Wednesday, November 1, 2017
5:30 p.m. registration, heavy hors d'oeuvres and cocktails 6:30 p.m. program
The Grand Baltimore 225 North Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21201
GBC member Price: $75.00 individual, $700 block of 10 tickets Non-member price: $115 individual, $900 block of 10 tickets
September 25, 2016 (Baltimore, Maryland) ---Ten successful local minority business owners (MBEs) flew to Nashville Tennesee, courtesy of Southwest Airlines, last week, to explore new business opportunities.
This was the inaugural trip of the Capital Region Minority Supplier Development Council’s first Get on the Plane Business Tour, a program designed to help make minority businesses more profitable through introductions to corporate decisionmakers and MBEs in other parts of the country.
“Relationships and access to decisionmakers are key to business success.” says Sharon R. Pinder, President and CEO, CRMSDC, who created the concept and led the trip. “The more these businesses grow, the greater their economic contribution to our region in terms of both revenue and job creation.”
According to data from the Census Bureau’s Survey of Business Owners, the number of minority businesses increased by about 38% nationally, while the number of non-minority businesses decreased almost 5% between 2007-2012. However, minority owned businesses’ average gross receipts are about 65% less than nonminority businesses.
In 2016, 61% of CRMSDC’s almost 400 MBEs had revenue of more than $1 million (up 5% from 2015). Additionally, 12% have more than 100 employees, and 39% have between 11-100 employees. These suppliers are major drivers of economic development.
Meeting the group in Nashville, were MBEs from the TriState Minority Supplier Development Council. TSMSDC President and CEO, Cheri Henderson, ensured that the participating TSMSDC MBEs’ core capabilities complemented those of the CRMSDC group.
Often, corporations bundle many goods and services into one contract and a single MBE may not be able to meet all the requirements. Meeting other MBEs expands the opportunity for joint ventures.
CRMSDC and TSMSDC are two of 23 regional affiliates of the National Minority Supplier Development Council the only nationally recognized MBE certifying authority. This is the first time two NMSDC affiliates have joined together for an event
Henderson said, “This collaborative effort increased networking and procurement opportunities. It was an ideal chance to meet, greet, and explore mutual procurement and networking opportunities for increased business development. “
The group’s first meeting was with Rob Wigington, President and CEO, Metropolitan Nashville Aviation Authority. The MNAA is seeking minority contractors for their $1.2 billion renovation and expansion project. Wigington invited the group to attend the MNAA Procurement Fair scheduled for the first week in October. Several members of the group intend to return to Nashville for the event and hope to be chosen to participate in this project.
Tony Hill, managing partner of Edwards & Hill Office Furniture, was one of the local minority business owners that made the trip, “The Get on the Plane Business Tour is an amazing idea. It takes an incredible amount of time, money and resources to pursue business in another state. In Nashville, CRMSDC had already identified opportunities that matched our core competencies. Amazing efficiency that simply can't be accomplished by any company on their own."
On Saturday, September 9 2017 at 11am, Bob (an Elder at CCC SDA church) will be guest speaking at Plainfield Seventh Day Adventist Church in Plainfield NH. The talk will be on how to accelerate growth in God's kingdom: the parable of the chinese bamboo tree. See you there!
April 18, 2017- Robert L. Wallace, President and CEO of BITHGROUP Technologies served as the moderator for the Presidents Round Table (PRT) 2017 CEO Briefing. Robert Wallace who is the Chairman of the Board of Directors for PRT, led a discussion along with 4 other panelists on Trumponomics: Accelerating Your Business Growth Under A New Administration.
The discussion explored how Donald Trumps presidency provides opportunities in certain industries and how companies can tap into those opportunities through pivoting their business structure to the changing political landscape.
Hanover, MD- The Hotel at Arundel Preserve graciously provided the space for the event. The panelists were setup on stage where the guests could hear the panelist engaged in the discussion. After the talk was a Q&A to provide the audience to ask how they could better fulfill their capability in their current industry.
On March 8th 2017, Robert L. Wallace received the 2017 Maryland International Business Leadership award from the World Trade Center Institute. The event was held at the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore Maryland and was attended by hundreds of guests and anchor institutions throughout the sate. This renowned award honors leaders who have taken their companies as well as the State of Maryland to new global heights. Wallace accepted the award on behalf of the work performed by BITHGROUP Technologies Inc. and Bithenergy Inc. overseas, in Asia and Africa. International business accounts for over 15% of the current business portfolio and the companies expect to double the revenue over the next two years with emerging opportunities in the Caribbean and various African nations.
A portion of BITH’s profits go to humanitarian efforts to support the overseas construction of churches, clinics, schools, and orphanages. On a local level, BITH proudly supports Baltimore City Schools in their efforts to be more environmentally responsible and seek new technologies in energy and sustainability.
Robert L. Wallace, Chairman of the President’s Roundtable (PRT) and Founder and CEO of BITHGROUP Technologies, Inc. cancelled his scheduled business trip so that he could escort his three granddaughters to see the hit movie, “Hidden Figures.” The blockbuster movie portrays the stellar Black women who pioneered careers at NASA back in the 50s/60s. They were phenomenal and played an integral part of NASA's success. Hidden Figures is the incredible untold story of Katherine G. Johnson (Taraji P. Henson), Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) and Mary Jackson (Janelle Monáe)—brilliant African-American women working at NASA, who served as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history: the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit, a stunning achievement that restored the nation's confidence and completely turned around the Space Race between Russia and the United States. The visionary trio crossed all gender and race lines to inspire generations of young women to dream big and to not take no for an answer.
Mr. Wallace was pleasantly surprised to see the empowering and positive reaction that the show had on his granddaughters. He states, “I have never seen my grandchildren so moved by a movie before. They were mesmerized by how these three African American female heroes endured and overcame the sexism and racism that they confronted in their pursuit of careers in engineering and science. At that moment, I thought to myself, “we need to find a way for all black girls in the Baltimore City School System to see this movie!””
It turned out that Mr. Wallace and the PRT were not the only ones who realized the positive influencing power the movie could have on young black girls. Thanks to Mr. Arnold Williams, partner in the Baltimore based accounting firm, Abrams, Foster, Noel, and Williams and himself a member of the PRT, the group was able to partner with an empowering organization called, Black Girls Vote (BGV) to develop an initiative where more than 425 black girls from the Baltimore School System would enjoy an all-expense paid viewing of the movie, “Hidden Figures.” Whiting-Turner, in conjunction with Exelon also saw the value and helped sponsor the wildly successful outing, which took place on February 19th at the Senator Movie Theatre.
Mr. Wallace provided some context for why this outing was so important. According to Robert, “The United States continues to lag behind China and India in the production of young engineers and scientists. The shortage has become so acute that it is negatively impacting American businesses (including my two companies – BITHGROUP Technologies, Inc. and Bithenergy) and consequently our global competitiveness. “To help close this gap The President's Roundtable (PRT), Black Girls Vote (BGV), Exelon, and Whiting-Turner stepped up to ensure that women and people of color are encouragedto pursue careers in science, engineering, and technology. Of particular interest and focus is the development and education of women of color, since they have historically been woefully underrepresented in these game-changing and life altering fields of endeavor.”
The PRT has historically been committed to providing scholarships, mentoring, and internships to promising young African-American students who are interested in the pursuit of technical education and a host of different degrees.
Robert further states, “The PRT did not want the fact that a young person did not have money for a ticket and/or transportation to be an impediment to them missing this educational experience, so by working with BGV, Exelon, and Whiting-Turner, we were able to purchase movie tickets for close to 500 students, pay for the buses to get them there, create a learning environment for them outside of the classroom, and provide meals for these special young women."
It turned out that Mr. Wallace’s vision was realized as he and other PRT members who stayed to watch the movie with the girls and then had a panel discussion afterwards, observed the young girl’s positive reaction to the movie. “It was like déjà vu all over again. These hundreds of girls exhibited the exact same reaction that my granddaughters did weeks earlier. As we loaded the young ladies onto their buses to return to school, I whispered to myself, mission accomplished. Thank you Lord!,” a satisfied Robert Wallace shared.
Who is this person?
Christopher J. Williams is Chairman, CEO and founder of The Williams Capital Group, L.P. and Williams Capital Management, LLC. A 1984 graduate of the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College, Williams began his career on Wall Street working for Lehman Brothers where he assumed senior management responsibilities in debt capital markets, over the counter derivatives, and taxable fixed income trading. Chris later left Lehman Brothers and formed a derivatives division of Jefferies & Company before he ultimately started the Williams Capital Group, L.P. in 1994. He is a proud and dedicated husband and father of two lovely children and a very visible member of the New York City society.
Why does he inspire me?
There are many reasons why Christopher Williams inspires me but the most top-of-mind reasons are his tenacity, his brilliance, and his generosity. As my classmate at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth, Chris showed that he had the courage and vision to do what few people of color thought to do at that time and that was to start an investment banking firm on Wall Street and to actually compete with the titans who had dominated the financial markets for centuries. Once he made the commitment to start his firm he quickly moved to leverage his extensive experience in the fixed income, equity, and derivatives markets to direct the firm’s strategic efforts in investment banking and asset management. Both Fortune magazine and Crain’s New York Business have recognized Mr. Williams for his leadership in the financial services industry. To see my classmate and friend chase his dream and make it real, is both uplifting and motivating to me and my family.
What can we all learn from this man?
Christopher J. Williams has successfully modeled for our community the power and the opportunity of the convergence of high morals, new economy innovation, entrepreneurship, and “financial engineering.” Mr. Williams has successfully lived out the old adage, “Do well and do good.” Throughout his career and despite his impressive financial success, Chris has mentored and provided professional opportunities to a host of young people who dream of making their success on Wall Street and following in the steps of Christopher J. Williams. Not only has he help nurture young professionals in their financial careers but he has often paved a path and navigated the way for women and minority entrepreneurs, who are striving to tap into the Wall Street storehouse of capital to grow their businesses. He is generous with his time, his financial blessings, and his unwavering commitment to humanity. As a country and as a community, we are blessed to have Christopher J. Williams as one of our leading financial minds.
This month our country celebrates Black History Month. Rather than praise the same leaders and trailblazers we have all heard of and know well, I want to lift up my own minority heros. My first hero for Black History Month is Mr. Robert F. Smith.
Who is this person?
Robert Frederick Smith is an entrepreneur, business leader, investor, and is chairman and CEO of Vista Equity Partners, an investment firm with over $26 billion in assets as of September 2016. Mr. Smith was ranked by Forbes in 2016 as the 274th richest person in America, the second wealthiest African American on the list after Oprah Winfrey. Robert was the second largest donor for the recently opened African American Museum of History in Washington D.C.
Why does he inspire me?
Mr. Smith started from humble middle-class beginnings in a neighborhood in Denver, Colorado. Although he was the son of two parents with PhDs, both parents chose careers as school teachers which meant that they committed their God-given gifts to teaching young people at the expense of more lucrative professional pursuits. Despite the challenges of classism and inherent racism, Mr. Smith was undeterred in his relentless pursuit of his education (Chemical Engineering at Cornell and MBA from Columbia) and his mastering of the art of finance and deal making with Goldman Sachs. He went were few have gone and learned the ways and means of capitalists. Although he has achieved enormous wealth, I sense that he follows the biblical adage that, “to whom much is given, much is required.”
What can we all learn from this man?
Robert F. Smith has shown through his success that the creative and innovative intersection of technology and well-thought out business models can still result in the creation of significant wealth and is often the basis for the development of sustainable economic ecosystems that can benefit all sectors of our society. All young and emerging entrepreneurs should consider treading the path that Mr. Smith has engineered.
Dr. Robert Wallace is speaking at Morgan State Universit School of Business, on Thursday January 19, 2017. The topic will be "Seven Steps to Thrive Economically Under a Trump Administration" and is sponsored by The President's Roundtable (PRT) and Baltimore Afro American Newspaper.
This is a free event and is open to the public, register below to claim your spot!
Robert Wallace explores the notion that you should live every day like it is your last. He introduces three aspects that we all must focus on daily. #1 Intensity of Purpose, #2 Intensity of Preserving, and #3 Intensity of Perspective
In June of 1966, Senator Robert Kennedy visited South Africa at a time when that nation was experiencing major unrest over the system of racial segregation known as apartheid. Kennedy decided to visit upon the invitation of NUSAS, the anti-Apartheid National Union of South African Students. Senator Kennedy arrived to deliver the Annual Day of Affirmation Speech at the University of Cape Town. Senator Kennedy’s journey to South Africa was enormously important both symbolically and practically. As the Civil Rights Movement continued to gain momentum in the United States, Senator Kennedy drew powerful parallels between the systems of racial inequality in both nations. Yet he also urged the possibility of transformation, and took note of the many strides taken by communities in both nations intent upon building a more just society.
Although Senator Kennedy offered up numerous oratorical gems during his visit, his most well-known speech was delivered at the University of Cape Town on June 6th, 1966. Known as the “Ripple of Hope” speech, this address is remembered as one of the most significant and powerful speeches of the 20th century. In this speech he said;
"Few will have the greatness to bend history itself, but each of us can work to change a small portion of events, and in the total of all those acts will be written the history of this generation. Thousands of Peace Corps volunteers are making a difference in isolated villages and city slums in dozens of countries. Thousands of unknown men and women in Europe resisted the occupation of the Nazis and many died, but all added to the ultimate strength and freedom of their countries. It is from numberless diverse acts of courage and belief that human history is shaped. Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring those ripples build a current which can sweep down the mightiest walls
of oppression and resistance.”
While there are many nuggets wisdom that can be gleaned from Senator Kennedy’s speech there are three points that provide great guidance on life and business:
1) Every world citizen is endowed by God with essential freedoms and human rights that no man can absolutely take away.
2) Every action that we take – whether it be big or small – matters and has impact on people and systems.
3) Small individual efforts, when combined with other small individual efforts that are focused on achieving a worthy objective have the power to alter the course of human history.
On June 15, 2016 Dr. Robert L. Wallace was awarded the "Unsung Hero Award" at Small Business Association's Award Ceremony Luncheon. He received the award due to his unique approach to addressing economic hardships that loomed ahead of BITHGROUP Technologies during the crash of 2008. Wallace was able to shift focus to new ventures, rather than lay off employees. This dynamic idea gave birth to Bithenergy, now one of Baltimore's leading Renewable Energy Companies. Below is an excerpt from the letter to the Small Business Association, nominating Wallace for the award.
Since I began my tenure in 2004 I have watched Mr. Wallace lead our company and other small business leaders through many storms. Wallace is consistently ahead of the curve. In difficult times when other small businesses faith is failing he has a knack for knowing the precise moment to turn the corner and point our company into a new and exciting direction. He calls it a “pivot point”.
When the U.S. economy began to spiral fear struck a lot of small businesses. Our phones began to ring off the hook from small business owners seeking wisdom and guidance from Mr. Wallace. Robert encouraged each and every business owner to ride out the storm. He inspired them to find their niche, stay focused, and operate in excellence. Our company was not exempt. We were faced with some of the same issues as the other small businesses, however, Robert pivoted and introduced new lines of business in the areas of energy and biometrics to our team. Both areas of business proved to be very lucrative not only for our company but for the community in the area of job creation.
On Friday, June 3, 2016, Founder and Chief Operating Officer Robert L. Wallace of BITHGROUP Technologies received the Joseph Tyler Award from the National Technical Association in recognition for his lifelong contributions to expanding the opportunities of minorities and minority youth in the technology arena. Dr. Wallace also delivered the key note speech entitled "Technology Entrepreneurship: The Key to Power" which focused on informing youth how they can better prepare themselves to leverage technology and the entrepreneurial spirit to participate in the global economy. BITHGROUP actively works with minority youth annually through sponsoring internships to high school and collegiate students.
The National Technical Association, Inc. was established in 1926. Its purpose was to create a medium for expressing minority professional concerns for the lack of minority participation in the mainstream of architectural and engineering activity in America.
Today this goal has not changed, but has expanded to include a major concern for the participation of minority youth in meeting the challenge of modern technology. Also for youth who have dropped from the challenge, NTA encourages them to seek allied programs to suit their interest and needs.
NTA architectural, engineering and scientific membership volunteers its services nationally to assist public institutions in identifying potential minority technical talent. Public Institutions where the service is encouraged includes high schools, colleges and in the recent past, penal institutions. NTA has spent the ensuing years gaining nation attention through its programs of encouragement to students and professionals alike. The organization has enlarged its goals beyond just gaining economic recognition to include making minority youth aware of the opportunities being made available to them.
Dr. Wallace spoke at the US News & World Report STEM Conference yesterday in Baltimore, MD. He was a panelist along with Diane Bell-McKoy, President and CEO, Associated Black Charities, M.Jason Brooke, Chief Executive Officer and General Counsel of Vasoptic Medical, Donald C. Fry, president and Chief Executive Officer of Greater Baltimore Committee, Karl Gumtow, Chief Executive Officer of Cyber point International, and Jeff Salkin (serving as the Moderator) from Maryland Public Television news Anchor.
The topic of the conference was- INDUSTRY OUTLOOK: EXPLORING Tomorrow's Job and Skills.
When Mr. Salkin asked: "What would you tell the educational institutions about the skills of their graduates?"
Dr. Wallace passionately responded that they need to teach to the future. "Don't teach to the past of the present. They need to teach the students to be prepared for where the jobs are going to be. Engineering schools need teach engineering students how to be entrepreneurs."
Dr. Robert Wallace is inducted into Baltimore Washington Corridor Chamber’s Business Hall of Fame. His induction, celebrated during the BWCC’s Annual Meeting in Linthicum, Maryland May 11, 2016, received a standing ovation.
The keynote speaker, Christopher Crane, President and CEO of the Exelon Corporation provided an outlook on the market sector and Exelon’s initiatives. Additional speakers include Freeman Hrabowski and Ronald R. Peterson. Other award recipients are Major F. Riddick, Jr. and The Berman Family.
Robert L. Wallace
2016 Joseph S. Tyler Jr. Award Winner
The National Technical Association
Baltimore Chapter - www.NTAOnline.org
Invites you to attend their 36th Annual
Joseph S. Tyler, Jr Scholarship and Awards Banquet
Theme: Preparing Technical Leaders for the New Global Economy
Friday, June 3, 2016 * 6:30 - 9:00 p.m.
Networking Social: 6:30-7:00 p.m. Dinner: 7 :00 p.m.
4210 Primrose Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21215
32nd Annual MD Small Business Week Awards
Wednesday, June 15, 2016 11:00 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.