November 15, 2019
Press Releases & News

Clark's Strategic Partnership Program Recognized as Finalist for Best Economic Empowerment Program by U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation has recognized Clark Construction Group’s Strategic Partnership Program as one of four finalists for the “Best Economic Empowerment Program”. The recognition was bestowed during the Chamber’s 2019 Citizens Awards Gala on November 14 in Washington, D.C. The Citizens Awards, which are given in eight categories, recognize the most strategic and innovative corporate citizenship programs from businesses, chambers, and associations of all sizes. The Best Economic Empowerment Program award honors programs that tackle some of society’s biggest challenges. Over the past 20 years, some of the most accomplished social and community initiatives within the business sector have been recognized with this distinction.

“Clark is honored to be recognized by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation for our work to support small businesses nationwide,” said Wesley Stith, Clark’s vice president of procurement who has been instrumental in the program’s founding and growth over the last 13 years. “The Strategic Partnership Program has been a labor of love for our organization. It is incredibly rewarding to witness program graduates leverage the knowledge and skills they’ve gained through the course to take their businesses to the next level, and even more rewarding when we’re able to work alongside them on our construction sites.”

The Strategic Partnership Program is an intensive executive MBA-style course targeted to local small business enterprises including minority-, women-, and veteran-owned firms. Clark developed the program in partnership with Dartmouth College’s Tuck School of Business with the primary goal of growing the capacity of small contractors to enable them to contribute to large-scale construction projects. Nearly 200 small business owners are currently enrolled in Clark’s 2019-20 class nationwide.

The months-long development program is free to small business participants and features a comprehensive curriculum designed to give students a solid foundation for growth. Clark’s building professionals shepherd courses and work alongside outside industry experts to lead in-depth classroom discussions on topics such as finance and accounting, insurance and bonding, project management, contracts, estimating, and purchasing, as well as general business competencies, such as networking and presentation skills. The curriculum is also supplemented by special workshops and extended learning opportunities.

In addition to Clark Construction Group, the finalists recognized for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s “Best Economic Empowerment Program” included Barclays, Kellogg Company, and Sachse Construction.

Learn more about the Citizen Awards program and winners at https://www.uschamberfoundation.org/citizens-awards.