The Supplier Diversity Program at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) hosted a Purposeful Conversation event on July 31, which included local women-owned businesses and strategic partners, including the Women’s Business Enterprise Center East, The Enterprise Center, the Economy League of Philadelphia and Everybody Builds Philadelphia. The event provided information and tools to help businesses successfully navigate the process to become a CHOP vendor.
The event was open to women-owned businesses in IT consulting services, IT hardware, marketing, event planning, catering, HVAC, janitorial services and pest control. Attendees heard from CHOP leaders across the organization.
Many CHOP leaders shared insights into how their departments are invested in supporting and being intentional about hiring minority vendors.
Jeff Raup, Assistant Vice President of Supply Chain Sourcing and Contracting, discussed the changes our Supply Chain team implemented to help minority vendors ease cash flow constraints. Gilbert Davis, Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer, discussed the importance of partnerships with diverse suppliers. Gayle Stidsen-Smith, AVP & Associate Chief Information Officer, discussed the barriers to women/minority-owned businesses in the information technology space, and how institutions can create models to overcome those barriers. Karen Peterson, Senior Manager of Environmental Services, provided an overview of key CHOP projects and shared how these projects differ from past projects in terms of size and complexity. Monique St. John, Assistant Vice President & Associate Chief Information Officer – IS Business Apps/Business Ops/HIM, discussed CHOP’s cloud migration process and needs to support this initiative, as well as evaluating and selecting third-party vendors and service providers.
Speakers and panelists included Avis Yates Rivers, President and CEO of Technology Concepts Group International, LLC., Donna Allie, President and CEO of Team Clean, Inc., Meghan Bezdikian, Co-Owner of Boxed Sourcing, and Nate Fowler of Fowler Pest Control. They discussed some of the issues facing women- and minority-owned businesses and the unique challenges they face when competing for business with anchor institutions.
“Not only are we increasing our overall spend, but we are cultivating and developing relationships with local diverse vendors,” said Marcia Wallace, Supplier Diversity Program Manager. “Our Supplier Diversity Program aims to build a pipeline of suppliers that reflects the rich diversity of our employees, patient families, board of trustees and the communities we serve and support.”