First Baltimore County Chairman To Serve Three Years, Olszewski Signs Executive Order To Raise Minority-and-Women-Owned Business Participation


Credit: Baltimore County Government

BALTIMORE COUNTY - Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski signed an executive order in December to provide county funding to more women-and-minority-owned businesses (MBE, WBE).

This new order updates a 2017 Executive Order, which set an overall goal that 15 percent of total dollars spent on discretional procurements must be awarded to and performed by MBE and WBE firms. Olszewski's order sets a new goal of 30% participation by fiscal year 2026.

"From day one, our administration has been committed to promoting equity across our government, and we remain laser-focused on doing just that," Olszewski said. "While we are proud of the steps we've already taken — and the progress we've made — we know there is much more work to do. With this new goal, we are recommitting to doing even more to expand opportunities for our minority and women entrepreneurs in the years ahead."

The executive order sets an achievable bar for FY 2023, with the county promising that 23 percent of all Baltimore County discretional procurements will be awarded to and performed by MBE and WBE firms by the end of this year.

In recent years, the county has consistently exceeded the current 15 percent goal, including 22 percent in FY22. Since the Olszewski administration took office in December 2018, MBWE spending has increased by nearly 60 percent.

In Olszewski's announcement of this order, he touted the county council's work to make Baltimore County a more equitable place.

"This is the latest effort to expand Baltimore County's commitment to equity in enterprise-wide decision-making, including hiring the County's first chief diversity and inclusion officer, creating a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Community Advisory Council, and forming a Blue Ribbon Panel for Procurement Reform to make recommendations in order to support small, minority-owned and women-owned business enterprises."

The full text of the Executive Order is available here.

History was made last night as Baltimore County Councilman Julian E. Jones was sworn in for his third consecutive year as the council chair.

Jones has been the councilman for Baltimore County's district four since 2014 and initially served as council chair from January 2, 2018, to January 7, 2019. He reclaimed his role as chair in 2021 and has served in the position since.

Jones thanked his community and the county for their continuing support.

"Last night, history was made, as I became the first Baltimore County Councilman in the history of Baltimore County to be selected as Chairman three years in a row and four of the last six years. Special thanks to my council colleagues for unanimously putting their trust in me to serve as the Baltimore County Council Chairman. As your Council Chair, I will continue to work with my colleagues to move Baltimore County in a more prosperous direction."

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