Turner Construction Company’s Chicago office recently held a graduation ceremony for 48 graduates of the firm’s Turner School of Construction Management Program for minority and women-owned business enterprises (M/WBEs). Sponsors of the program this year included, Exelon Corporation, Roosevelt University’s Marshall Bennett Institute of Real Estate, The City of Chicago’s Department of Procurement, and endorsements from the Chicago Minority Business Development Council, Westwood College, the Women’s Business Development Center, The Federation of Women Contractors, and the U.S. Green Building Council.
“Another successful year of making a significant impact to the minority and women owned business community. We are very proud of our 48 graduates as well as the time and effort dedicated by the Turner staff in organizing, supporting and teaching the program,” said Rick Blair, General Manager of Turner’s Chicago and Indianapolis operations.
The free, seven-week training program has been a key resource in Chicago for more than 1,000 MWBE business owners over the last 24 years. The program provides insightful and meaningful tools to local woman-and minority-owned businesses, while offering them an opportunity to develop strategic business skills. The Turner School of Construction Management is designed to provide these contractors with the tools necessary to pursue work in the private and public sectors. Participants learn
the essentials of managing a business, including how to develop, estimate, and bid a large job, obtain bonding, enforce safety principles and establish and manage credit, in order to become better equipped to compete for progressively larger contracts. One goal of the program is to develop a pool of minority contractors with the necessary skills to perform work on future Turner projects. Attendees also have the opportunity to network with peers, instructors and others in the construction industry during the training program.
“The Turner Construction School of Management Program equipped Azteca Power Construction with the tools and strategies to grow within the construction industry. The Turner instructors brought years of expertise and proven effective construction methods to stay on the clear path of success,” stated Samuel Enriquez, Jr. of Azteca Power Construction, Inc., a minority-owned business participant.
The Turner Construction School of Management Program has been crucial in helping Turner achieve success in awarding over 60,600 contracts with a value in excess of $20.5 billion to minority- and women-owned business enterprises (M/WBEs) since 1979. In addition, 2011 marked the seventh consecutive year that Turner awarded more than one billion dollars of contracts to M/WBE firms.