Eva Tang, Golden State Water Company’s (GSWC) Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President of Finance, represented investor-owned water utilities (IOUs) at the California Utilities Diversity Council’s Consulting Services Forum on June 14. The Forum was designed to share best practices, advance a collaborative approach to increase the number of Diverse Business Enterprises (DBEs) included in consulting services and encourage DBEs and consulting firms to partner and subcontract with one another. Participants at the Forum included multi-disciplinary consulting firms, California utilities and DBEs.
After providing an overview of seven of the Class-A IOUs’ supplier diversity procurement activities, Tang outlined several steps GSWC is taking to increase participation with DBEs such as encouraging non-diverse firms to subcontract with DBEs; and requiring all prime contractors to report the level of spending with diversity subcontractors. Among Tang’s recommendations were getting buy-in from top-level management as well as forming a diversity committee and having a full-time diversity manager on staff.