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State of Maryland Socio-Economic Programs

The University of Baltimore's MBE Liaison and Small Business Liaison is Blair Blankinship, director of Procurement, 410.837.5714 or  Questions about how to do business with UB or about UB's business opportunities should be addressed to the MBE Liaison and Small Business Liaison.

Blind Industries and Services of Maryland

Innovative Programs and Services for Blind and Low Vision People are provided to the citizens of Maryland by Blind Industries and Services of Maryland (BISM).  They offers free life skills rehabilitation programs for blind and low vision people of all ages. Our mission at BISM is to provide each student with the ability to achieve self-sufficiency, personal growth and independence.

 Comprehensive instruction is offered in Braille, Cane Travel, Adaptive Computer Technology, and Independent Home Living. The majority of BISM instructors are blind and serve as mentors and role models to the students.

  Shopping With BISM Has Never Been Easier!
Blind Industries and Services of Maryland (BISM) is here to meet the needs of you, our customer.  To help make your shopping experience more convenient and to fit your needs BISM provides multiple ways for you to purchase and work with our BISM Team of specialists.
BISM is proud to offer the following ways to shop:
• Customer Care 410-737-2600 or 888-322-4567: This qualified team of   professionals are available Monday-Friday from 8am - 4:30pm to answer all of your questions and help meet all of your needs.  We look forward to taking your order for BISM products and encourage you to call us at anytime to check your order status or to receive product assistance.
• This online purchasing option provides you a way to shop at your convenience, 24/7 to fulfill all of your BISM State Use Master List product needs while giving you access to 80,000 items to consider for your office’s requirements. For preferred State pricing and to setup an account contact us at 877-647-4611 or click the “Request Account” button.  
• Email Allows for a busy purchasing professional to   create a purchase order and email it in to our Customer Care Professionals.  We will reply with a confirmation and are there to answer any questions you may have about the status of your order.
• Fax 410-737-2667: Purchase orders faxed over to BISM will be entered and your confirmation will be sent, ensuring you that your order has been received and is in process.
Every purchase creates additional jobs for blind Marylanders at BISM.

Support the work of BISM by buying supplies from them!  See the link for available supplies.


Minority Business Enterprise Program

The University System of Maryland Minority Business Enterprise program is committed to maximizing contract opportunities for minority businesses and to the 29 percent participation rate goal. The System's procurement policies and procedures commit to competition and equal access to USM business opportunities.

Last year, the USM spent over $142.7 million dollars with certified MBE firms!

The University System of Maryland Board of Regents supports the State of Maryland’s efforts to increase opportunities for minority and women owned businesses to conduct business with the State in general and the USM in particular. The USM recognizes the responsibility and accepts the challenges associated with the implementation of this important goal. The Board of Regents stated "…the University System of Maryland remains firmly committed to encouraging participation in its procurements by certified minority business enterprises".

There are four key elements to the UB strategy of for achieving the 29% goal and the 10% (or more) procurement activity (as measured by payments made) with certified small businesses:

  • Education of administration, faculty and staff
  • Targeted procurements
  • Outreach
  • Monitoring


Minority Business Enterprise Program

A Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) is a business that is at least 51 percent owned and controlled by one or more minority persons. A minority is generally defined as an individual who is African American, Hispanic American, Asian American, Native American, a Woman or a Disabled Person.

The Maryland Department of Transportation must certify MBE firms before we can count their participation toward our goals. MDOT also maintains a database of certified MBE contractors.

In July 2001 the State increased the goal of awarding contracts to Minority Business Enterprises from 14 percent to 25 percent.  In 2013 the State again increased the aspirational goal to 29 percent. We must work even harder and smarter to reach the goal. University faculty and staff must work together to actively consider MBEs when making purchases.

The Maryland Department of Transportation is the State Agency that has responsibility for certifying minority businesses in Maryland. You can access the database of certified MBE contractors on the MDOT web page. 

There is an index to NAICS codes available on the NAICS web page.

Small and Disadvantaged Businesses

The State of Maryland Small Business Reserve Program is committed to the growth and success of small businesses. Through the Small Business Reserve program, small businesses will be able to bid for State contracts without competing with larger, more established companies, when responding to a designated procurement..

Registration is easy and businesses must be self-certified annually.  The Maryland Department of General Services provides more information about the Small Business Reserve Program including a database of certified small businesses.  

As of Oct. 1, 2004, designated agencies (including UB) are required to award a minimum of 10 percent of their units' total dollar value of goods, supplies, services, maintenance, construction, construction related, architectural service and engineering service contracts to small businesses.

The University fully supports contracting efforts to integrate small and disadvantaged businesses as University contractors in compliance with Public Law 95-507, which requires outreach to small and disadvantaged businesses and development of plans for contracting or subcontracting with small and disadvantaged businesses. Small and disadvantaged businesses include Women Owned firms, Disadvantaged firms, Historically Underutilized Business Zones (HUB Zones), Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority Institutions (HBCUs), Veteran Owned Small Businesses and Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Businesses.

Part of our certification to receive federal funds is based on fulfillment of our Small Business Master Subcontracting Plan. To insure compliance with the Plan the University has designated Blair Blankinship, director of Procurement, as Small Business Subcontracting Plan Administrator. Part of that responsibility is to be sure the Master Subcontracting Plan is up to date, to ensure that individual Small Business Subcontracting Plans are written for each federally funded contract in excess of $500,000 and to issue the semiannual SF 294 and SF 295 reports on progress to date in fulfilling the Subcontracting Master Plan.

When spending federal funds, Procurement Staff and the customer has the responsibility to search source lists of small, disadvantaged, women-owned, HUB-Zone, HBCU and Veteran Owned Small Businesses for firms that can provide the needed goods and services. The Procurement Specialist will investigate the firms' capabilities and consider our own experience and the experience of references with these firms to determine If they are qualified to provide what is needed. If a competitive solicitation is issued all such qualified firms will receive a copy of the solicitation. In addition copies of formal Invitations For Bids and Requests For Proposals are mailed to the State of Maryland Office of Minority Affairs.

Source lists to be utilized include:

Procurement and Materials Management can assist you in finding MBE, small and disadvantaged businesses, including women owned businesses, HUB Zone businesses, veteran owned businesses, service disabled veteran owned businesses, and historically black colleges and universities.


Minority Business Enterprise Spotlight

The University works with many fine MBE and small business contractors. Here are just a couple of certified MBE contractors that have successfully served the University:

AJ Stationers, Linda Kaufman, 7601 Brandon Woods Blvd, Baltimore, MD 21226, 410.360.4900, FAX 410.360.4291. AJ's provides office supplies and toner cartridges.Communications Televideo Limited (CTL), 9301 Georgia Ave, Silver Spring, MD 20910, provides audiovisual and video equipment.

Rudolph's Office Supplies - provides a wide variety of office supplies.  Rudolph's Office & Computer Supply, Inc, 5020 Campbell Blvd., suite C, Baltimore, MD  21236

Copy Cat - the University's reprographics and copy service. Lisa Tasker, 410.889.4800

Daly Computers, 22521 Gateway Center Drive Clarksburg, MD 20871 MBE #90-727 Small Business Certification number is SB12-5566 January 15, 2013  USM/MEEC contract Number: UB-12-B-19-D1

Daly’s Maryland Inside Sales Team: Sales Manager: Jeff DiBella, e-mail:, telephone: 301.670.0381, ext. 455

Infopro Incorporated, Sue Graham, 8405 Colesville Rd., Silver Spring, MD 20910, 301.587.0067, provides computer programming services and integration.

Horton Mechanical Contractors, Inc., Keith P. Horton, 7909 Philadelphia Road, Baltimore, MD 21237-2694, 410.866.4900, provides plumbing, HVAC and mechanical engineering services.

Sunshine Electric, Inc, Sherry Freund, P.O. Box 43992, Baltimore, MD 21236, 410.931.4952, provides electrical maintenance and installation service.

Total Contracting, Inc. 10237 Southard Dr  Beltsville, MD 20705, 301.595.7002

Fitchco Janitorial Supplies - 2201 Russell St, Baltimore, MD 21230  410-539-1953; 800-933-4824; fax: 410-727-2244

Blind Industries and Services of Maryland, Frederick Puente, John Ward, 2901 Strickland St, Baltimore, MD 21223, 410.233.4567, provides window treatments, stationary, paper products, Soaps, cleaning, computer processing/data preparation and other services.

Rapid Response, Al Reid, 7609 Energy Parkway Suite 1003, Baltimore, MD 21226-1737, 410.360.5504, provides fulfillment services, direct marketing service, response processing, data entry.

Consider It Done, Marsha Drew, Beltsville, MD 20705-1302, 301.419.2190, provides direct mailing services.

  • Computers
    • Daly
    • ATS
  • Office Supplies
    • AJ Stationers
    • Rudolph’s
  • Housekeeping Supplies
    • Fitch
  • Temp Staffing – Work with HR
    • First Choice Staffing
  • Catering
    • Abundance Catering, Catonsville
    • Simply Good, Baltimore
  • Reprographics

There are many other qualified Minority Business Enterprises for almost every need. Please check the database for the complete listing.

Last Published 10/10/17