|Charles Harmon, Board Chair
Senior Manager, Administration Division
American Honda Motor Co., Inc.
Charles A. Harmon is the Senior Manager of Corporate Procurement and Corporate Services for American Honda Motor Co., Inc. In his role as the company’s procurement officer, Harmon exercises total administrative responsibility in directing more than $3 billion of American Honda’s corporate spend to include oversight of all corporate purchasing operating activities including strategic planning, establishment of purchasing systems, financial planning, financial management, and administration in the assignment of responsibility for the procurement of goods, commodities and services. Harmon also continues to lead American Honda’s efforts to develop a diverse supply chain through his board appointments on the Institute of Supply Management – Supplier Diversity Group, Southern California Minority Supplier Development Council and the Orange County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, as well as active participation in organizations such as the Greater Los Angeles African American Chamber of Commerce, American Indian Chamber of Commerce of California, Asian Business Association, The Latino Coalition and NMSDC.
|Mario Munoz, Vice Chair
Staff VP, Procurement and Accounts Payable
Mario joined Anthem (formerly WellPoint) in 2003. During his time at WellPoint Mario has had various roles including Sourcing Manager, Sourcing Director and most recently Procurement Operations and Accounts Payable Staff Vice President. In his current position Mario is responsible for Procurement Operations, Contracts Management, Procurement Technology, Analytics and Accounts Payable for the enterprise. Prior to WellPoint Mario was a manager at Accenture’s supply chain practice where he led Procurement engagements for clients in various industries including pharmaceutical, entertainment, healthcare, finance, and consumer goods. Before joining Accenture Mario worked for Southern California Edison where he was part of the Executive Development Program and had roles in the Procurement department and the Marketing team. Mario is a board member of the Southern California Minority Supplier Development Council and a member of the Ariba Technology Advisory Council.
|Joe Chow, Treasurer
Supplier Diversity Manager
Southern California Gas Company
Long before Joe Chow began his career in supplier diversity, he was a certified public accountant performing financial audits, planning and analysis for such companies as General Motors and Pacific Enterprises (now Sempra Energy), former parent company of Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas). Today, his financial background serves him well as SoCalGas’ supplier programs excellence manager. “Understanding the financials is the foundation of any business and helps me tremendously in dealing with diverse businesses and understanding the challenges they face,” says Chow, who has worked in the utility’s supplier diversity group for eight years. He oversees SoCalGas’ Supplier Diversity Program and the nine-member supplier diversity, supply chain sustainability and supplier relationship management team to support and engage key suppliers and diverse suppliers to do more business with SoCalGas. Over the years, the supplier diversity group has successfully implemented programs targeting outreach to these firms, collaborated with business and community organizations to identify qualified suppliers and helped diverse firms develop skills to take on larger business opportunities at SoCalGas. In 2015, SoCalGas spent 44.7 percent of its total purchases with woman-, minority- and service disabled veteran, lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender business enterprises. It was the fourth straight year the utility exceeded the 40 percent mark. The company’s supplier diversity accomplishments have been recognized by a number of national and local organizations, such as the SCMSDC, GLAAACC, LBA, ABA and others. Joe is a native from the state of Kansas where he attended high school and college. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from St. Mary’s University and holds a CPA certification in the state of Kansas.
Southern California Minority Supplier Development Council
Virginia Gomez is president of Southern California Minority Supplier Development Council (SCMSDC), the largest nonprofit minority business advocacy organization in the region. She was appointed to this position in February 2012. As president, Gomez is responsible for leading council activities to strengthen its position as the premiere organization strengthening economic ties between large, public-, private- and foreign-owned corporations and minority men- and women-owned business enterprises. This includes directing such activities as nationally recognized certification to minority-owned businesses, strategic networking between corporate members and certified firms, and education, information, and skills development to help minority businesses enhance their capacity. She previously served as SCMSDC vice president, where she assisted the council president in the organization’s day-to-day operations, including information technology, certification, and annual major events functions and supported council board committees. Prior to joining the council in 2001, she held several management positions at the City of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (DWP), the nation’s largest municipally owned utility. Her experience at the utility included directing and overseeing contracting policies, budgetary, human resources, systems development/automation, and other administrative functions. As DWP contract compliance officer, she successfully led the development and implementation of the first supply chain management e-procurement system implemented among Los Angeles’ municipal agencies.
Blackstone Consulting, Inc.
A successful minority business entrepreneur and a new member of SCMSDC’s board of directors, Joe Blackstone is in a unique position to help guide the council’s activities to ensure its place as the preeminent minority business advocacy organization in Southern California. In 1991, Blackstone founded Blackstone Consulting Inc. (BCI), which has grown into a multi-million dollar service company in various service sectors. The Los Angeles-based company provides food, janitorial, facilities maintenance, security, staffing, and grounds and maintenance services. BCI employs people in 16 states and Germany, and has contracts with Sodexo USA, Northrop Grumman Corporation, government agencies, and more. In addition, BCI is a Corporate Plus member of the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC), a membership program for minority businesses with proven capability for national contracts. Blackstone received a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from USC and an MBA from Southern Methodist University. He completed the Board of Directors Training with a certificate from the UCLA Anderson Business School and previously served on several boards, including USC Board of Governors, Los Angeles County Private Industry Council Board and was a member of Big Brothers of Greater Los Angeles.
Sector Manager, Global Supplier Diversity Programs & Government Relations, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems
Northrop Grumman Corporation Aerospace Systems
Vicky Harper-Hall manages the strategically important small business and socio-economic business programs for Northrop Grumman’s Aerospace Systems sector. In this position, she oversees all aspects of sector programs related to small, small disadvantaged, women-owned, historically underutilized, veteran-owned and service-disabled veteran-owned small business, and historically black colleges/universities and minority institutions programs. As part of helping ensure Northrop Grumman’s competitive position in the defense industry, Harper-Hall also guides the company’s work in surveying and assessing potential small business partners, and works to increase those partners’ participation in government and commercial contracts. Harper-Hall also provides guidance to small business liaison officers at Integrated Systems sites, maintains U.S. government customer approval of the small business program and master subcontracting plan, and executes procedures to ensure compliance with federal, state and corporate laws that govern the administration of the programs.
VP of International Operations and Business Development
Technology Integration Group (TIG)
Ying McGuire is the Vice President of International Operations and Business Development at Technology Integration Group (TIG), a premier minority owned IT products, solutions and services provider based in San Diego, California with 24 offices in US, China, and a global partner network. In this role, she oversees TIG’s existing international operations and expansion of global business. She also leads TIG’s corporate business development and supplier diversity initiative. Prior to TIG, Ying was the Global Supplier Diversity Officer at Dell Inc. She was responsible for driving three billion dollar procurement spend with diverse suppliers and she was a leading voice in the supplier diversity industry. Ying holds a variety of community leadership role. She serves on an advisory board of the International Trade Center, a United Nation agency based in Switzerland, and is currently a board member of the Greater Austin Asian Chamber of Commerce. She also served as the board chair of the Southwest Minority Supplier Development Council in Texas, a global committee member of the Woman Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), an International Committee member of the National Minority Supplier Development council (NMSDC), and a board member of the Billion Dollar Round Table. DiversityBusiness.com named Ying as an “America’s Top Diversity Advocate”. Minority Business USA recognized Ying as one of its “Best of The Decade”. DiversityPlus Magazine named Ying as a “Champion of Diversity”.
Supplier Diversity Liaison Officer
Jinus Moghbeli joined Amgen in 2003 as Senior Manager, Corporate Quality Systems, and was responsible for development and deployment of a global “Quality Management System” program. She also directed disposition and distribution of clinical and commercial products, overseeing the release of products at all Amgen sites. In 2007, she joined Global Strategic Sourcing and has worked in several different capacities, including managing the purification category (including resins and filters), design/ development of Supplier Relationship Management (SRM), responsibility for a sourcing Integration Management Office for mergers and acquisitions, and most recently taken on the role of Amgen’s Supplier Diversity Liaison Officer. Prior to joining Amgen, Jinus held a variety of progressive leadership roles at Baxter International. Directing Quality organization for material, plasma, fractionation and final product release was her last position at Baxter. She has a Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology from Towson State University, and MBA training from University of Baltimore. She is trained in Six Sigma (Black belt) and Quality Management and Process Consulting (Kepner -Tregoe).
Vice President of Community and Citizenship
Turner Construction Company
Michelle Smith-Ballard has 35 years of construction experience with the past fourteen years spent developing, administering, and monitoring diversity and small, minority, woman owned and disadvantaged business programs. She joined Turner in 1988 as a project accountant in the Los Angeles office where of her duties included reporting dollars spent with minority/women owned and disadvantaged businesses. In 1999, Michelle left Turner and joined Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG) where, for a short time, she served as construction project analyst. After developing and presenting a comprehensive supplier diversity plan with an emphasis on increased spending with MBE/WBE/DBEs, Michelle was promoted as AEG’s Director of Procurement Equity and Supplier Diversity and remained in that capacity until 2007. Michelle rejoined Turner in February 2008 as Director of Community Affairs (now known as Community and Citizenship). She is responsible for administering Turner’s aggressive program which includes labor compliance, outreach, and MBE/WBE/DBE spend monitoring to ensure Turner’s 20% corporate goal is met in the Southern California business unit. Michelle coordinates and manages Turner School of Construction Management, an intense 7 week/ 15 session course that teaches MBE/WBE/DBE firms all aspects of construction. She also oversees Turner So Cal’s community involvement such as Youth Force 20/20, a national Turner program that seeks to inform and excite middle and high school students about the many careers in construction. This program administers Principal-for-a-Day, career days, the national program ACE Mentoring, and the Los Angeles Construction Career Awareness Day.
Director, Strategic Sourcing
Disney Worldwide Services
Michael Cooper is the Director of Strategic Sourcing for Disney Worldwide Services, supporting Disney’s Theme Parks and Resorts Segment. Michael leads a Sourcing & Procurement team consisting of 22 professional Cast Members in various roles primarily supporting the Disneyland Resort, The Walt Disney World Resort and related Disney segments in the areas of Facilities & Operations Services, Maintenance & Engineering, Food & Beverage, Creative Entertainment and Supplier Diversity. Michael joined the Disneyland Resort team as the Manager of Food & Beverage Sourcing & Procurement in May 2004. In 2005, Michael’s responsibilities were expanded to encompass the sourcing support for Marketing and Entertainment. Michael was assigned to his current role in 2006, where he and his team are responsible for contributing to profitability by initiating cost reduction initiatives, driving supplier innovation through partnering and protecting and enhancing the Disney brand. Michael and his team emphasize achieving these objectives by building a diverse supplier base and ensuring an inclusive environment throughout the supplier selection process. Michael actively participates in various supplier matchmaking events in the community, and has been recognized as Corporate Diversity Advocate of the Year by the Asian Business Assn. of Orange County. Prior to joining Disney, Michael held various positions in Strategic Sourcing, Manufacturing and Human Resources for divisions of Nestlé, Heinz and Kraft at locations throughout the United States. A native of Pittsburgh, Michael earned Bachelors of Science Degrees in Management and Finance from the University of Utah. Michael currently serves on the boards of the Cypress College Foundation and the Orange County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and has formerly served on the boards of United Cerebral Palsy of Utah and the Tea Association of the United States.
Principal Manager of Supplier Diversity and Development
Southern California Edison Co.
Frierson Southern California Edison Co.’s Supplier Diversity and Development activities, which include supplier development, contract opportunities and targeted outreach. Previously, he was a manager of Supplier Diversity at Bristol-Myers Squibb. Prior to that, he held several positions at SCE, including senior supplier diversity and inclusion consultant, supplier diversity manager, project manager and senior claims representative. His background includes managing all aspects of SCE’s supplier development initiative, from program design to resource management; leading the supplier diversity annual report project and goal planning efforts for the organization; and managing SCE’s relationship with key external stakeholders. Frierson has a bachelor of science degree in corporate and institutional finance from Ball State University, a master’s degree in leadership and management from the University of La Verne and Lean Six Sigma Green Belt certification. He serves on several advisory boards and councils, including chair of Women’s Business Enterprise National Council’s Utility Advisory Council, National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce’s Procurement Corporate Advisory council, and Asian Business Association-Los Angeles’ board.
|Sanjay Kucheria, MBEIC Chair
Sanjay Kucheria is an entrepreneur and executive with over 20 years of experience, including strategy, general management, and business operations. He serves as the CEO of Trinus Corporation, an IT Professional Services firm that specializes in data analytics and financial performance management solutions. The firm has locations in the US and India and serves private sector companies, non-profits and government organizations, including leaders in healthcare, life sciences, entertainment, telecom, manufacturing, ports, utilities and technology. Sanjay is a member of the World Presidents’ Organization (YPO-WPO) and Chair of its Technology Network. He is chair of the Minority Business Enterprise Input Committee as well as member of board of directors of the Southern California Minority Business Development Council. He serves on the USC Viterbi School of Engineering’s Department of Computer Science Advisory Board. Sanjay has also served as President of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) and board member of Society of Information Management (SIM). Sanjay continues to be a regular guest speaker at USC’s Marshall School of Business, and various business conferences. Sanjay has a B.E. degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Bombay and an M.S. degree in Computer Science from the University of Southern California. He has taken executive education courses at Harvard Business School, including the OPM program. Sanjay is married and has two children.
|Bob Carlson, General Counsel
Carlson & Cohen, LLP
Mr. Carlson has been the General Counsel for SCMSDC since its formation in the late 1970’s. He is a graduate of CSUN (B.A.) and the University of LaVerne SFV (J.D.), and is a partner in the Encino law firm of Carlson & Cohen, LLP. His practice emphasis is on Business and Corporate matters, counseling non-profit entities, Real Estate and Estate Planning. He has assisted the Council through the years in all of its legal affairs and was involved in the early formation of the relationship with NMSDC. Mr. Carlson is active in the community and serves as a member of the Board Manager of the North Valley YMCA, was a founder of S.O.L.I.D., a community-based organization which works with the Devonshire division of L.A.P.D., and formally served on the Board of the Organization for the needs of the Elderly.