Representatives of Minority, Women and Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (MWDBE) met today to discuss strategies, best practices and recount success stories for winning minority contracts for public and private projects around the region.
Keynote speaker Keith B. Keys of KBK Enterprises spoke to DUQ about the qualities they and others look for when deciding to award a contract. He noted that vendor relations and orgainized, accountable finances are essential qualities of a viable, competative company.
Also in attendance was Don Barden of PITG Gaming. Barden is developing the Majestic Star Casino on the North Shore. Though he did not commit to a specific percentage of contracts that he would award to minority businesses, he did say that it was important to him to diversify the work, and he hoped that minority contractors would make themselves stand out from the competition.
In an aside he also mentioned that he would be pushing for table games to be legalized in time for the casino's opening in 2009. In response to questions of whether it was smooth sailing from here on out with the construction project, Barden laughed and said the he hoped so, because he has begun to feel like a marathon "hurdle jumper."