Over the last few years, TRCC has received requests for Black, Hispanic, women, LGBTQ+, veteran and other minority owned business connections. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and the desire for our community to work with minority owned businesses, interest has skyrocketed and we were frustrated that we did not have a robust solution.
We found the region is lacking an easily accessible and updated list of businesses that is free of charge to the MWDBE businesses. With the help of several community partners, TRCC is compiling a master directory of minority owned businesses to highlight and share with the community. Our goal is to increase business’ visibility and ultimately, their revenue. An invitation was emailed to all businesses asking them to self-select into the list. The invitation was also sent to partner agencies such as the Minority Business Development Center, Toledo Lucas County Public Library, the Regional Growth Partnership, the Toledo Lucas County Port Authority, the City of Toledo, Lucas County, Equality Toledo, and more.
MWDBE companies can include their contact information, industry type, business designation and any certifications they may have (not mandatory). Once published, the list will be accessible to any person or business interested in working with an MWDBE. To date, TRCC has collected the contact information for nearly 1,000 businesses which will be included in the MWDBE directory. This directory will be housed on TRCC’s website so that it can be easily updated and accessed by the community. A marketing strategy has been created to ensure that the directory is utilized by majority businesses and corporations in the region. The marketing strategy includes, print, radio, social media and direct mail. The messaging will make the case for why doing business with a MWDBE business is good for business and the regional economy.