The Georgia Minority Supplier Development Council (GMSDC) has partnered with the Greater Macon Chamber of Commerce to share small business development resources, capacity building support and diversity procurement best practices, for the benefit of their mutual constituents. The GMSDC has been the state of Georgia’s leading minority business development and supplier diversity advocacy organization for almost 50 years, facilitating supply chain partnerships between minority owned businesses and the Georgia corporations and governmental entities that need their goods and services. The Macon Chamber is more than 140 years old and serves the business community of Macon-Bibb County with a full slate of programming and initiatives. These organizations support a mutual business community that includes more than 400 corporations and some 2,000 suppliers that contribute billions of dollars to Georgia’s economy every year. The Memorandum of Understanding between the two organizations essentially gives the members of each organization access to the member privileges of the other, to stimulate the growth and development of minority businesses and strengthen the communities they serve.

There are many obstacles to success for small and minority businesses in a still recovering economy. Corporations and governmental entities are seeking to close historic economy gaps and stepping up their efforts to engage and utilize suppliers from traditionally disadvantaged communities. When the GMSDC and the Macon Chamber looked at their programming and membership roles, it became clear that there were many similarities and even some overlap in how they served their constituents.

Stacey Key, Chief Executive Officer and President of the GMSDC, is a longtime advocate of strategic partnerships. “We are in the business of helping small and minority companies succeed,” said Key. “Rather than reinvent the wheel and offer overlapping initiatives, why not collaborate with like-minded organizations, so our constituents have even more resources at their disposal? We must work smarter so we can do more for our mutual constituents.”

Jessica Walden, the President and CEO of the Macon Chamber, sees this partnership as a way for both organizations to enhance their service delivery to their constituents. “By working collaboratively, we are increasing access to opportunities for our business owners, expanding our networks and strengthening our missions,” said Walden. “We are proud to partner with one of Georgia’s most established, pioneering organizations in supplier diversity to enhance and accelerate local business.”