Vice President Harris will return Wednesday to her alma mater, Howard University, for a Greater Washington Partnership announcement of $4.7 billion in commitments over five years to increase the diversity of Capital Region businesses and workers.
Why it matters: The partnership — an alliance of CEOs and community leaders from Baltimore to Richmond — believes that in the global war for talent, the region’s economic future will be tied to being more inclusive.
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Harris will deliver remarks on small business. She’ll be joined by Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and Small Business Administration head Isabella Guzman.
The $4.7 billion, backed by some of the area’s largest employers, will be directed three ways, the partnership’s announcement says:
Supplier diversity: $2.6 billion toward procurement spending with diverse suppliers and Minority Business Enterprises (MBEs), with a priority on Black- and Latino-owned businesses.
Racial equity: $1.5 billion in wealth-building opportunities in underrepresented communities, including direct corporate investments in affordable housing, and in community organizations that are leading place-based equity initiatives.
Access to capital: $619 million for financial investments in local Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) and Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs).
What we’re watching: The partnership hopes this plan will become a model for other regions’ approach to economic growth, with collaboration across public and private sectors.
JPMorgan Chase vice chairman Peter Scher, who chairs the partnership, said: “This is a testament to the power of collective action.”
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