Striving for equity and inclusion
A couple of years into my service in this position, we formed the Minority Business Roundtable, made up of business leaders representing different ethnic and minority communities in Washington. This group has been helpful in creating ideas that help us promote inclusivity, beginning with good data. For example, our ADO’s responsible for local economic development are now required to track the number of minority and women-owned businesses they assist. Similarly, while Commerce is not a heavy procurement agency, we do pass through hundreds of millions of dollars a year to local communities. We became the first state government agency to require that our contractors and their subcontractors report on utilization of minority-owned businesses.