Meijer donates $300K to support the Midwest’s diverse-owned businesses

The contribution will be divided evenly between six NMSDC affiliate councils that support minority-owned businesses within the retailer's six-state footprint.
Sandra Levy
Senior Editor
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Meijer is expanding its efforts to support minority-owned businesses.

The retailer is donating $300,000 to the National Minority Supplier Development Council as part of its ongoing commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, which will be evenly divided between six NMSDC affiliate councils that support minority-owned businesses within its six-state footprint.

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"Our Supplier Diversity efforts go beyond our current vendor relationships – we want to create a pipeline of opportunity and empowerment that will bolster the success of diverse entrepreneurs across the Midwest for years to come," Meijer president and CEO Rick Keyes, said. "That's why we value the important work the NMSDC is doing to strengthen minority-owned businesses in our communities and look forward to partnering on our shared goals."

The NMSDC and its affiliate councils advance certified minority-owned businesses by offering education and development programs, networking opportunities and increased visibility and connections to help them grow.

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This donation comes at an important time because, according to the NMSDC, the pandemic continues to take a severe toll on minority-owned businesses, especially because minority communities tend to be impacted most deeply by the economic recession.

"Supporting minority-owned businesses is the right thing to do for our communities and our customers, now more than ever," Carla Hendon, Meijer director of supplier diversity and indirect procurement, said. "It's exciting to know that the businesses we're helping through this donation could grow to become our vendor partners."

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The retailer's donation will be divided between the following NMSDC affiliate councils, benefitting businesses within the retailer's footprint and beyond in alignment with its efforts to identify diverse suppliers. Those receiving the donations include:

  • Chicago MSDC, which serves Metro Chicago and Northwest Indiana;
  • Michigan MSDC;
  • Mid-States MSDC, which serves Indiana (except Northwest Indiana), Central Illinois and Eastern Missouri;
  • North Central MSDC, which serves Iowa, North Dakota, Minnesota, South Dakota and Wisconsin;
  • Ohio MSDC; and
  • TriState MSDC, which serves Kentucky, Tennessee and West Virginia.

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The NMSDC donation is part of the retailer's end-of-year donation efforts, totaling $6.5 million that will support its key areas of giving — hunger relief, diversity and inclusion, and sustainability and local giving.