January 2021
Issue No. 1
From your MBEIC Chair

Happy New Year to all!!!!  

2020 was not an easy year for many small businesses, but we have 2021 to look forward to as we continue to make changes to our businesses that will help us achieve the success we are working towards.  

Last year made us all look differently at the way we do business. We have learned that we need to be more creative in finding opportunities for growth.  We have had to adjust to new forms of doing business like meeting virtually and working from home.  We've had to adapt to our clients’ new ways of working and expectations. We've had to find new ways to deliver current services and new ideas. While seeming difficult at times, our strengthen as a small business is our ability to quickly meet the new challenge, make the change and adapt. This time is ours to succeed. 

Reflecting on 2020, I faced my own obstacles as a small business.  I knew I had a service to deliver to my clients, but I was facing difficulties in finding the supplies and chemicals needed to keep delivering services, so we broadened our suppliers and created great new relationships with new additional suppliers.  Finding employees and filling in for employees that were out sick with COVID proved to be difficult, but we adapted and started working with staffing agencies to help fill the gaps.  And there was the concern of ensuring that our cash flow was going to be there to meet our expenses and payroll, so we tightened our belt on spending and looked for programs like the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) to help get us through any financial down times. 

We as small businesses need to work towards are strengthens and adaptability. We also need to look for those opportunities and programs out there that can help support our businesses. 

Regarding opportunities and programs, as you are aware the PPP program has been extended. SBA is now tasked with servicing low incoming, minority owned and disadvantaged businesses with the eligible businesses being expanded and the extension is targeting those businesses that did not get an opportunity at funds the first go around. If you did not receive funds with the launch of the program, I encourage you to apply.  If you need help on how to apply the SMSDC is here to help you.

2021 is about perseverance, it is about continued adaptability, and it is about utilizing all the tools out there to help us being successful, including those the SMSDC/NMSDC provide.  So as small businesses we need to be ready to align ourselves and learn from other small businesses.  If we stand strong together we can succeed. 

Your MBEIC Chair,

Debbie Trevino
Treco Services
SMSDC is excited to introduce our newest Local Corporate Members:
Union Pacific Railroad & Zones, Inc
Union Pacific’s Supplier Diversity program was implemented in 1982. Union Pacific was the first among the Class I Railroads to establish a formal, company-wide supplier diversity program. In the first year of the program Union Pacific spent $10 million with M/WBEs. Today, their direct spending has grown to more than $400 million. UP currently has over 276 suppliers in 35 states.

Goals include:
  • Increase spending and utilization with diverse businesses.
  • Design programs that will assist diverse businesses with growth and development.
  • Offer assistance to help educate and expand business networks for long-term stability and success.
  • Offer diverse businesses the maximum opportunity to compete with other suppliers and contracts in the marketplace.

How to do business with Union Pacific?
Send your company's capabilities statement (one page company summary statement or brief Power Point presentation) highlighting/demonstrating the material or services your company can offer Union Pacific to supplierdiversity@up.com. The one pager should be a detailed but concise summary of the material or services you can provide. If you choose to provide a Power Point, be sure it includes:
  • Business Name
  • Key Contacts/Personnel that would interact with UP (Name, Title, Division, Phone Number and Email Address)
  • An Aboutpage to include a brief introduction, summary about the company to include history and direction of the company
  • 1 Page for each service type offered or a summary page of the material offered.
  • What does UP purchase? https://www.up.com/suppliers/what-we-purchase/index.htm

Contact Info: supplierdiversity@up.com
Website Address: UP Supplier Diversity

Zones is your 1st Choice for IT ™. They have been a proud NMSDC Corporate Plus member since 2005. For their clients, this certification confirms our outstanding commitment to international technology fulfillment and customer service excellence. 100% of spend with Zones can be counted towards Tier I Supplier Diversity Goals and can provide Tier II reporting. Zones works to reflect the global diversity of their customers. To do so, they actively seek and support business development through the NMSDC and it’s 23 Councils. By partnering with regional councils, they engage in economic and social responsibly efforts in the communities in which they live, work and play. 

Zones provides comprehensive IT solutions to customers across the country and around the world. And they do it extremely well. In fact, they've taken pride in becoming experts in all things tech for more than 30 years. But we don't do it alone. They collaborate with industry-leading partners who help them deliver customizable solutions and positive business outcomes to meet the needs of those they serve. Their expertise revolves around four Solution Environments – Workplace Modernization, Network Optimization, Data Center Transformation, and Security Fortification.  With a global team of over 2,000 hardware and software specialists, serving solutions that align with the needs of today's businesses has become their number one area of focus. The goal is simple – to enhance your return on investment, improve efficiency, and optimize workflows. Their reach spans to more than 80 countries – from Seattle to Sydney, Dallas to New Delhi, and far beyond. So, if you're looking for a company that can deliver complex IT solutions simply, email customerservice@zones.com or give them a call at 1.800.408.9663  to take your business to the next level.

You may know, Zones, LLC is almost a 35-year-old business. What you may not know, is CEO, Firoz Lalji, was born in Uganda. He received his BS in Economics from the London School of Economics (LSE) in 1969. After meeting and marrying Najma in Uganda, Firoz and his family were forced out of the country in 1972, when dictator Idi Amin expelled many of its Asian citizens. He became the principal provider for his household at 24. The family moved to Canada, where he built a successful chain of 225 specialty photo stores in Canada and the USA, which was sold in 1997. So, Firoz knows the challenges and roadblocks a minority business owner encounters when building a company.  He values the doors their MBE certification has opened for Zones, and he pays it forward. As a leader in the MBE community, he embraces our responsibility to support the professional growth of other diverse businesses and leaders. 

Firoz was inducted into the Minority Business Hall of Fame in 2014 and Zones has won many awards over the years. For a full list, please visit: https://www.zones.com/site/statics/static_page.html?name=corporate/about-us/awards-accolades   


Website Address: www.zones.com

SBA and Treasury Announce PPP Re-Opening and Issue New Guidance
The U.S. Small Business Administration, in consultation with the Treasury Department, announced on January 8, that the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) will re-open the week of January 11 for new borrowers and certain existing PPP borrowers. To promote access to capital, initially only community financial institutions will be able to make First Draw PPP Loans on Monday, January 11, and Second Draw PPP Loans on Wednesday, January 13. The PPP will open to all participating lenders shortly thereafter. Updated PPP guidance outlining Program changes to enhance its effectiveness and accessibility was released on January 6 in accordance with the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Non-Profits, and Venues Act.

This round of the PPP continues to prioritize millions of Americans employed by small businesses by authorizing up to $284 billion toward job retention and certain other expenses through March 31, 2021, and by allowing certain existing PPP borrowers to apply for a Second Draw PPP Loan.


Comm-Tron, LLC - Boerne, TX
Cross-National Communications Partners, LLC - San Antonio, TX
FurtherPerformance Services, LLC - Austin, TX
Goodman Communication Services, LLC - Fredericksburg, TX
Goodman Telecom Services, LLC - Fredericksburg, TX
Hays Brothers Painting Services, Inc - Moore, TX
Jalem Welding Services, LLC - McAllen, TX
Miles Architecture, LLC - Oklahoma City, OK
Mtech Partners, LLC - Cedar Park, TX
Siembra y Cosecha, LLC - Weslaco, TX
TekHouse, LLC - Tulsa, OK

Applause App Quality, Inc - Austin, TX
Ann Shenethia Manuel, LLC - Norman, OK
Capital Filtrations, Inc - Austin, TX
Cheddies, LLC - San Antonio, TX
Cross-National Resource Partners - San Antonio, TX
E&V Powerwash and Lube, LLC - Midland, TX
Global Containers & Custom Packaging, Inc - El Paso, TX
Goodman Telecom Holdings, LLC - Fredericksburg, TX
Mobile Vroom Pack - San Antonio, TX
Sweets By Justus - Oklahoma City, OK
Traclabs, Inc - San Antonio, TX

Albor Homes, LLC - San Antonio, TX
America Samkwang, Inc - McAllen, TX
AppMeetup - Austin, TX
CeCe Jones-Davis, LLC - Edmond, OK
Curativo Enteprises, LLC - San Antonio, TX
LNZ Enterprises, LLC - Carlsbad, NM
Specialized Court Services - Lawton, OK
Suncrest Staffing, LLC - Cibolo, TX
Yudell Isidore, PLLC - Austin, TX


Applied Energy Solutions, Inc.
Arise Solutions, Inc.
Arsa Distributing, Inc.
Avanzar Interior Technologies, Ltd
BTS Group, Inc.
Carmen Pacheco Transportation LLC
Cortex Consulting Services Inc.
D & B General Cleaning Contractor, Inc.
ECM International, Inc.
Field Trip Creative, LLC
Fletes Group International, LLC
For Positioning Only, LLC
Fusion Industries LLC
Gilliam IP PLLC
Greenview, LLC
H. Espinoza Distributing, Inc.
Human Capital International, LLC
Instant Data Technologies, Inc.
Interload Forwarding
International Academy of Tax and Trade L w, LLC
Ivy Rod, Inc.
James Harshman LLC
Little Red Rooster Ice Cream Company
McClain Electrical Contractor, Inc.
Optech Gente, Inc.
Optech Warehouse Franchise, LLC
P.D. Morrison Enterprises
Paul Garcia, P. C.
Power Of Two Productions, LLC
Production Fire and Safety, LLC
QPL, Inc.
Ravisa Brokerage LLC
RightWorks Staffing, Inc
S & T Janitorial Service LLC
Seisa Medical Sales LLC
Sistema Technologies, Inc.
The Freemount Corporation
U.S. Electrical Corporation
Virgo Associates II, LLC

You must participate in the session prior to the Certification Committee reviews your application. 
All new MBE's must attend a Pre-Certification & Post-Certification session. The sessions will be held by conference call several times a month. Please make sure to attend one pre-certification & one post-certification session in order to complete the certification process. Please contact Alana Ortega, Certification Manager, at alana@smsdc.org to register.
The following are dates available for January:
Wednesday, January 6th
Wednesday, January 13th
Wednesday, January 20th
Wednesday, January 27th
Trainings are available from 10am – 12pm CST on the dates listed above for the month of January. Training may take about 30 minutes however please allow additional time depending on your company structure and questions you may have.
Update your MBE Profile

Attention MBEs, don't miss out on opportunities to meet with SMSDC Corporate Partners and Purchasing Agents because of outdated information on your MBE profile. Contact information including outdated email addresses or phone numbers could cause your company to miss out on an opportunity.

When completing your RECERTIFICATION application please verify all contact information before submitting.

Opportunities are based on the information you provide in your MBE profile, so please be specific regarding the products and services you offer.

Want to add or delete a NAICS Code to your profile? Great…We can assist you with that email Alana Ortega at alana@smsdc.org for more information.

If this is a New Application, and you are having trouble uploading your documents, please contact Alana Ortega at 512.297.6478 during regular business hours or send an e-mail to alana@smsdc.org.

If this is a ReCertification, and you are having trouble uploading your documents, please contact Gabrielle Ramirez at 512.694.0522 during regular business hours or send an e-mail to gabrielle@smsdc.org.
To obtain a copy of your MBE logo, please follow the steps below:
  • Login with email/password associated with your SMSDC Certification
  • You will see options such as applying for recertification or viewing/printing current certificate
  • To obtain logo select “NMSDC Logo Pack” from the bottom right-hand corner and press the download button
The MBE logo is available for use on your company’s marketing print and electronic material. The MBE logo will only be available for your use as long as your company has a current & active MBE certification.
In alignment of SMSDC’s four pillars, Certify. Develop. Connect. Advocate., education continues to be fundamental. Launched in 2012, SMSDC continues to offer the PLUS+ Platform classes: Benchmarking Plus & Capacity Plus. These signature programs are a mix of in person & online courses presented by supplier diversity expert Reginald K. Layton, Vice President, Supplier Diversity & Supply Chain Sustainability for Johnson Controls’ Inc and Ralph G. Moore, CPA, president of Ralph G. Moore & Associates (RGMA). Moore is recognized as one of the world’s foremost thought-leaders in the area of supplier diversity and minority business development.
Reginald K. Layton
Ralph G. Moore
For CORPORATE MEMBERS ONLY is a process to accelerate supplier diversity initiatives based on real world experimentation. Benchmarking Plus delivers the tools and management perspective to help your corporation strengthen your supplier diversity processes. 
For CERTIFIED MBEs is a process to enhance sales and marketing processes and build their capacity to work with Fortune 500 corporations. 

Benchmarking Plus & Capacity Plus are led by Johnson Controls Inc, a world leader in supplier diversity, with more than 600 diverse suppliers and $1.8 billion in diverse spend. 

  • Corporate Members: The annual cost for Benchmarking Plus is $999. The registration fee includes access to all webinars, featured courses, online & onsite classes. If you are interested in signing up, please register for the BENCHMARKING PLUS PLATFORM here.

  • Certified MBEs: The annual cost for Capacity Plus is $499. The registration fee includes access to all webinars, featured courses, online & onsite classes. If you are interested in signing up, please register for the CAPACITY PLUS PLATFORM here.

If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact Mayra Pena at  mayra@smsdc.org or call 915.433.0612. 
2021 Virtual Annual Stakeholders' Meeting
February 25, 2021 
In many ways 2020 was a challenging year for most of us. The current pandemic affected us in many ways professionally and personally. We quickly pivoted and learned how to do business in the new normal. Join us on February 25th as we discuss the challenges faced in 2020 and plan for a better 2021. 

This virtual meeting, sponsored by Toyota, will give you an opportunity to get to know SMSDC's Board of Directors, Leadership, Staff, Corporate Members and Certified MBEs.

Attend the virtual Corporate & MBE Plus+ Program classes: Benchmarking Plus & Capacity Plus, led by Reginald K. Layton, VP Supplier Diversity & Supply Chain Sustainability - Johnson Controls Inc and Chairman of SMSDC.

The VIRTUAL annual meeting will take place on Thursday, February 25th via Zoom Webinar/Meeting.

2020 Year in Review
Introduction of the State of the Council/Network
2021 Goals & Services

2021 MBE "IDOL" Kickoff
USMCA PART II Presentation
Benchmarking Plus - Corporate Class
Capacity Plus - Certified MBE Class

Virtual Networking Reception

Access to SMSDC's past virtual events, please click on the link below or visit www.smsdc.org, click on events and scroll to the bottom of the webpage.

Have a recent achievement or new development in your organization? We'd love to share your story too! Click the "SHARE YOUR STORY"link below to leave your name and contact information and we'll reach out to you.