are issued once a year, within 60 days of the end of the calendar year.
No cost to join and no minimum spending requirement - to sign up and start saving, visit www.homedepot.com/proloyalty. Agreement code: NAMC
For assistance, call the Home Depot at (866) 333-3551 or the NAMC national office at (202) 296-1600.