Governor Laura Kelly Honors Kansas Minority- and Women-Owned Businesses For Economic Contributions, Opportunities

Oct 20, 2021

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TOPEKA – Governor Laura Kelly today honored minority- and woman-owned businesses and others who help them achieve success as part of Kansas Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week.

“I am impressed by the outstanding accomplishments and contributions of our state’s minority- and women-owned companies honored today,” Governor Kelly said. “When women and minority-owned businesses succeed, everyone succeeds: our economy, our communities, and our state. This week and every week, my administration will search for opportunities to support them reaching their full potential.”

The Kansas Department of Commerce’s Office of Minority and Women Business Development hosted its 36th Annual Minority and Women Business Awards Luncheon Wednesday, Oct. 20, at the Capitol Plaza Hotel in Topeka. The event highlighting Kansas Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week recognized 12 minority- and woman-owned companies, three individuals and one corporation from across the state for their support and efforts to create new opportunities.

“Minority- and woman-owned businesses are an integral part of the Kansas economy,” Lieutenant Governor and Commerce Secretary David Toland said. “We greatly value the contributions these businesses and advocates provide to our state, from the jobs they create to the way they enrich communities and lives. We owe them all our sincerest praise and support for keeping our economy strong and vibrant, particularly through the economic challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

MED Week is celebrated nationally to recognize the more than 9.2 million minority business enterprises that support the U.S. economy and generate over $1.8 trillion in revenue. The Kansas Department of Commerce’s Office of Minority and Women Business Development holds this annual luncheon to recognize economic contributions of woman- and minority-owned businesses and communities around our state.

Today, minority- and woman-owned businesses have a major economic impact that translates into the creation and maintenance of jobs. These jobs not only sustain the individual worker, but contribute to the economic security of their families, the economic vitality of their communities and of the nation.

“MED Week is a time to spotlight so many outstanding achievements in Kansas, and also showcase the resources available to Kansans who are already in business, or considering a new venture,” Office of Minority and Women Business Development Director Rhonda Harris said. “It’s important that we recognize these efforts during MED Week and every week.”

The Office of Minority and Women Business Development also certifies businesses with designations of Minority Business Enterprise (MBE), Woman Business Enterprise (WBE) and Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE). Companies certified receive preferential selection for public and private contracts and for business-related financial assistance programs. MBE, WBE and DBEs can also participate in business education workshops and seminars through the office. To learn more, visit Office of Minority and Women Business Development.

Companies being recognized during the MED Week celebration include:

Woman-Owned Businesses

Construction Firm
Universal Construction Company, Inc.
Kansas City

Manufacturing Firm
Thimesch Enterprises, LLC dba BEPC
Wichita

Professional Service Firm
LimeLight Marketing
Pittsburg

Retail Firm
Reese’s Enterprises, Inc.
Ulysses

Service Industry Firm
Onyx Salon, Spa and Wellness Cafe
Topeka

Supplier/Distributor Firm
N’Credibly Sweet, LLC
Andover

Minority-Owned Businesses

Construction Firm
Blue Bear, Inc.
Shawnee

Manufacturing Firm
Natural Choice Company
St. Mary’s

Professional Service Firm
CJD Consulting Solutions, LLC
Junction City

Retail Firm
Reliant Apparel, LLC
Topeka

Service Industry Firm
Maze Freight Solutions, Inc.
Overland Park 

Supplier/Distributor Firm
Mid Star Lab, Inc.
Tonganoxie

Young Entrepreneur
Nelson McConnell
Nelson’s Flavorades, LLC
Kansas City

Minority Business Advocate
Sheila Ellis-Glasper
SEG Media Collective, LLC
Manhattan

Women Business Advocate
Sheri Berger
Here To There Consulting
Shawnee

Corporation of the Year
Kiewit Energy Group
Lenexa

The below photos from today’s event are available for media use:

https://governor.kansas.gov/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/MED6.jpg

https://governor.kansas.gov/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/MED1.jpg