Women Procurement Assistance Committee (WPAC)
DOT has established a Women's Procurement Assistance Committee (WPAC) through the OSDBU. The purpose of the WPAC is to promote, coordinate and monitor DOT procurement plans and programs towards continued achievement of the five percent procurement goal in its direct contracting activities. The Committee provides forums, workshops and best practices in order to contribute to the growth and economic development of women. In addition, the Committee enhances awareness of women-owned businesses and works to ensure that WOSB are afforded the opportunity to participate as both prime and subcontractors on transportation-related contracts. Contact the OSDBU Women's Business Advocate for more information.
To qualify as a WOB, a small business concern must meet the following two conditions:
At least 51% owned by one or more women, or, in the case of any publicly owned business, at least 51% of the stock of which is owned by one or more women; and
Management and daily business operations are controlled by one or more women.
In 1994, Congress established a government-wide goal that WOBs be awarded at least 5% of the total value of all prime contract and subcontract awards for each fiscal year; however, there are no set-aside procurement programs or incentives for awarding a contract to a WOB.
The federal government does not require any formal certification for women-owned small businesses that are proposing as prime contractors on federal procurements. If a business meets the two conditions stated above, that business can “self-certify.” Should a WOB status be challenged upon procurement award, the procuring agency may request proof of the firms WOB status.
More information about WOB programs can be found on the SBA website at http://www.sba.gov/aboutsba/sbaprograms/onlinewbc/index.html.
Other Women-Owned Business Programs
Report: Women in Business: A Demographic Review of Women's Business Ownership by the Office of Advocacy, Senior Economist, Dr. Ying Lowrey.
For a copy of this study, visit: http://www.sba.gov/advo/research/rs280tot.pdf.
SBA's Office of Women's Ownership (OWBO) is at the forefront of helping women start and build successful businesses. You can learn more about them on the SBA web site at: http://www.sba.gov/about-offices-content/1/2895 .
The U.S. Women's Chamber of Commerce - Guide to Women Contractors http://www.sblink.us/html/uswcc-gov-con-launch.aspx provides one convenient, authenticated source for women-owned firms.