Op/Ed: Working Together for the Sake of MBE's
By Jerry Mathis, President of the Prince George's County Business and Community Coalition
(PRINCE GEORGE'S COUNTY - May 11, 2009) - I attended the Business Mixer & Legislative Luncheon sponsored by Economic Development And Training Institute, Inc. (EDTI) on Friday May 8, 2009. The successful event was well-attended and a lot of very valuable information was presented to the those in attendance.
The attendance at this event and every other Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) event attracts more participants than any other events including education forums.
This very important fact should alert everyone that the lack of MBE participation in federal, state and local government contracting is an issue that has finally been put on the front burner and won't go away. I applaud the leaders who have sacrificed much to fight the good fight to hold government and you accountable.
I have often pointed out that we have too many groups and government agencies trying to fix the MBE problem, and as a result we keep going in circles with no sustainable results. It's a fact that these many groups are not communicating with each other for various reasons.
It appears that all of the groups individually have something to contribute to the MBE cause; however the power rests in a collective effort if we truly intend to change the way business is done in relation to the lack of MBE opportunities.
The passage of CR 23 which established more opportunities for MBE's and LBE's at National Harbor
was a direct result of the efforts of Prince Georges Business and Community Coalition (PGBCC ) and other groups working together for a common cause. The result was a testament to the power of groups working together collectively.
As I thought about the life of Chet Howard who recently passed away, I reflected on these words he would often say: "We have to learn to work together".
Chet saw our inability to work together as our greatest impediment to success, and I for one agree with him. If we believe in Chet's words then we should not seek to establish new organizations but seek to make the ones we have work. The establishment of new organizations simply perpetuates the dissolution of our power and unity.
I have always been and will remain an activist for the people. My goal is to correct the wrongs perpetrated against the citizens of this county by any means necessary. I will continue to expose and seek to destroy corruption at all levels of government with the hope that in the year 2010, we can elect true servants of the people.