The IBE Business
Conference Presented
By Delta Faucet Company

Gateway to Opportunities

As Central Indiana corporations and organizations are committed to creating strategies to level the playing field, this conference will offer real and meaningful opportunities for black, brown, women, veterans, and disability business owners. Come meet and hear from key decision-makers about Supplier Diversity Initiatives and multi-million dollar contracting opportunities. Learn tips from established executives and business owners on doing business with public, private, and international companies. Hear from funders on how to increase your capacity through access to capital and experts on the advantages of partnerships.

The Annual Business Conference will include:

  • A Lunch & Learn presented by Everwise Credit Union
  • Mayor’s Breakfast
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Our 2024 Business Conference

Indianapolis Mayor
Joe Hogsett

Mayor’s Breakfast 

This event includes business development, diversity highlights, award recognition, and networking opportunities. It will be emceed by Rafael Sanchez.

This event is by invitation only.

Date: Monday, June 24, 2024
Time: Check-in begins at 8:00 AM; 8:30 AM-10:15 AM
Location: Indiana Convention Center, 500 Ballroom


Governor’s Awards Reception

This reception acknowledges the outstanding achievements of African Americans throughout the State of Indiana.  These awards recognize some of the community’s unsung heroes who work tirelessly for the advancement of all Hoosiers.

Awards will be presented to recipients in the following categories: Sam Jones Trailblazer; Reverend Charles Williams Community Service; Achievement in Education; Achievement in Business; Entrepreneurship; “Next Level” Award; and Harold O. Hatcher Award.

Date: Tuesday, June 25, 2024
Time: 2:30 PM – 4:00 PM
Location: Indiana Convention Center, 500 Ballroom

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Our Workshops

Session One

City of Indianapolis: Project Pipeline: 2025 Opportunities and Beyond

Description: In this workshop, information regarding upcoming multi-million-dollar projects with numerous contracting opportunities for the Minority/Women/ Veteran and Disability-Owned Business community will be provided. Details and opportunities on several projects involving Indy Parks, Indianapolis Airport Authority, Health and Hospital Corporation, Indiana University Health-Construction and Supply Chain; and the Capital Improvement Board will be shared with attendees.

Presenters: John Bowen, Chief Engineer, Department of Public Works, City of Indianapolis; Jennifer Osei-Aberese-Heltsley Program Director, IU Health Design & Construction; Felicia J. Roseburgh, Supplier Diversity Director, Health and Hospital Corporation; Holli Harrington, Senior Director of Supplier Diversity, Indianapolis Airport Authority; Kobi M. Wright, Business Operations Director/Senior Counsel, Indiana Convention Center and Lucas Oil Stadium

Session two

Lunch & Learn – Navigating the Path to Financial Resources

Description: Join us for a dynamic Lunch and Learn panel discussion where we delve into the crucial topic of accessing capital for Black-owned businesses and XBEs (Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprises). Our expert panelists will provide invaluable insights, strategies, and resources to navigate the complexities of securing funding in today’s competitive landscape.

Panelists: Celeste Jones, Area Manager, Everwise Credit Union; Patty M. Wheeler, Vice President Commercial Lending, Everwise Credit Union; Philip Hogan, Financial Advisor, Everwise Credit Union, Rickey Miller, Business Service Development Officer, Everwise Credit Union, Darrius Davis, Commercial Lending Relationship Manager, Everwise Credit Union; Catrina Tate, Retail Banking; Everwise Credit Union, Alora Oldham, Relationship Manager, Bankable

Sponsors: Everwise Credit Union

session three

Succession Planning: Where is Your Company?

Description: Succession Planning is a business strategy for passing leadership roles on to one or more other employees. You will hear from several minority-owned business leaders who are in the various stages of the succession planning process. The discussion will focus on their unique perspectives on the importance and the fundamentals needed to ensure legacy and generational wealth building.

Presenters: Cynthia B. Gardner, Chief Operating Officer HGMC Supply, Inc./HG Metals; Kristin Mays-Corbitt, President and Chief Executive Officer, Mays Chemical Company G. Eddie Pillow, Chief Executive Office, Pillow Logistics; John T. Thompson, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Thompson Distribution Company

Session Four

Opportunities to Grow Your Business in Underutilized HUD Zones

Description: Representatives from the Small Business Administration (SBA) and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) workshop will share potential economic opportunities through HUD-funded projects. Discussions around the Small Business Administration’s HUBZone will provide resources to fuel small business growth in historically underutilized business zones 

Presenters: Sharon Harvey, Lead Outreach and Marketing Specialist, Small Business Administration (SBA); Andrea Ekiyor, Field Policy and Management, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)

Session One

How to Find Upcoming Business Opportunities and Project Needs at State Educational Institutions

Description: Learn from State Educational Institution (SEI) procurement officers and business diversity professionals about both upcoming opportunities, ongoing needs, and the strategies you must employ to be recognized as a viable candidate for current and future business opportunities. 

Presenters: Roger Hassenzahl, Director of Purchasing Services, Ball State University; Michael Morrison, Director of Purchasing and Risk Manager, Diversity Spend Program Manager, Vincennes University; Marcus D. Bickle, Executive Director of Strategic Sourcing, Ivy Tech; Dillon Garver, Director of Procurement, Indiana State University; Jeffrey Sponn, Director of Purchasing, University of Southern Indiana

Session Two

Preparation Meets Opportunity: Doing Business with the State

Description: Come unlock the potential opportunities with various organizations through an innovative Preparation Meeting Opportunity (PMO) workshop designed to empower your business. Join our expert panel as we explore emerging opportunities to integrate resources into our ever-prospering communities. Don’t miss out on this transformative event where collaboration meets creativity, paving the way for you to do business across the State. During the workshop, the panel will share a presentation explaining their procurement process followed by a Q&A session. At the end of the workshop, all attendees will have an opportunity to grow their business acumen by networking.

Presenters: Meechelle Riley, Supplier Diversity Program Manager at Citizens Energy Group; Tasha Wood, Manager of Supplier Diversity at NiSource, Inc; Tierra Radford, Supplier Diversity Specialist at IndyGo; Chari E. Burke, Chief Administrative Officer, Indiana Department of Natural Resources.

Session Three

SSBCI Capital Readiness Workshop

Description: This hands on and instructional workshop will provide and assist XBE entrepreneurs and small businesses with the information and documents needed to apply for non-traditional capital, emphasizing the need for strategic planning and risk management.

Panelist: Keia Walker, Vice President, Community Development Banking, First Internet Bank

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