Company in an industry leader in doing business with diverse businesses
California American Water recently held an online event that recognized diverse businesses and other committed contractors as part of its core mission to promote diversity amongst utility contractors and suppliers.
California American Water is an industry leader in supporting diverse suppliers. In 2020 The company spent nearly 40 percent or $42 million of its business with minority, women, LGBTQ+ and/or disabled veteran-owned businesses – far exceeding its regulatory goals. The California Public Utilities Commission current diverse business spend goal for regulated is 21.5 percent annually.
“We’re always strive to hire and do business with those who reflect the communities we serve,” California American Water President Rich Svindland said. “But beyond that, we also realize that our position enables us to support our large contractors in their mission to diversify their subcontracting and procurement partners.”
California American Water has not just endeavored to reach its own spending goals, but it has also worked to create a new culture within the industry that is focused on this critical issue. Every year the company conducts extensive outreach campaigns to local, state and national businesses to ensure they are properly registered as a diverse enterprise in California. The company works with these businesses to ensure they have visibility in the candidate pools utilities consult when looking to hire contractors and other third-party businesses.
California American Water holds an annual diverse supplier conference and showcase which brings together the company’s business managers as well as its major contractors with diverse vendors to be interviewed, to collaborate and to demonstrate their goods and services.
This year, due to COVID-19, the company held a virtual awards ceremony, recognizing business and contractors who have provided good service and a demonstrated commitment to this mission.
“We wanted to recognize the excellent work that our businesses partners have been doing in terms of supporting all of our local businesses,” said California American Water’s Business Performance Director Ed Simon, who heads up the company’s diverse supplier mission. “We gave awards based on performance in varying categories of business size and type as well recognized some of our own folks for their work. In all, it was a tremendous success that was very well received by the viewing audience.”
Some highlights from the company’s virtual Supplier Diversity Awards include:
- Recognition of large contractors for their commitment to doing business with diverse enterprises.
- Recognition of the company’s inaugural Partnering Forward to Success Program resulted in prime suppliers spending more than $5 million with diverse subcontractors.
- Video profiles of diverse and committed enterprises.
- Informative segments on why diversity in business suppliers is critical to local economies.
The awards were granted as follows:
Diverse Business Enterprise Changemaker Award
This award goes to a small diverse supplier that has delivered outstanding efforts and/or improvement during the year.
SR Diversified LLC - This is a women-owned business that provides engineering related services, always answers our requests and is a true partner of more than five years.
Diverse Supplier Producer Award
Given to a Small diverse supplier who has worked with one or more business units to achieve a shared goal resulting in innovative and sustainable outcomes.
Pivotal Adaptive Services – Pivotal is an Asian Pacific Islander-owned GIS and inspection related service and has been our Mentor Protege for 2019-2021. We are so proud of what this DBE (Diverse Business Enterprise) has accomplished over the last two years.
Tier-Two Economic Impact Award
Awarded to a Prime Supplier who has worked consistently at sustainable practices to include and engage diverse suppliers in a subcontracting capacity.
Monterey Peninsula Engineering - Their work has supported California American Water's supplier diversity strategies resulting in an increased second tier spend with diverse suppliers. This supplier increased spending with diverse subcontractors within the last 12 months.
This firm has been a true partner in acknowledging our call for action to be inclusive of diverse suppliers. MPE has also consistently increased spending in this area.
Partnering Forward to Success Program Recognition
Our Partnering Forward to Success Program was developed to encourage prime suppliers to mentor a minimum of one diverse supplier for one year.
Spiess Construction - This award goes to the prime supplier with the most utilization of diverse small businesses in our inaugural year. Spiess spent $2.5M in 2020 with diverse enterprises.
Video stories featuring some of these businesses can be found the company’s YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/caamwater
California American Water is looking to capitalize on last year’s success and to continue to serve as a leader in this important mission.
About California American Water: California American Water, a subsidiary of American Water (NYSE: AWK), provides high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater services to more than 880,000 California residents. Information regarding California American Water’s service areas can be found on the company’s website www.californiaamwater.com.
About American Water: With a history dating back to 1886, American Water is the largest and most geographically diverse U.S. publicly traded water and wastewater utility company. The company employs more than 7,000 dedicated professionals who provide regulated and market-based drinking water, wastewater and other related services to 15 million people in 46 states. American Water provides safe, clean, affordable and reliable water services to our customers to help make sure we keep their lives flowing. For more information, visit amwater.com and follow American Water on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
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