National business league to host annual black supplier conference

"It is critically important to connect Black entrepreneurs with equitable supply chain solutions and commerce-driven opportuniti
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[National Business League]
Ken L. Harris: "At this year's conference, the NBL aims to spark the solution revolution as Black businesses are being severely impacted by the COVID-19 economic crisis and the country's racial unrest."
Photo: Twitter

Focused on COVID-19 economic recovery, the National Business League (NBL) will host its 34th Annual National Black Supplier Conference, an "NBL LIVE Virtual+" experience from 8 am – 3 pm on Wednesday, November 18, 2020.

The organization's first-of-its-kind virtual conference will be sponsored by AMEX, Comerica Bank, DTE, FIAT Chrysler, Flagstar Bank, Ford, GM, Huntington Bank, MPS Group and Toyota, just to name a few. Attendees comprise the nation's top Black suppliers, Fortune 500 corporate partners, and Tier 1-4 companies. Also funding from the CARES ACT was through a grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce Minority Business Development Agency.

In the midst of a global pandemic, the NBL strives to continue its mission serving as the prime Black business-development pipeline for Business-to-Business/Business-to-Consumer (B2B2C) firms, using B2B training eco-systems to measure equitable growth opportunities within the supply chain. This inaugural virtual conference will introduce the Business-to-Development (B2D) ecosystem to the Black supplier community and the corporate procurement community under its four competencies: develop, diversify, connect and advocate.

"It is critically important to connect Black entrepreneurs with equitable supply chain solutions and commerce-driven opportunities," said Ken L. Harris, PhD, President/CEO of the NBL. "At this year's conference, the NBL aims to spark the solution revolution as Black businesses are being severely impacted by the COVID-19 economic crisis and the country's racial unrest."

Some of the country's most influential Black leaders will serve as honorary conference chairs: Adrienne Trimble, President/CEO, National Minority Supplier Development Council, Inc.; Charlie Williams, Chairman, MPS Group; David J. Byrd, National Director, U.S. Department of Commerce Minority Business Development Agency; Rick Wade, Senior Vice President, Strategic Alliances and Outreach, U.S. Chamber of Commerce; and Sharon Patterson, President/CEO, Billion Dollar Roundtable.

NBL Board Chairman Thomas W. Dortch, Jr., says, "The NBL has digitized its efforts to connect the organizations of more than 125 Fortune 500 corporate partners with Black businesses in the supply chain network throughout the country and internationally with themed panels centered on advocacy, diversification, development, and connection."

Power Panel 1: Black Women in Business

  • Natalie King, President/CEO, Dunamis Clean Energy Partners, LLC.
  • Lottie Holland, Director of Talent Acquisition, Diversity, Inclusion & Engagement, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles
  • Wendy Lewis Miller, President/CEO, Superior Innovative Solutions, LLC.

Power Panel 2: Digitizing Black Businesses During COVID-19

  • Katrina Turnbow, Digital Coach, Google
  • Warren Flood, Corporate Affairs Manager, Microsoft
  • Tonya Watson, Head of Global Corporate Procurement Supplier Programs, Amazon

Keynote Speech: "The Future of Supplier Diversity, Equity & Inclusion"

  • Burt Jordan, Retired Executive, Global Purchasing & Supply Chain

Celebrating more than 34 years of driving commerce-driven opportunities for Black suppliers through the global supply chain network, the NBL will offer FREE admission to the largest Black supplier event in the U.S. and internationally and waive the conference fee due to the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on Black businesses across the country. Tier I-IV Black suppliers and expected 100 or more Fortune 500 purchasing and supply chain companies that are ready to engage opportunities in the marketplace will attend the conference.

Opportunities for increased exposure, promotion, and engagement are benefits associated with becoming a sponsor of the 2020 National Black Supplier Conference. To become a corporate sponsor/exhibitor or register for the FREE virtual conference, visit today.

About the 34th Annual National Black Supplier Conference's NBL LIVE Virtual+ Experience

For more than 34 years, the NBL has served the national Black supplier and diversity community. In 1986, the National Association of Black Suppliers (NABS), formerly known as the National Association of Black Automotive Suppliers (NABAS), was formed by a group of Black business owners whose largest customers were automotive manufacturers listed in Black Enterprise Magazine's Top 100. In 2012, the NABS merged with the Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce, which in 2017 merged with the NBL to accommodate the organization's expanded national mission and purpose to include suppliers in other industries and service sectors globally. The NBL's Black supplier pipeline now encompasses 1,200 members in 50 states, introduces an annual revenue of $6 billion into the national economy, and employs more than 30,000 workers.

About the National Business League, Inc.

Founded on August 23, 1900, by the iconic Booker T. Washington, the NBL is the first and largest nonprofit, non-partisan, and non-sectarian Black business and professional trade association. With more than 120,000 members nationwide, it has regional offices in Atlanta, GA, Detroit, MI, Los Angeles, CA, and Washington, D.C., as well as more than 367 local league chapters across the country. The NBL provides access to 2.6 million Black businesses throughout the United States. Visit

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