Minority Certification Hub
GLI is proud to launch the Minority Certification Hub, an official partnership with the Louisville Small Business Development Center (SBDC) to make it easier than ever to access free state and local minority business certifications.
While certifications are not needed by every business, many of the region’s largest corporations require them for contracting and procurement purposes and they provide access to certain grant and funding opportunities that are only open to certified minority businesses.
Businesses and organizations who often require certification during the procurement process include:
- State, local, and federal government agencies
- Public education systems including JCPS and the University of Louisville
- Public utilities and transportation
- Louisville Regional Airport Authority
- Large corporations
According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, certified minority enterprises often have a competitive advantage when it comes to specific grants and contracts. Governments often set a percentage of contracts aside for certain minority groups to ensure they are spending taxpayer dollars equitably. Organizations like the Minority Development Business Agency (MDBA) offer grants and loans specifically for certified minority businesses.
GLI’s Minority Certification Hub’s goal is to remove barriers to obtaining these certifications and help you and your business access more capital.
How does GLI’s Minority Certification Hub work?
The program is simple. Fill out the form below, and GLI will connect you with a certified coach to walk you through the certification process. While GLI and SBDC do not charge any fees to help your business get certified, some certifications do require fees.
What certifications can this program help me with?
There are a range of certifications that might apply to you or your business. Below are a few of the most common, although we have the capability to help you with many others:
- 8(a) Business Development Program, or SBA 8(a) – for businesses at least 51% owned by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals as defined by the SBA (one criteria is that personal net worth must be less than $250,000, excluding home & business)
- Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) – for businesses that are at least 51% owned by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals (defined by race and gender groups found to be disadvantaged by the U.S. Small Business Administration, or those who are assessed on an individual basis for “social” and “economic” disadvantaged status)
- Disabled Business Enterprise (DBE/DiBE) – for businesses that are at least 51% owned by persons with physical or mental impairments which substantially limit major life activities
- Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender- Owned Business Enterprise (LGBTE) – for businesses that are at least 51% owned by LGBT individuals
- Minority Business Enterprise, or Minority-Owned Business Enterprise (MBE) – for businesses that are at least 51% owned by representatives of a racial group classified as a minority
- Minority and Women Business Enterprise (MWBE) – for businesses that are at least 51% owned by a minority and/or a woman
- Women Business Enterprise, or Woman-owned Business Enterprise (WBE) – for business that are at least 51% owned by women.
What comes next?
This service is for any minority-owned business who has an interest in obtaining free certification at the state or local level, or learning more about the certification process. Our coaches will walk with you step by step to make sure certification is right for you and ensure a seamless process.Get Started
For questions about this offering, reach out to GLI’s senior director of diversity, equity, and inclusion, Dana Johnson.