Small businesses are a strong force that will move our economy forward if we provide the right tools to help them succeed. Here at DOT, we have worked very hard to make sure small businesses are treated fairly and have an opportunity to compete for a fair amount of our agency’s contracting and subcontracting dollars.
Our Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU) has developed several initiatives to help small business owners achieve success, create jobs, and strengthen our economy. Some of those initiatives include the successful Bonding Education Program and the Woman & Girls Internship Program with Spelman College.
And yesterday at DOT’s Small Business Day, I was proud to announce the launch of another program that we’re very excited about – DOT’s Mentor-Protégé Pilot Program.
Having a mentor who’s been successful on large projects can help take small businesses to the “next level” so they’re better able to compete for work. And they’ll be able to work with their mentors and “pick their brains” for technical advice and other useful insights.
This new program is an important part of President Obama’s plan to create an America that’s “built to last” – an America where everyone has a fair shot, everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same set of rules.
We want every company, no matter how big or small and no matter who owns it, to have a chance to do the work America needs done, and we’re fighting every day to put people to work rebuilding our transportation network.
We want – and we need – workers from America’s small and disadvantaged businesses out there rolling up their sleeves and getting their hands dirty along with everyone else.
DOT will officially roll out this program later this spring, so stay tuned for further details. In the meantime, you can visit DOT’s OSDBU website to learn about the many ways in which DOT is assisting small and disadvantaged businesses.
Employing more than half of all American workers, small businesses are the backbone of our nation's success, and DOT will continue its efforts to expand opportunities for these businesses and the workers they employ.