|Maria Contreras-Sweet, Administrator for the SBA|
Goal met for the first time in history
It was three years ago, in April 2013, that American Express OPEN and the SBA partnered to launch ChallengeHER, a national initiative to help boost government contracting opportunities for small businesses owned by women. In addition, since Maria Contreras-Sweet, Administrator for the U.S. Small Business Administration, was sworn into office in April, 2014, increasing federal contracting opportunities for Women-Owned Small Businesses has been a priority.
Why is this such an important event? Because women-owned businesses have been underrepresented in government contract opportunities. In 2015, the 5 percent goal was not only reached but surpassed as 5.05 percent or $17.8 billion of all federal small business eligible contracting dollars were awarded to WOSBs. This is the first time in history that this benchmark has ever been reached.
Why government contracts are so important
Increasing federal contracting opportunities for women-owned businesses has a positive impact on job creation, innovation, and growth in communities throughout the country. Expanding these contracting opportunities for women-owned businesses means more new jobs and industries to be created.
Not just a goal but a benchmark
Surpassing the goal, however, is not the end but a beginning from which women-owned businesses can continue to grow. "Meeting this goal means five percent is no longer our ceiling but our foundation upon which to build," said Contreras-Sweet."
Read more at www.wisconsinagconnection.com/story-national.php?Id=490&yr=2016