Women- and Minority-Owned Businesses

The City's commitment to communities we serve is to include Women- and Minority-owned Businesses (WMBEs) in our contracts. Each City department establishes plans and goals for WMBE inclusion in projects.

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City's WMBE Definition

WMBE firms need not be state certified to meet the City's WMBE definition. The City defines WMBE firms as at least 51 percent owned by women and/or minority. To be recognized as a WMBE, register on the City's Online Business Directory. Federally funded transportation projects require a Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBE) program; for that program, firms must be certified by the Washington State Office of Minority and Women Business Enterprises (OMWBE).

WMBE Inclusion Plans

The City requires WMBE Inclusion Plans for most projects. The following forms must be completed by the prime bidder as a condition of responsiveness for bidding for projects above $280,000:

Technical Assistance

Lily Keefe of the federal Department of Transportation Small Business Transportation Resource Center (SBTRC) will offer techincal assistance on Tuesdays and Fridays on the 41st floor of the Seattle Municipal Tower. Please contact her at 206-718-7250 or lilyk@economicalliancesc.org to schedule an appointment. Drop-ins are also welcome. Learn more here.

WMBE Experts

Bidders must name a WMBE expert for projects estimated at or above $2 million.

Contact Forrest Gillette, Senior Strategic Advisor for WMBE Equity, for a list of available experts in construction WMBE recruitment services.

WMBE Frequently Asked Questions

I need a subcontract team. How can I connect with WMBE firms?

When seeking subcontract teams including women or minority-owned firms, search the City's Online Business Directory.

Search the Office of Minority Women Business Enterprises Directory, the online list of certified W/M/DBE firms, or call OMWBE at 866-208-1064.

I self-identified as a WMBE in the City’s Online Business Directory. What next?

Are you a vendor for goods and services? Contact City Purchasing to learn of blanket contracts, bidding opportunities and networking events with City departments.

Are you a consultant? Apply for the City Consultant Roster. The City uses this roster to select firms for many projects under $277,000. This roster has a small business criteria for certain categories of work.

Are you a Certified Disadvantaged Business Enterprises firm? Apply for Federal DBE Certification. The City uses this certification list for federally funded projects.

For information about City opportunities contact:

Opportunities on Large Public Works Projects

Large, High-Profile Construction Projects

For all public works projects the City has centralized construction contracting within the City Purchasing and Contracting Services Division. Our office provides the rules, policies, process and directions, as well as manages the bidding and contracting process. Below find links to information on individual large, high-profile projects.