Who we are

get to know about voelas 2019 event organization.

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  • 7:30 am — 5:00 pm ET
  • 7:00 am — 7:45 am ET
    Continental Breakfast
  • 8:30 am — 10:00 am ET
    Morning Plenary: Showcasing MBE Success Stories
    Come ready to hear from just a few MBEs in various industries and of various sizes as they share their success in deals they’ve worked on with the MMSDC/MBDA/BSG teams. In this session, you will learn the power of certification as we focus on firms that achieve our mission by owning, managing day to day and ultimately, controlling their companies. Hear from the 8th fastest growing woman-owned firm as well as an MBE executive whose experience prepared him to be the Founder and CEO of his own firm, to a successful serial entrepreneur who leveraged the council’s network and expertise to grow and diversify new lines of business. You don’t want to miss this kick off as it truly underscores why we all do what we do!

    Sylvester Hester

    LM Manufacturing, LLC

    Tamira Chapman

    Tamira Chapman

  • 10:00 am — 5:00 pm ET
    Resource Center – Leveraging Tech to Ease Staffing Burdens, Sustainability: Energy and Waste Reduction; Understanding the Power of Your Certification; Economist, Electrification
  • 10:30 am — 11:45 am ET
    MBE – Supply Chain Lessons Learned: From Reactive to Proactive in 2023

    The COVID Pandemic taught us that the supply chain was not invincible. We learned the hard way through empty store shelves, food, and necessity shortages as well as lack of access to essentials causing panic and distress. This impacted not only the trucking and transportation industries but all other industries across the board. Come learn about how Data Analytics can prevent the supply chain dilemma of 2020 and how to prepare for the future using data analytic tools. Just say Never Again!

    Purpose of Session
    Suppliers leave with a new understanding how data analytics works to solve the challenges faced by a slow down of the supply chain.

    Jasaun Moncrief

    Adam Divine Analytics, LLC

  • 10:30 am — 11:45 am ET
    Corporate – Power to Purpose: How to Create Engaged Senior Executive Champions

    Just as companies have pledged to be more intentional about their hiring practices, many companies are being even more deliberate about purchasing goods and services from diverse suppliers. C – Suite leaders are realizing that partnering with diverse companies provide a Return on Investment (ROI) both internally and externally. This is about equity in the business community and doubling down on building up the economic viability of minority business enterprises. 

    This session will focus on how Supplier Diversity Professionals can engage their executive leadership team in understanding the long-term benefits of supplier diversity both socially and economically, while providing some real-life examples of how to successfully move your organization to achieve actionable results.  

    Our goal is to provide a robust experience for attendees and shift away from the typical panel discussion or workshop in which participants are spoken to for an hour. We have created a model suited to adult learning styles and practical applications that we are looking for speakers to incorporate. 

    Arthur McClellan

    Lear Corporation

    James B. Flynn

    JPMorgan Chase & Co.

  • 10:30 am — 11:45 am ET
    MBE – Future Trends in Managing Supply Chain Risk
  • 10:30 am — 11:45 am ET
    Corporate – Future Ready: Ensuring Your Strategy Drives Growth
  • 11:30 am — 12:55 pm ET
    Grab n’ Go Lunch
  • 12:00 pm — 2:45 pm ET
    Afternoon Plenary: A Snapshot of Your Council’s Future Ready Programs and Resources
    Just as our MBEs and corporate members must take steps to pivot for growth, so has your council. This session will feature a glimpse into various programs and resources MMSDC has created for you as corporate members and MBEs. The staff will share timely updates on the councils Mergers & Acquistions unit, as well as the impending CDFI, a community bank the council is in the process of creating to provide cost effective capital options to our MBEs. In our preliminary work, the team has already closed $25M in deals and has more than $150M in the pipeline. Likewise, we will review our progress with the mobility incubator we created with Silicon Valley investors that now boasts 13 corporate partners and more than $82 M in investments for M/WBEs. These and other great programs are sure to lead our corporations and MBEs into the future. Don’t miss this interactive session that will even allow you to weigh in on future programming. Many people talk and market, we are proud to say we do the actual work and achieve cutting-edge results that drive the years to economic equity from 333 years to 15 years.
  • 2:15 pm — 3:30 pm ET
    MBE – Managing Inflation Pricing, While Maintaining Customer Service
  • 2:15 pm — 3:30 pm ET
    Corporate – How to Maintain Current Program Gains, While Planning for Future Growth

    As the automotive industry and society becomes more cognizant of the importance of energy efficiency, climate change and adjusts accordingly through electrification, shifts of product development and programming will directly impact the goods and services needed from the supply base.   

    The supply base, which includes both Fortune 500 companies and Minority Business Enterprises, has to adapt and adjust. Maintaining your existing market share and focusing on continued growth is a strategic decision that must be made now – “Pivot or Standstill!”  

    This session will focus on how Corporations and Supplier Diversity Professionals can assist their supply base in maintaining their economic viability, by understanding emerging trends and opportunities while not losing existing market share.  We will discuss strategic initiatives to assist suppliers in leveraging existing competencies, identify opportunities to create joint ventures, strategic alliances as well as identify new and emerging industries to support this impending shift in the marketplace.

    Travis Spencer

    Ford Motor Company

    Charles Poon

    Electrified Systems Engineering

    Pina Vyas

    DTE Energy

    Brittany Fischer

    Consumers Energy

  • 2:15 pm — 3:30 pm ET
    MBE – Tax Engineering for Generational Wealth
  • 2:15 pm — 3:30 pm ET
    MBE – Culture in Hybrid Work
    Description: Building a strong company culture is essential in the workplace for many business leaders. COVID has affected the economy on multiple levels and has allowed the workforce to change from a normal environment to an abnormal environment. 
    Business leaders are challenged to not only manage the productivity of their company but to maintain a sustainable and engaged workforce. 
    Purpose of Session: In this session business leaders will learn how to overcome barriers that affect their culture in the workplace including Safety measures, Restructuring of the Workspace, Employee Engagement and Mental Health concerns.

    Andre Ash

    Michigan Chronicle

    Nacsha Ealy

    Michigan Rehabilitation Services

  • 3:45 pm — 5:00 pm ET
    ALL – Mental Health in the Workplace
    • Description: Mental Health is a key factor to create a successful work environment and business, if not addressed it can yield negative results for the employer and employee. Mental health must be at the forefront of each company to ensure quality employee output.

    Purpose of Session: To teach corporate members and MBEs various techniques to maximize its employees’ understanding of mental health and how to achieve optimum mental wellness. Through hands on training exercises corporate members and MBEs will gain the knowledge to:

    Help employees understand themselves and their co-workers better

    Help employees to identify the signs that someone may be struggling with a mental health or addiction issue.

    Sharing tools for reaching out to someone dealing with a mental health challenge.

    Sharing resources that can offer immediate help for someone struggling with a mental health issue

    Fostering more effective communication amongst your organization

    Increasing your organization’s overall mental health and productivity

    Dr. Gretchen Moran Marsh

    Dr. Gretchen Moran Marsh

    Dr. La-Toya Gaines

    Family Matters Counseling and Psychological Services, Inc.

    Sean Egan

    State of Michigan

2023 Speaker Registration