LIFTING UP OUR MINORITY BUSINESSES
TAMPA TALKS is an intra-City forum and idea exchange. This forum was conceived by members of the Mayor’s Staff Advisory Team. The mission of TAMPA TALKS is to provide employees from every City department and discipline with a deeper understanding of how the City of Tampa interacts with the world. It is the Staff Advisory Team’s hope that all forums will provide encouragement, information, and support to City employees in the areas of morale, training, and networking.
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2020 • 11AM - NOON
You're invited to the first virtual Tampa Talks!
Leah is a Tampa native as she has lived here since she was three years old. Leah started her career as an intern with the City of Tampa at the Tampa Convention Center. Upon graduating from Florida State University, she was hired full-time at the Convention Center. After 13 years at the Convention Center, Leah transferred to the Construction Services Department. She has had the privilege of serving the City of Tampa for over 15 years.
Jillian Howard received her Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering (Structural) degree from the University of South Florida in Spring 2007. During her collegiate studies, she began working as a CO-OP with the City of Tampa Water Department, an experience from which she obtained full-time employment within the same department on June 30, 2007 as an Engineer I. In August of 2015, then an Engineer II, she was hired as a Project Coordinator with the Contract Administration Department where she presently serves.
Meet City Experts
Mr. Allen is a veteran public service provider having certified thousands of small and minority businesses throughout the State of Florida. Mr. Allen currently serves as a Business Analyst with the City’s Equal Business Opportunity Office. Ardail’s expertise in the minority and small business development arena spans over 30 years and has provided him with the opportunity to serve on several professional boards and committees.
He is credited as the architect of the City’s first small business enterprise program. Today, the program serves hundreds of business owners throughout Hillsborough, Pasco, Polk, Pinellas and Manatee counties.
This proud father of three successful, young adults hails from the “Windy City” -- Chicago, Illinois. He has a BBA in Finance from the University of Iowa. Mr. Allen is a saxophonist and recording artist, who self-produced his debut album entitled, “Saxtified.”
Kevin Frye has worked for the City of Tampa for 15 years and is currently the Procurement Manager in the City’s Purchasing Department. His section of the Purchasing Department is responsible for centralized oversight of the approvals for purchases of goods and services for all City departments. As part of his duties as Procurement Manager, Kevin works closely with the City’s Equal Business Opportunity (EBO) Office to provide support and guidance to vendors who are interested in doing business with the City including those who are certified, or working to become certified, as Woman/Minority Business Enterprise (WMBE) or Small Local Business Enterprise (SLBE) firms. These efforts include participation in monthly orientation classes for newly certified firms and other events throughout the year that include other governmental agencies and private businesses.
Kevin has earned his professional certifications as a Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB) and Certified Public Procurement Officer (CPPO) with the Universal Public Procurement Certification Council (UPPCC). Kevin has served as a Board Member of the local area Tampa Bay Chapter of the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing (TBAC NIGP) and participates in numerous activities, that include vendor outreach via trade shows and events, with this group of local purchasing/procurement professional and their agencies throughout our local region.
Jim Greiner is a Registered, Professional Engineer. He manages the construction and consulting contracts for the City of Tampa. He was a Church Music Director for 17 years. He's been a chapter president of the Barbershop Harmony Society. He currently sings Lead with the Barbershoppers in Pinellas County. He's a member of the Tri-City Chapter of National AMBUCS, Inc., a Charity providing scholarships for therapists, special tricycles for handicapped children, Grab-Bars for the frail and elderly, Humor Therapy, and helps manage and coordinate other projects, like AMAZE - Applied Magic, the Arts and Zany Entertainment. He has exhibited, and presented at the national convention of the Association for Applied and Therapeutic Humor and at the first Florida session of the World Laughter Tour with Madan Kataria, a Doctor from India promoting “Laughter for No Reason” around the world. He's been a member of the International Brotherhood of Magicians for over 50 years. Since 1970, he has trained hundreds of people to benefit from the vast untapped resources of the human mind. He's conducted Magic, Humor, Creativity, and "How to Practice Safe Whooppee Cushioning" sessions at some important seats of power, corporations, and associations in America.
Hear a Personal Success Story from a Local Small/Minority-Owned Business
Since April of 2008, Ms. Wood-Mark has provided Project Management services in the Commercial, Municipal and Residential Construction industries. As a contractor, her skill set includes representation, estimating, scheduling, engineering design review, data and invoice processing. Ms. Wood-Mark has a Bachelors in BCN – Building Construction from the University of Florida.
Discover Community Partnerships
As the Chief Executive Officer of the Tampa Hillsborough Action Plan (THAP Group), Derrick Blue is leading its mission to create and fuel an economic engine in East Tampa. Since its launch, THAP’s 5508 Business Incubator has become a destination for people throughout Hillsborough and Polk Counties. The 5508 enables freelancers and entrepreneurs to start, grow, and succeed in business. Through various programs, the THAP Group is working to make East Tampa the best place to live, work, and play.